The Ten Most Noteworthy Collaborations on E-40’s The D-Boy Diary: Book 1 & Book 2

Posted by The Bay Area Crew, November 30, 2016 07:55pm | Post a Comment

E-40, D-Boy Diary: Book 1-- By doubleay

Vallejo’s E-40 is a man of many titles. 40 Fonzarelli, 40 Water, and "the tycoon known as Charlie Hustle" are only a few of his dozen or so monikers, but the truest of his titles undoubtedly has to be "The Ambassador of the Bay."

The prolific MC is a forefather of West Coast hip-hop, and his extensive discography and boundless accolades have essentially deemed him the epitome of Bay Area rap. 40 brought Bay Area’s unique sound and style to the rest of the world and if any artist wanted to get a piece of the Bay Area scene, they’d have to go through 40 Belafonte to get it. While many other hip-hop legends have comfortably taken their seat among the ranks of rap’s hall of fame, E-40 has never slowed down nor declined in relevance. Many rap veterans may feel threatened by break-through up-and-comers, but in 40’s case it is quite the opposite. In fact, one of the most admirable things about E-40 is the interest he takes in young artists. While continually progressing his own career, 40 has always put on and supported rising talent new to the industry. E-40’s incomparable stature and experience, met with his kindhearted tendency to promote up-and-comers, truly warrants the title "Ambassador of the Bay."

E-40, D-Boy Diary: Book 2After 27 solo albums, E-40 is back with a new double LP that totally embodies The Ambassador’s ability to cater to his people, both young and old. The D-Boy Diary: Book 1 & Book 2 are each 22 tracks in total, featuring a star-studded track list of stand out OG’s to young bucks. The project has over 40 features, including everything from legends both native and foreign to the Bay Area to fresh up-and-comers with little to no fame or coverage. Few albums have ever had a unique and substantial list of collaborators successfully cater to a wide audience such as this. In an effort to bring some clarity to the depth of this all-ages showcase of a project, I took it upon myself to highlight the most notable features on the double LP.

10. “This Goin’ Up" ft. Husalah & Turf Talk
“This Goin’ Up” is pure Bay music. Turf Talk is a long-standing Sick Wid It artist and the Hus is one of the dynamos from Bay Area super group, Mob Figaz. Hus, Turf Talk, and E-40 is a dream team combo and the track delivers.

9. “Savage" ft. Jazze Pha & B-Legit
A true testimony to the OGs. 40 grabs a fellow Vallejo rap legend, B-Legit, and pairs him with Atlanta’s prolific rapper, writer, and producer Jazze Pha, who has worked with artists along the likes of T.I., 2Pac, Big Tymers, and UGK. The track is contemporary in style and the OG’s refreshingly hold their own on the blap.

E-40 ft. Jazze Pha & B-Legit - “Savage”


8. “Fake Lit” ft. June Onna Beat
40 always knows who is popping in the Bay Area rap scene, and few producers out have blown up this year like June Onna Beat. Coming out of Sacramento, producer and rapper June Onna Beat has developed a sound that has completely taken over Bay Area music and aided in fueling Mozzy’s West Coast take over. Comparable to Atlanta’s Metro Boomin, everybody on the West wants a beat from June. E-40 got his, along with a verse, for the album.

7. “Bring Back the Sideshow” ft. Mistah F.A.B. & Nef the Pharaoh
“Bring Back the Sideshow” is a prime example of 40’s ability to merge the old and new. Nef is a break through up and comer out of Vallejo who 40 has overwhelmingly supported and Mistah F.A.B. is one of the founding father’s of hyphy music who has established himself as one of the Bay Area’s greatest spitters to ever do it. F.A.B.’s 2016 hit "Still Feeling It," an anthem nodding to Mac Dre and all things hyphy in an effort to keep the movement Dre built alive, has been huge this year. And while Nef is fresh on the scene, his Bay roots are strong and actively present in his music. Putting these cats on a record together like “Bring Back the Sideshow” is a testament to all Bay Area values.

Mistah F.A.B. - “Still Feelin’ It”

6. “Money” ft. Mozzy and Jay Rock
“Money” is a heavy hitter featuring some of Cali’s finest. Mozzy has had a whirlwind year for a street rapper, going from being virtually unknown to having just about every blog publish a “Who is Mozzy?” article in 2016. Throwing him on a joint with TDE’s Jay Rock is just about as raw as it gets.

5. “Slappin’” ft. Nef The Pharaoh & D.R.A.M.
This is a collaboration the world didn’t even know it needed. In terms of style, there aren't too many outstanding similarities between the on-the-rise Nef and breakout star D.R.A.M. But the two both have a vibrantly warm and buoyant energy that 40 knew would pop off together, something like adding vinegar to baking soda.

4. “Straight to the Point” ft. Ezale & G-Eazy
G-Eazy and Ezale are both standouts in new Bay music scene. G-Eazy gained his initial reception outside the Bay Area while going to school in New Orleans and cites being just as influenced by Johnny Cash as any rapper he grew up listening to, bringing a major '50s vibe to his contemporary-sounding raps. On the other side of the spectrum, Ezale is pioneering the reinvention of hyphy music, putting a funky new spin on the Bay sound without sacrificing any of its fundamental values. The two both rep the Bay heavily but their respective sounds make for a high unlikely combo -- one only someone like E-40 could think up for a knocker like this.

3. “All Day” ft. Gucci Mane
This track almost seems like a good SAT question: E-40 is to the Bay as ______ is to Atlanta (answer = Gucci!). Both Gucci and 40 are two of the most influential rappers to come out of their respective cities and both are hip-hop philanthropists, putting on one young up-and-comer after another. The two are both definitive Gs. 40 is a real West Coast mack and Gucci is a real Southern boss; few artists could ever parallel each other like this and collaboration of this caliber is historic.

2. “Military Time” ft. Salsalino & Baby Treeze
“Military Time” is exemplary of 40’s goodwill towards rising talent. Salsalino and Baby Treeze are both ambitious Vallejo rappers just beginning to garner some buzz. Recruiting some young soldiers to drill through the aggressive track with him was a killer move, for an artist of 40’s stature to involve talent as fresh as this with his album is remarkable. Many veterans seek rising stars to validate their relevancy, while 40 wants nothing but success for the youth and his neighbors in the 707.

Baby Treeze & Salsalino - “28 Grams”

1. “Flash on these Bitches” ft. Lil B
This is a supremely significant record. Lil B is globally known as a god and while his reach has become boundless, his loyalty to his Bay Area forefathers has never ceased. Berkeley’s Lil B and The Pack first gained notoriety in 2007 with “Vans” and now, after almost a decade of commendable work, Lil B, the BasedGod, finally collaborates with the Ambassador of the Bay, not only providing a verse but the production for the legendary track.

Giving just a gloss over some of the many noteworthy selections found on E-40’s D-Boy Diary, both albums in whole are riddled with awesome tracks orchestrated in a fashion none other than the Ambassador of the Bay could arrange. 40’s propensity to merge rap’s youth with seasoned veterans and his ability to blend styles, like the sprinkling of Atlanta artists on the project, is incomparable. Anyone could try and create an unimaginable track list of this stature, but the chances of it resulting in a cohesive, listenable album are highly unlikely, let alone a hit-filled double album like E-Feezy has achieved with his latest release.

Check out these standout collaborations and so much more on E-40’s new albums D-Boy Diary Books 1 & 2, at Amoeba stores and online now.

Relevant Tags

West Coast Rap (8), Hip-hop (217), Rap (134), E-40 (42), Double Ay (24), Vallejo (2)