Mecca and the Soul Brother

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Mecca and the Soul Brother
Pete & cl - mecca & the soul brother.jpg
Studio album by Pete Rock & CL Smooth
Released June 9, 1992
Recorded 1991–92
Genre Golden age hip hop, jazz rap, East Coast hip hop
Length 77:23 (CD)
85:14 (2xLP/MC)
Label Elektra
Producer Pete Rock & CL Smooth, Large Professor
Pete Rock & CL Smooth chronology
All Souled Out
(1991)All Souled Out1991
Mecca And The Soul Brother
The Main Ingredient
(1994)The Main Ingredient1994
Singles from Mecca and the Soul Brother
  1. "They Reminisce Over You (T.R.O.Y.)"
    Released: 1992
  2. "Straighten It Out"
    Released: 1992
  3. "Lots of Lovin"
    Released: 1993

Mecca and the Soul Brother is the critically acclaimed 1992 debut album from the Mount Vernon duo, Pete Rock & CL Smooth. The album contains their best known song, "They Reminisce Over You (T.R.O.Y.)." Mecca and the Soul Brother has been widely acclaimed as one of the greatest hip hop albums of all time.[1][2] The album was mostly produced by Pete Rock and executive produced by DJ Eddie F of Heavy D & the Boyz (co-group member with Trouble T-Roy).


Mecca and the Soul Brother followed on the heels of the duo's EP; All Souled Out, released in 1991. Despite being a critical success, it had little commercial success in comparison to other noteworthy releases of 1992, such as Dr. Dre's The Chronic. The first single, "They Reminisce Over You (T.R.O.Y.)", a dedication to their deceased friend; Trouble T Roy (a dance member of Heavy D. & The Boyz), has gone on to become not only their signature hit, but also one of hip hop's most highly regarded songs.[3][4]

Other topics on the album range from life in the ghetto ("Ghettos of the Mind"), the teachings of the Nation of Islam ("Anger in the Nation"), bootlegging ("Straighten It Out"), and love ("Lots of Lovin'").


Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
Allmusic 5/5 stars[5]
The Baltimore Sun (favorable)[6]
Robert Christgau (neither)[7]
Entertainment Weekly C+[8]
The New York Times (favorable)[9]
RapReviews (9.5/10)[10]
Rolling Stone 5/5 stars[11]
Spin (favorable)[12]
Virgin Encyclopedia 4/5 stars[13]

Mecca and the Soul Brother brought considerable acclaim to the duo. They were often compared to the group Gang Starr, which also featured one MC, and a producer/DJ.[14] Although the album garnered a great amount of acclaim, sales were slow. The group only grew more popular, however, and next appeared on the Menace II Society soundtrack, followed by Who's the Man?, and Poetic Justice, respectively before returning in 1994, with The Main Ingredient.

Track listing[edit]

# Title Performer(s) Samples Time
1 "Return of the Mecca" 5:42
2 "For Pete's Sake" 5:48
3 "Ghettos of the Mind" 5:01
4 "Lots of Lovin'"
  • "Player's Balling (Players Doin' Their Own Thing)" and "What's Going On?" by Ohio Players
  • "North Carolina" by Les McCann
5 "Act Like You Know" 4:01
6 "Straighten It Out" 4:12
7 "Soul Brother #1" 4:30
8 "Wig Out" 4:10
9 "Anger in the Nation" 5:31
10 "They Reminisce Over You (T.R.O.Y.)" 4:44
11 "On and On" 5:10
12 "It's Like That" 3:55
13 "Can't Front on Me" 4:18
14 "The Basement" 5:22
15 "If It Ain't Rough, It Ain't Right" 5:04
16 "Skinz" 4:14
  • The cassette and 2xLP versions contain two bonus tracks: "The Creator (Remix)" and "Mecca and the Soul Brother (Remix)"
  • (*) Symbolizes co-producer

Album singles[edit]

Single information
"They Reminisce Over You (T.R.O.Y.)"
  • Released: 1992
  • B-side: "The Creator"
"Straighten It Out"
  • Released: 1992
  • B-side: "They Reminisce Over You (T.R.O.Y.) (Remix)"
"Lots of Lovin"
  • Released: 1993
  • B-side: "It's Not A Game"

Chart history[edit]


Chart (1992) Peak
US Billboard 200[15] 43
US Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums (Billboard)[16] 7


Year Song Chart positions
Billboard Hot 100 Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Singles & Tracks Hot Rap Singles Hot Dance Music/Maxi-Singles Sales
1992 They Reminisce Over You [T.R.O.Y.] 58 10 1 20
Straighten It Out - 65 7 37
1993 Lots of Lovin - 66 1 -


The information is taken from[17] and other website links below.

Publication Country Accolade Year Rank United States 100 Greatest Hip-Hop Albums 2008 #37
Ego Trip United States Hip Hop's 25 Greatest Albums by Year 1980-98 1999 #8
Exclaim! Canada 100 Records that Rocked 100 Issues 2000 *
Rolling Stone United States The Essential Recordings of the 90s 1999 *
The Source United States The 100 Best Rap Albums of All Time 1998 *
Mojo UK Mojo 1000, the Ultimate CD Buyers Guide 2001 *
(*) designates lists that are unordered.

In popular culture[edit]

The first single "They Reminisce Over You (T.R.O.Y.)" appeared in the 2003 video game NBA Street Vol. 2 and the 2011 video game Madden NFL 12, as well as in the Netflix series Master of None.


  1. ^ " Source 100 Best Rap Albums & Singles". Retrieved 2012-03-01. 
  2. ^ "The Greatest Hip-Hop Albums of all Time - Top 100 Rap/Hip-Hop Albums". 2012-01-26. Retrieved 2012-03-01. 
  3. ^ "They Reminisce Over You". Acclaimed Music. Retrieved 2012-03-01. 
  4. ^ "Top 100 Rap Songs - These are the Top 100 Rap Songs that helped shaped Hip-Hop - Top 100 Rap Songs". 2012-01-26. Retrieved 2012-03-01. 
  5. ^ Stewart, Stanton (March 3, 2008). Review: Mecca and the Soul Brother. Allmusic. Retrieved on 2010-10-24.
  6. ^ Considine, J.D. (July 10, 1992). Review: Mecca and the Soul Brother. The Baltimore Sun. Retrieved on 2010-10-24.
  7. ^ Christgau, Robert (1992). "Consumer Guide: Mecca and the Soul Brother". The Village Voice. Retrieved on 2010-10-24.
  8. ^ Browne, David (July 17, 1992). Review: Mecca and the Soul Brother. Entertainment Weekly. Retrieved on 2010-10-24.
  9. ^ Watrous, Peter (July 1, 1992). "The Pop Life". The New York Times. Retrieved May 12, 2010. 
  10. ^ Mennella, Dan (September 30, 2003). Review: Mecca and the Soul Brother. RapReviews. Retrieved on 2010-10-24.
  11. ^ Hoard, Christian (November 2, 2004). "Review: Mecca and the Soul Brother". Rolling Stone: 695.
  12. ^ Malone, Bonz (October 1992). "Review: Mecca and the Soul Brother". Spin: 26.
  13. ^ Larkin, Colin (March 1, 2002). "Review: Mecca and the Soul Brother". Virgin Encyclopedia of Popular Music. Retrieved on 2010-10-24.
  14. ^ Paine, Jake (2010-10-21). "DJ Premier Confirms "Pete Rock vs. DJ Premier" Album In The Works | Get The Latest Hip Hop News, Rap News & Hip Hop Album Sales". HipHop DX. Retrieved 2012-03-01. 
  15. ^ "Pete Rock – Chart history" Billboard 200 for Pete Rock.
  16. ^ "Pete Rock – Chart history" Billboard Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums for Pete Rock.
  17. ^ "Mecca and the Soul Brother at". Retrieved June 22, 2007. 

External links[edit]