Forgotten Treasures

Forgotten Treasure: Kazi & Madlib “A.V.E.R.A.G.E” (2000)


I was DJing on New Years at The Goods event in Montreal which is always one of my favorite crowds to play for and my good friend Scott C was playing this one track that caught my attention about 5 seconds into it because it was one of those tracks you heard once on a mixtape 10 years ago type of thing. Then, I also remembered that I had a house record from Solid Groove that used the same exact sample. Well, after a little bit of digging around I found the info for this absolutely essential forgotten gem from the early 2000 indie Cali rap scene with production courtesy of Otis Jackson Jr. aka Madlib.

“Average” was produced by Madlib who first broke out as part of Lootpack, cult group from the late 90’s in California. Their first LP included a track from Kazi, who like Madlib was an Oxnard native (not sure if he was in that awesome Lootpack Toyota commercial). Anywhoo, Madlib and Kazi collaborated on one EP titled “Down for the Kaz,” which Stones Throw released in 2000. Sadly it was pretty much the high point of Kazi’s rap career whose last release came in 2004. But let’s be honest here, the real highlight on this one is the production. Madlib really cuts up the sample by Jimmy Scott (listen to it out below) reminiscent of how Premier used that Joe Simon sample for Gang Starr’s “You Know My Steez”

A-Trak, Montrealer and DJ wizard on Kazi’s “Average”, a track he considers to be one of his favorite Madlib productions of all time

“A personal favorite in Madlib’s catalog. In the early 2000’s Peanut Butter Wolf, Egon and Madlib all used to live at this house in Mt. Washington and I would stay there when I went to LA. It was always ill to walk into Madlib’s studio and see all his records lying around while he was making beat tapes. He used to record his beats into a digital 16-track – I think it was a Roland 1688, but I could be wrong. I would grab a beat CD and listen to his instrumentals, and then 6 months later they’d pop up on Madvillain or something like that. But anyway I digress, this Kazi beat is crazy and he chopped the hell out of the Jimmy Scott sample. Haunting”


Check out the original sample from Jimmy Scott. (The part Madlib used is around :20 seconds)

Jimmy Scott - I Wish I Knew (1970)

Also, on a totally different (but fantastic tip) check out the way house producer Solid Groove used the same sample a few years ago…

More Info

Stones Throw Records – STH 2028
Vinyl, 12″, Single

A1 Down For The Kaz (Vocals)
A2 A.V.E.R.A.G.E (Vocals)
A3 Wake Up (Vocals)
B1 Down For The Kaz (Instrumental)
B2 A.V.E.R.A.G.E (Instrumental)
B3 Wake Up (Instrumental)

Buy MP3 


Montreal-based DJ and the founder (2007) and 24 Hours of Vinyl (2011).