Soul Survivor was Pete Rock’s first solo effort, released via Loud Records. Before the album dropped, a rare sampler entitled It’s Me made it’s rounds early in 1998. The sampler featured tracks produced by Pete Rock (and strangely a track by DJ Krush featuring Tragedy Khadafi?). The first track is an unreleased version of “Strange Fruit“.
The album version featured Tragedy, Wu-Tang affiliate Cappadonna and Onyx’s Sticky Fingaz. The unreleased version is much longer and has a different line-up. The Tragedy verse and hook remain intact; however, Pete Rock actually spits a
weak verse on this one. He’s followed by Tragedy’s cohort N.O.R.E. and finally Meccalicious. Meccalicious hailed from Pete Rock’s neighborhood, Mount Vernon, and even earned himself an “unsigned hype” in The Source. He did a few more songs with Pete Rock, but his career never really took off. In addition to the line up, the intro is also slightly different. The album version has the Billy Holiday sample reversed. The demo version doesn’t.
I admit I don’t own It’s Me. Instead, I found this track on a white label bootleg simply labeled RA-009. The b-side is the DJ Krush song with Tragedy.