I recently found one of my old Timberland boxes full of CDs. I'm talking about joints ranging from like 99 to 2003.

That's all I used to do in college: cop CDs. I used to work at Red Lobster at the time. This annoying ass buss boy always used to ask me, "Carl, what you do with your money?" I bought CDs. That's what I did, anything from Grand Agent to Punchline and Wordsworth's EP. Whatever I couldn't cop, I got from Napster. Remember Napster?

But anyway, I went through all these burned CDs and uploaded them on my iTunes. I ended up importing a good number of songs, but didn't get to actually listen until last night. I was at the gym between sets and scrolled through my iPod until I found J-Zone, the "Bum Bitch Ballad" in case you're wondering. Man, I was in college again. Then I went on to Planet Asia's "Pure Coke" and started daydreaming about all these cats I used to listen to during that 99-03 period. Taping Stretch Amstrong and “Future Flavors” back to back on Sunday nights. Remember that kid, Rise? Where the hell is Jane Doe? I never quite found that damn "Bisexual" song. Anybody got news on Apani B. Fly MC? Is J-Live still recording? Where's Wordsworth? What about the Last Emperor? I was just bumping “Monolith.” Where's Sonya Blade? I can't find "Lookin For Da Name" for the life of me. Is MF Doom on strike? I'm seriously asking here. Though they may have, I’m not saying these folks disappeared. I’m asking because I completely lost touch with the underground.

In case you haven't noticed yet, I used to play mostly subterranean music in the Discman (remember those?). I can't even front. I even briefly fell into the "underground music is better just cause it's underground" mentality. I can’t stand people like that now! But now looking back, it seems that the deeper I got into music journalism, the more I distanced myself from the underground. I mean, besides Little Brother, Immortal Technique and a few others, I don't check for underground cats like I used to.

It does seem like the indie scene isn't as viable as it was 9 years ago, but product-wise, I couldn't fairly say whether indie music has deteriorated or not. And come to think about it, the faces have changed. You have Kidz In The Hall, Skyzoo and the Cool Kids now. I'm on a mission, though. I'm gonna start digging again. I get enough mainstream submissions. I need to balance them out. I might even start going to Fat Beats once a month or something. I used to go to Beat Street (R.I.P.) in BK between classes to cop the latest. Maybe I'll start listening to Peter Rosenberg's show. I like his internet interviews, so I'm thinking the show must be good.

You guys have any suggestions? Anybody I need to check out? Oh, and if somebody finds Jane Doe, tell her Jackpot said, "holler!" Speak on it.