My Favourite People: Jay Smooth

I’ve been wanting to write a post listing my favourite people on the internet. But I’m nervous about missing someone out of a comprehensive list (I know, it would be a disaster). So instead I’m going to run a series of posts, starting with Jay Smooth.

Jay Smooth


I know Jay Smooth as the author of the excellent videoblog, Ill Doctrine.

He’s also the creator of the hip hop music blog and founder of New York’s longest running hip-hop radio show, WBAI’s Underground Railroad. I have no idea what either of those things are.

Hip Hop? Really Sarah? I never would have thought.

Don’t worry, nothing has changed. I am still mostly uninterested in hip hop, which is a testament to Jay Smooth and his super-smart videos.

He talks about all kinds of things. Sometimes I know I will find his videos interesting (when he talks about Obama or something), and sometimes he talks about hip hop too, and it’s STILL interesting! No kidding. And what Jay Smooth has to say applies to so much more than the hip hop community.

Jay Smooth looks at a pretty specific niche and comes up some universal truths – which is even more powerful because it reminds us that even when we’re talking about the layers of everything piled on top of – and sometimes blurring our sense of – a common humanity, the wisdom stays the same.

Watch this when he talks about some guy called Charles Hamilton who would never come onto my radar otherwise (which is fine by me).

See! Interesting right?

And here Jay Smooth talks about talking about racism:

And here he talks about Young Buck and 50 Cent and totally surprised me with a very cool essay on showing emotion.

That’s one of the most entertaining aspects of Jay Smooth’s videos – you don’t know where it’s headed, but you can pretty much guarantee he’ll offer some wisdom.

P.S. Here’s another Ill Doctrine video that doesn’t have all that much Jay Smooth in it, but navigates some terrritory ripe for discussion.

Ill Doctrine on Rihanna and Chris Brown (and a lot more):

5 thoughts on “My Favourite People: Jay Smooth

  1. David

    Yo, Zarah Phortuna is da bizniz. She hops like a hip and hips like a hop. Rezpekt goan out.

  2. Ben

    Yer but I bet u didn’t know the cat writes all his material – did u see that headbutt at the end of the third vid???

    I rest my case.


  3. See Doubleyou

    I love Jay Smooth. It’s so great to stumble upon these intelligent, articulate people on YouTube amidst the kitties on Roombas and the bad cover videos. Not that I have anything against kitties — that head butt was adorable.

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