Saturday, August 17, 2019

The Pharcyde

The Pharcyde (pronounced "far side") is an American alternative hip hop group, formed in 1989, from South Central Los Angeles. The original four members of the group are Imani (Emandu Wilcox), Slimkid3 (Trevant Hardson), Bootie Brown (Romye Robinson), and Fatlip (Derrick Stewart). DJ Mark Luv was the group's first disc jockey (DJ), followed by producer J-Swift and then J Dilla.[citation needed] The group is perhaps best known for the hit singles "Drop", "Passin' Me By" and "Runnin'", as well as their first album, Bizarre Ride II the Pharcyde (1992). The group continues to tour and record, both collaboratively and in solo projects—the most recent being Hardson's collaborative EP with the award-winning DJ Nu-Mark (of Jurassic 5) released in 2014 on Delicious Vinyl.

Pharcyde group members Slimkid3, Bootie Brown, and Imani met as dancers in the late 1980s and dancing was their main ambition as late as 1990. Around this time, Imani and Slimkid3 were in a group called "As Is" and later a group called the "Play Brothers", whilst Bootie Brown was a backup dancer for Fatlip (Fatlip being the last member to join the group). Bootie Brown recalls that their earlier dancing careers influenced their rapping – "sometimes the way I rap is almost like the way I used to dance". The group met Reggie Andrews, a local high-school music teacher who worked with the Dazz Band and Rick James, and who was a major musical influence on their debut album. The group also met producer J-Swift around this time, as he was Reggie Andrews's "star pupil" according to the book Check the Technique.

The Pharcyde recorded their first demo in 1991, which contained the songs "Passin' Me By", "Ya Mama", and "Officer", and hired a manager, Paul Stewart, who had worked for Cypress Hill, De La Soul, and House of Pain. Mike Ross of Delicious Vinyl heard the demo and the group was signed to the label in the summer of 1991 – they were first featured on Brand New Heavies's album Heavy Rhyme Experience, Vol. 1, on the song "Soul Flower", released by Delicious Vinyl in 1992.

The group, along with producer J-Swift, recorded their first album Bizarre Ride II the Pharcyde, which was released in September 1992. The album was certified Gold by the RIAA in 1996. The album was highly acclaimed, and became one of the most praised and influential alternative hip hop albums of the 1990s.

Their second single "Passin' Me By" became a minor Billboard hit, peaking at No. 52 on the Hot 100. The song was later featured in the hit movie Big Daddy and was also a crossover modern rock hit.[12] The song is now usually considered a golden-era staple and is the group's most well known song.[citation needed] The album featured a couple of guest MCs, including Bucwheed (known then as Buckwheat, formerly of the alternative hip-hop group The Wascals) on the tracks "On The DL" and "I'm That Type of Nigga".

Problems between the group and producer J-Swift began during the recording of the debut, with infighting and "personality conflicts". J-Swift started a crack habit, from which he is still trying to recover. A documentary, 1 More Hit (2007), recorded his attempts to recover from his addiction and to regain his music career.

After the Bizarre Ride album was released, the group began touring with A Tribe Called Quest and De La Soul, culminating with an appearance at the Lollapalooza show in 1994.

In 1994, Pharcyde appeared on the Red Hot Organization's compilation album, Stolen Moments: Red Hot + Cool. The album, meant to raise awareness and funds in support of the AIDS epidemic in relation to the African American community, was heralded as "Album of the Year" by Time Magazine.

In 1995, The Pharcyde released their second album, Labcabincalifornia. The album received mixed reviews, maybe due to a different musical direction from the light-hearted playfulness of their debut. The album included another big crossover hit, "Runnin'", peaking at No. 55 on the Billboard Hot 100. This single was later featured in the movie 8 Mile, as well as the More Music from 8 Mile soundtrack. Labcabincalifornia featured production from producers Jay Dee (who handled the majority of the production). Member Slimkid3 has stated that the group met Jay Dee by way of Q-Tip of A Tribe Called Quest, who handed them the tape that contained some of the production that would end up on the LP.[17] This album generated lower sales, not reaching gold status. A music video for the song "Drop" was directed by Spike Jonze.

Problems grew between Fatlip and the other MCs after this album, resulting in his leaving the group. In the documentary Cydeways: The Best of the Pharcyde, while the group is performing in shows they still offer their support to Fatlip, telling the crowd that if they support Fatlip on his solo career then they support The Pharcyde and vice versa.


Friday, June 14, 2019

Gang Starr

Gang Starr was an American hip hop duo, originating in Brooklyn, New York , consisting of MC Guru and DJ/producer DJ Premier. Some of their top hits include "Mass Appeal", "Take It Personal" and "Above The Clouds".

The original Gang Starr group was founded in Boston, Massachusetts by Guru (then known as MC Keithy E.) and DJ 1, 2 B-Down (also known as Mike Dee) with various producers, such as Donald D, J.V. Johnson or The 45 King helping out, their earliest recordings were in 1986 where they made various demos. In 1987 and 1988, Gang Starr released three 12" vinyl singles on Wild Pitch Records.

In 1989, the group split and the only member willing to continue under the name was Guru. He soon got in touch with Houston, Texas native DJ Premier (then known as Waxmaster C) who sent him a beat tape, which Guru liked.He invited DJ Premier to join Gang Starr and in that same year they released their first single "Words I Manifest" along with the album No More Mr. Nice Guy (1989). In 1990, the group was signed to the Chrysalis record label by then A&R director Duff Marlowe, a former DJ and Los Angeles Times rap music critic. The London-based label offered Guru and Premier unlimited artistic license and major-label distribution worldwide, a platform the group used to become one of the most influential hip hop acts of that decade. During their career Gang Starr helped pioneer the New York City hardcore hip hop sound. The entire Gang Starr catalog, especially Step in the Arena (1990), Daily Operation (1992), Hard to Earn (1994) and Moment of Truth (1998) are well respected among underground rap fans and critics. Gang Starr provided a track, Battle, for the sound track of the 2002 movie 8 Mile. Their track "Jazz Thing" was featured on the soundtrack to Spike Lee's film Mo' Better Blues.

After several albums and tours, in late 2002 DJ Premier left Europe back to the United States. Once again Guru was faced with continuing alone and became involved in a European tour in 2003-04 with an alternate DJ.

In 2006, Guru indicated in several interviews that Gang Starr had reached its end.

In February 2010, Guru suffered a heart attack, went into a coma, and died on April 19, 2010. Solar, a long-time collaborator of Guru, said Guru chose not to go public with the diagnosis of myeloma that was made in 2000. Guru appeared to have fallen out with DJ Premier seven years prior to his death and did "not wish my ex-DJ to have anything to do with my name, likeness, events, tributes, etc." There is speculation that the letter was not written by Guru, but was composed by Solar. The validity of the statement continues to be heavily questioned by Guru's family and many of his contemporaries within the Hip-Hop culture.

Soon after DJ Premier stated that there was a "posthumous Gang Starr CD/DVD project in the works," and most likely to have been released in 2014, but nothing has been released. Premier confirmed in late 2015 that he was working on a Gang Starr biopic with the cooperation of Guru's sister, Patricia Elam.


Fu-Schnickens

Fu-Schnickens were an American hip-hop trio from 1988 to 1995, based in Brooklyn, New York. The Fu-Schnickens' popularity was brief but significant in hip hop history.[ Their best-known track is 1993's "What's up, Doc? (Can We Rock)", which featured basketball star Shaquille O'Neal.

Fu-Schnickens was composed of Chip Fu (Roderick Roachford), Moc Fu (Joe Jones), and Poc Fu (Lennox Maturine). Fu stood for unity and schnicken was a made-up word that meant coalition. The three friends from East Flatbush, Brooklyn, first gained attention after performing at a hip hop event at Howard University, after which the group was signed by Jive Records. The group's debut single, "Ring the Alarm," hit the top ten on the Billboard Hot Rap Tracks chart in 1992, which sparked anticipation for the group's debut album, F.U. Don't Take It Personal, and also inadvertently immortalized and ignited a new-found popularity for the original "Ring the Alarm," the signature tune of dancehall reggae singjay Tenor Saw from 1985, which the group sampled to create its track of the same name. Furthermore, with the hit singles "La Schmoove" (featuring Phife Dawg of A Tribe Called Quest) and "True Fu-Schnick," the album reached the top 20 on the Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums chart  and was certified for gold-level sales by the RIAA.

In 1993, Fu-Schnickens began work on its second album. The group recorded a fast-paced song called "What's Up, Doc?" which featured a sample of Bugs Bunny saying his famous catchphrase. But the group could not get sample clearance from Warner Bros. so the song was shelved. Meanwhile, the then-rookie NBA star Shaquille O'Neal was a media sensation. In many interviews, he talked about his love of hip hop music and stated that the Fu-Schnickens were his favorite hip hop group. This prompted the group to contact O'Neal for a collaboration. O'Neal recorded a verse that was added on to the already-recorded "What's Up, Doc?" with the group and O'Neal saying "What's up, doc?" to replace the Bugs Bunny sample. Although the group had not yet completed work on its album, the song was quickly released as a single to capitalize on O'Neal's popularity. The single was a top-40 hit in the summer of 1993, which briefly propelled the group into the mainstream. The group's second album, Nervous Breakdown, did not arrive until 1994.

The group took part in a huge performance on the finale of The Arsenio Hall Show, alongside the likes of KRS-One, Wu-Tang Clan, Naughty by Nature, MC Lyte, Guru, Mad Lion, Yo-Yo, Das EFX, CL Smooth, and A Tribe Called Quest.

Fu-Schnickens is also notable for its many references to martial arts films and Asian culture before Wu-Tang Clan, which eventually helped make such references popular in hip hop music.


Nice & Smooth

Nice & Smooth is an East Coast hip hop duo from New York City that consists of Greg "Greg Nice" Mays and Daryl "Smooth B" Barnes, plus their deejay Tedd "DJ Teddy Tedd" Whiting. The duo released four albums between 1989 and 1997. Their first collaborative appearance was on the single "Dope on a Rope"/"Skill Trade" on Strange Family Records in 1987. On the strength of that underground single they managed a guest spot on the song "Pimpin Ain't Easy" by Big Daddy Kane on his 1989 album It's a Big Daddy Thing.

Nice & Smooth's biggest radio fame came from "Sometimes I Rhyme Slow" from the group's second album, Ain't a Damn Thing Changed, released in 1991. The song was a moderately somber rhyme with introspective lines about poverty, AIDS, and drugs that was set to the guitar loop from Tracy Chapman's hit "Fast Car". In the summer of 1992, the music video received heavy rotation on MTV. "Hip-Hop Junkies", which featured a sample from The Partridge Family's "I Think I Love You" was also a hit, and it was once performed live on Keenen Ivory Wayans' comedy/variety TV show, In Living Color. The duo is known for their humorous rhymes and catchy hooks. They often appeared as guest emcees on albums by the Beatnuts, Gang Starr and Tony Touch, among many others. They were represented by Reggie Osse.

2Pac intended to sign Greg Nice to his Makaveli Records label and even recorded tracks with the duo for his One Nation album, which featured other artists such as Smif-N-Wessun, Luniz, Snoop Dogg. Trugoy from De La Soul paid homage to Nice & Smooth by using each member's rhyming style in verses on the song "Simply Havin'" from De La Soul's AOI: Bionix album.

Smooth B wrote rhymes for Bobby Brown that appeared on his debut album King of Stage and second album Don't Be Cruel. In 2005, he released a single titled "Game Over", produced by DJ Premier, and released a single in 2014 called "Set It Off".


Audio/Video

Are you looking for classic Hip Hop Battles, or Live shows? We got those to. Be sure to check out

Audio Section

Video Section

Popular Posts

Powered by Blogger.