Another leader of the New School was the young LL Cool J, who released classics like ´My Radio´ and of course the first love rap ´I need Love´, which became one of the main benchmark songs for the many RnB crossover tracks that feature the charts to this day. LL Cool J was only 15 years old when he was discovered by the Beasty Boys and now is the longest active HIPHOP superstar. Mama said knock you out...
The other legendary leaders of the New school are of course the Beasty Boys. Beyond the gimmicks (Many early HIPHOP heads remember ripping Volkswagen signs to wear on our necklaces like the Beasties) of their bad boy image was a foundation of true HIPHOP skills, innovative qualities and a masterful DJ in the ´back´ground. The first white Hiphoppers that commanded respect from the pre-dominantly coloured HIPHOP community. These three rowdy Jewish kids from Brooklyn paved the way for the skilful (Eminem) and less skilful (Vanilla Ice) white MC´s that followed in their tracks. Standards on their classic album ´License to
` are ´Fight for your right to Party´ and ´No sleep till Brooklyn´. Ill
In the transition of the 80´s to the 90´s, while the original New school was slowly fading, another act on the Def Jam label turned HIPHOP into a literally revolutionary direction. Tapping into the post-Black Panter rage of the afro-american community and bringing the noise, Public Enemy brought HIPHOP political consciousness and a hard hitting, psychadelic, heavy metal musical style. The fierce and controversial lyrics, by the well educated and extremely literate frontman Chuck D., were blasted through the speakers on a dense and fierce soundtrack constructed by DJ Terminator X. There has not been a more intense HIPHOP act since. Their second and third album are mandatory for every true HIPHOP head. (It takes a nation of millions to hold us back (´88), Fear of a Black Planet (´90).
HIPHOP scene was already very active at the time. But Rotterdam was also known for its very own niggas with attitude. Visiting HIPHOP acts had a hard time getting the crowd to participate. Many of the crews and gangs in the audience were too pre-occupied with being ´cooler´ then Ice. But when Public Enemy brought the noise to the AHOY stadium in Rotterdam everybody went absolutely mental. PE commended total respect. The pit in front of the stage was wilder then any pit at a rock concert (I had the bruises to prove it). Chuck D. even had to chill down some of the dogs that started fighting... Rotterdam
Developments in MC skills continued. The pretty hard core rap style of the new school was being challenged by a new stilo of a rapper that combined his dark voice with an incredibly smooth flow unheard of at the time. Without a doubt the most skilled and influential MC of the early days is the legendary Rakim. My personal number one favourite of all times. Every Rap fan should listen to classic tracks like ´Follow the Leader´ and ´Microphone Fiend´. Both produced by Eric B.
Another MC that busted a smoother flow was non other then Ice T who, who in 1987, released one of my all time favourite rap records ´Rhyme Pays´. His cool rap style and intelligent street lyrics made him the frontrunner of the Gangsta Rap. Ice T can be considered the real O.G., Original Gangsta. On his albums he busted funny party raps and did hilarious skits. But the best stuff was his gangster stories. He was keeping it real and in the meantime able to give social commentary and show an intelligent inside into streetlife.
Ice T at one point was extremely popular on
radio stations, bringing rap, which at the time was still mainly catering to a black audience, to a wider white audience. Ice T´s music was aimed at the hard core rap fan but kept on gathering a bigger following. Ice´s popularity showed how the general taste of the public slowly started appreciating the HIPHOP flavours. Before Ice T was swept away into mainstream television and movies he once again sparked controversy (Copkiller) with his Metal HIPHOP band Bodycount. American College