Hot 5: Rappers with Too Much Posse
Rappers, like any other stars, have to have an entourage. When you roll up all by yourself with no boys, no crew and no security, a rapper just looks…lonely. So having a few people roll with you is not unheard of. But where do you draw the line? We here at GHz are calling out the rappers who went overboard, with 2 DJs, 12 video girls, 2 hype men, a symphony orchestra and 5 square blocks worth of homeboys.
Ah yes, Kwame. The man responsible for making polka dot pants acceptable club attire has yet another crime to answer for. Kwame was hot when he was hot, but for a solo rapper he had far more folks than he needed in the posse department. Besides the DJ and the dancers, there’s the tall girl Tasha who sang a few hooks and REALLY didn’t need to roll to the shows. As for the cute shorty? Far as we know, she never did ANYthing in the videos, on record or otherwise.
Everyday People got a LOT of play back in ’93, and Tennessee might actually be a hip hop classic. But Arrested Development was definitely rolling too deep. It takes a village to raise a child, not cut a record. OK, to break it down: Speech rapped, Dionne Farris sang…sometimes, Headliner was the DJ, thick girl did the whole interpretive dance thang, and about thirty-five various and assorted dreds just bobbed their heads to the beat. The topper was Baba Oje, the old dude who NEVER said anything anywhere. He may have been acting as a chaperone on tour (or he could’ve been first in line for the conscious love trains), but if he demanded a cut of the proceeds it’s easy to see why the group splintered over creative differences.
All right, quick test: Name the rappers in DU. Shock G/Humpty Hump, Money B, and, uhhh…yeah, us too. Before you start yelling about 2Pac, remember he started off as a dancer and only rapped on ‘Same Song’ before going solo. I’m a Dj and even I don’t know who Digital Underground’s DJ was. Much less any dancer (‘cept 2pac), and I actually think there was a third rapper in the group. We just don’t feel like looking it up. Plus we don’t really care, do you?
Boogie Down Productions
Let us be the first to say we luuuv us some BDP. Kris is still putting out quality music right now. But in their heyday, KRS wasn’t exaggerating when he said “My posse from the Bronx is THICK.” At one point, BDP boasted D-Nice, Kenny Parker, ICU, Scotty Morris, Ms. Melody, Harmonie, Mad Lion, DJ Red Alert, et al ad nauseum. Keep in mind that after their debut album, Criminal Minded, NOBODY else ever said anything on record except KRS. Now they were all in the video, and BDP originated the “way too many people on stage with mics for no reason” shtick long before Wu-Tang bit. Thankfully, Kris woke up in ‘93 with his first “solo” album, ‘Return of the Boom Bap.’ He rolls pretty much crewless to this day.
Do we really have to run the details on this? It’s a story everybody knows. Hit records, cross-over fame, more dancers than the queen-to-be scene in Coming to America, bankruptcy. But just to kick a dead horse when it’s down, take a look at the photo . Nuff said.
We would be remiss if we didn’t mention Public Enemy and X-Clan. X-Clan actually may have rolled with the Blackwatch Movement crew at ALL times, for reasons unknown but fun to speculate.
PE STILLS rolls deep. Besides the S1W’s and Griff, they added a band. While you don’t need much past Chuck, Flav and DJ Lord (Terminator X is allegedly raising ostriches in North Carolina), the S1W’s at least add to the spectacle, and the live band turns the performance up a couple notches, so they get a pass from this list.