[Check out Part 1 of our Occupy Skid Row coverage HERE]
The journey back in time through the history of L.A. Hip-Hop continued at the "Occupy Skid Row" Music Festival this past weekend, with a performance by The Freestyle Fellowship. The group performed their Jazz-inspired song, “Inner City Boundaries,” which was a staple on Yo! MTV Raps back in 1993.
The musical time machine then traveled deeper into the past as the crowd was treated to a performance by The Egyptian Lover, an original member of the legendary Uncle Jamm's Army DJ crew and one of the first notable rap names to come out of Los Angeles before there was a fully-established West Coast scene. Fans partied through a medley of tracks like, “Egypt, Egypt,” “What Is A DJ”, and “My Beat Goes Boom.”
The audience was then introduced to Darryl “Big Dad” Pierce and Dwayne “Muffa” Simon who, along with Bobcat and DJ Pooh, formed the infamous production team known as The L.A. Posse. Big Dad and Muffla gave a brief history lesson about their past work with Def Jam Records - namely, LL Cool J's Bigger and Deffer album. The duo then brought out MC Breeze, for whom they produced his 1990 single, “L.A. Posse.” It was a homecoming for Breeze, who hadn't performed the song in Los Angeles for over 20 years, according to Muffla. Once Breeze finished, The L.A. Posse introduced their next protege, The Lady of Rage, who they introduced to the business prior to her Death Row Records days. Rage rocked the party with her 1994 single, “Afro Puffs.”
West Coast producing legend Sir Jinx, most noted for his work on Ice Cube's early albums, introduced General Population, made up of two young artists named Tri-Star and Big Hop. After their quick performance, Chuck D ushered out one of the first Los Angeles rap groups to ever release a record - Disco Daddy and Captain Rapp. The two performed their song, “Radio Activity”, and then gave the crowd a special treat by bringing out out Ronnie Hudson, who recorded the West Coast Old School classic, “West Coast Poplock.” The homecrowd went wild as Ronnie sang the infamous “California knows how to party” chorus, which was later made popular by the late Roger Troutman on Dr. Dre and Tupac's hit, “California Love.”
As night fell over the Occupy Skid Row Music Festival, Compton legend King T rendered a heartfelt tribute to Nate Dogg, leading into his verse off of Dr. Dre's Chronic 2001 song, “L.A. N*****.” Closing act Kurupt finished the evening off - the Dogg Pound member lit up the enthused crowd with his verse from the Snoop Dogg classic, “Ain't No Fun,” and he even brought out former enemy BG Knocc-Out - a one time member of Eazy-E's Ruthless Records - as a show of West Coast unity.
Occupy Skid Row was positivity mixed with nostalgia, shining a much-needed spotlight on the plight of the homeless in Los Angeles and many other cities nationwide. Special recognition is due to General Jeff for serving the backbone of the Skid Row festival, and for his daily fight for the causes of the Skid Row community.
Check out more event photos below, and get involved in helping out the homeless by visiting LA CAN at http://www.cangress.org/we_lacan.htm !
Brother J of X-Clan
Chuck D, General Jeff, and Flavor Flav
Money B of Digital Underground