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Ice Cube on 30-Year Anniversary of Amerikka’s Most Wanted, Goin Solo and Working in NY With Public Enemy

Now some reading this may be wondering why Black Westchester would post this because this was a very important moment in Hip-Hop History. In the IG Live session, Cube talks about leaving NWA, getting with Public Enemy and what went into the making of his first solo on the 30-year-anniversary of Amerikkk’s Most Wanted, which merged West Coast Gangsta Rap from one of the best storytelling emcees from the West Coast with the dopest producers and tightest Hip-Hop clicks on the East Coast who produced that incredible New York boom bap sound of the sample era of Hip-Hop.

We post this video for your enjoyment and education, from the emcee that wrote the controversial “F*ck tha Police”, one of Hip-Hop’s greatest protest songs that describes why there is so much frustration over police criminality. We give a quick warning of Explicit Language and subject matter that is still relevant 30 years later especially in this time of the killing of George Floyd and all the protest that followed in frustration of another Black Live Lost of Livestream at the hands of Law Enforcement.

ENDANGERED SPECIES (TALES FROM THE DARKSIDE)
– ICE CUBE FEATURING CHUCK D

“At the bottom of our news tonight, there’s been a new animal aimed at falling off the face of our Earth. Yes, young black teenagers are reported to be the oldest, and the newest, creatures added to the endangered species list. As of now, no efforts have been made to preserve the Blacks. When asked why, a top top law official adds, ‘Because they make good game'”

One of the most powerful songs that still stands with what we are going through today is Endangered Species (Tales From The Darkside) – at the 44:40 minute mark of the video – featuring the Masters of The Universe voice of PE’s frontman Chuck D;

Who the fuck are they foolin’?
Nobody knows, but I suppose the color of my clothes
Matches the color of the one on my face
As they wonder whats under my waist

Ice Cube collaborates with Public Enemy front man Chuck D on the track ‘’Endangered Species’’ which is about the increasing murders of young black men. Similar theme of the film Boyz-N-The Hood that starred Ice Cube as Doughboy a character closer to the persona of Ice Cube’s raps. This track expresses the frustrations, the dangers and idiocy of black on black crime, which benefits the racist system. While it largely discusses the gang culture and Black on Black crime it also paints a powerful picture of police brutality of the LAPD and definitely expanded his audience to the many Public Enemy fans.

How the fuck do you figure?
that I can say peace and the gunshots will cease?!
Every cop killer goes ignored
They just send another nigga to the morgue
A point scored- they could give a fuck about us
They rather catch us with guns and white powder
If I was old, they’d probably be a friend of me
Since I’m young, they consider me the enemy
They kill ten of me to get the job correct
To serve, protect, and break a niggas neck
Cuz I’m the one with the trunk of funk
And ‘Fuck tha Police’ in the tape deck
You should listen to me cuz there’s more to see
Call my neighborhood a ghetto cuz it houses minorities
The other color don’t know you can run but not hide
These are tales from the darkside…

N.W.A.’s former front man left one of Rap’s most controversial groups at their peak to go solo without any production from Dr. Dre. He then headed to New York to find a new producer, resulting in one of the greatest debut albums in Rap history.

Ice Cube was 20 years old at the time, constantly butting heads with Jerry Heller and Eazy-E over his splits, points and his royalties from N.W.A’s back catalog in addition to Eazy-E’s. Rather than sign another contract with Ruthless that would no doubt result in Cube continuing being under compensated for his role in the group as well as other albums on the label, he instead opted to go solo. By December 1989, Ice Cube leveraged his value to Priority into a solo deal by telling them Def Jam was interested in signing him.

This resulted in Ruthless Records blocking Dr. Dre from producing Ice Cube’s upcoming debut on Priority Records so he contacted several people in New York in search of producers, among them being The Bomb Squad which he had preliminary talks with. Ice Cube traveled to New York in January 1990 with Sir Jinx heading for the Def Jam offices to meet with Sam Sever, one of the main producers of one of his favorite albums of 1989, 3rd Bass’ “The Cactus Album”.

Sam Sever never showed up for the meeting but by chance Ice Cube ran into Chuck D of Public Enemy who was in Def Jam’s offices handling some business. Ice Cube and Chuck D first became acquainted back in December 1988 when Public Enemy brought N.W.A. & Eazy-E along with them on the Bring The Noise Tour with Ice T, Stetsasonic & EPMD. Public Enemy was in the process of completing their album “Fear Of A Black Planet” and Chuck tells Cube he should come to Greene Street Studios tonight because they were going to record a song called “Burn, Hollywood, Burn” with Big Daddy Kane. Cube came through, recorded a short 4 bar verse and sounded at home over Bomb Squad production… the rest was history.

Ice Cube then spent time with Chuck D fleshing out what he wanted on the album in notebooks and Hank Shocklee of The Bomb Squad stressed that they wanted to make a concise body of work for him as opposed to a few tracks here and there. Next step involved Ice Cube and Sir Jinx spending a couple of weeks at Public Enemy’s pre-production studio and rehearsal space at 510 South Franklin Street in Hempstead, Long Island poring through a mountain of records.

After taking careful consideration of the many records at their disposal, Cube & Jinx selected Funk from Kool & The Gang, Commodores, Betty Davis, Steve Arrington, Funkadelic, Parliament, Sly & The Family Stone, Maceo & The Macks, Bar-Kays, The J.B.’s, Fred Wesley & The New J.B.’s and Zapp in addition to staple breaks from Bob James, Mountain, The Meters, The Turtles, ESG, Cerrone, Melvin Bliss, King Curtis, Lafayette Afro Rock Band, Kid Dynamite and Soul Searchers. Between Ice Cube, Sir Jinx, Hank & Keith Shocklee, Chuck D & Eric “Vietnam” Sadler we have all the ingredients necessary for a classic album.

Listen to AmeriKKKa’s Most Wanted Expanded Edition Playlist: https://IceCube.lnk.to/AMW30PlaylistID

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About AJ Woodson (2375 Articles)
AJ Woodson is the Editor-In-Chief of Black Westchester and Co-Owner of Urban Soul Media Group, the parent company. AJ is a Father, Brother, Author, Writer, Journalism Fellow, Rapper, Radio Personality, Hip-Hop Historian and A Freelance Journalist whose byline has appeared in several print publications and online sites including The Source, Vibe, the Village Voice, Upscale, Sonicnet.com, Launch.com, Rolling Out Newspaper, Spiritual Minded Magazine and several others.
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