In the words on DJ Evil Dee (linear notes):
“This album was done on blunted terms. Anyone who is offended by the contents of the album, FUCK YOU. Nuff said.”
In the 90s, Black Moon was basically EVERYTHING hiphop fans wanted to be like.
The idea of having huge crews in your music videos was something unheard of until Black Moon stepped on the scene. Despite the main people involved can be at least 3-5 on average, you wouldn’t have known that especially when you see at least 20-30 heads in one music video. The west coast artists wasn’t doing that in music videos at the time.
Black Moon’s debut album Enta Da Stage will be turning 25 on the 19th of this month. To celebrate their quarter-century-old album, they’re having a celebration over at SOBs in New York, with the help from Move Forward Music & Funk Flex on the decks. Tickets are now available for purchase.
This album alone introduced to the world the Boot Camp Clik.
It also did a lot for Buckshot, 5ft, and DJ Evil Dee – who saw their early beginnings in high school. They eventually linked up with Mr. Walt and dropped this album on Nervous Recordings in ’92 (Walt & Dee are brothers who became infamous on the production as Da Beatminerz). First single came from this album was ‘Who Got Da Props?’ All the while, Buckshot was trying to get people to take him seriously as a manager at the age of 18 – under being 5’6. He met Dru Ha at the label and the two formed a management company called ‘Duck Down Management’ – which later became Duck Down Records. For Buckshot, it was a really hard time for him personally.
When they dropped the video for the single in late ’92, what was to follow in the later years was unexpected: the fashion sense of dressing in baggy clothes and the 6″ boots; the idea of having more than 15 people as a part of your crew in your music videos (as stated above), the grittiness in the rhymes – especially the location of the music videos to match, the overlaying of jazz samples and production being dark (thanks to DJ Evil Dee) and – the term ‘backpack rap’. In this video, Buckshot, 5ft, and a few others are the more notables that are wearing them while wildin’ out.
“Booming like a speaker with my 100 dollar sneakers
Baggy black jeans, knapsack, and my beeper…”
They’ve dropped four singles, but two of them have been came hits – Who Got Da Props? and ‘I Got Cha Opin’ (remix). The remix itself was given life with a video (above), new lyrics, and new music – everything that the original didn’t have.
That changed in 2013 when Eminem remade the original, titling it Don‘t Front. It was him paying homage to the crew that showed him love during his early beginnings, which in turn let the world know who he would’ve signed to if he didn’t sign with Dre.
According to AllMusic‘s Vincent Thomas (at the time), this album played a huge role in re-emergence of NY street hiphop, setting the precedence for the west coast dominance to end.
“It set the tone for much of the hip hop to follow. Biggie Smalls suicidal thoughts and Noreaga’s boisterous thuggery both have their roots here. The album marked a turning point in hip hop.”
Even though the album was huge in popularity, the sales unfortunately didnt match, selling a little over 350,000 copies. Despite that fact, it’s still one of the most prominent hiphop albums of today’s time, again – opening up avenues to albums like Nas’s Illmatic, Wu-Tang Clan’s 36 Chambers, Biggie’s Ready To Die, Mobb Deep’s The Infamous, (and so forth) to ‘enta da stage’.
Congratulations to the crew that heavily influenced NY rap in the 90s, and happy 25th!