October 09, 2014

Redman "Whut Thee Album?" (HHC, October 1992)

"I like to build my album up as a movie. When you're listening to me, you're watching me as well. If you get a good focus on what I'm talking about, then - with the drama and shit - it's like a movie." Ruffneck funkster Redman sinks into the big chair and describes the cinematic potential of his gruff, ghetto-flavored debut LP, 'Whut.' A rugged collection of Parliament-style loops and harder-than-hard raps, the album is spliced together with channel-hopping snatches of news reports, mini dramas and murderous dialogue. "I could act my ass off," he boasts.... Who says I can't be the next Mel Gibson or something? Straight out of Newark, "one of the hardest cities on the planet," Redman, with EPMD and K-Solo, is one of the original members of the Hit Squad. He was Erick's roomie for two years and now the pair have formed EAR (Erick and Redman) Productions to produce tracks for the Hit Squad and beyond. Sharing the same hood as Naughty By Nature, Lakim Shabazz, Latifah and a host of upcoming new stars, he's proud of his hometown, and his street-corner background. "I love Newark, my city. Word up! You can take a brother out of Newark but you can't take Newark out of the brother." ... With his strictly Funk Street attitude to hip-hop, Redman steers clear of explicit politics, leaving his hardcore ghetto stylings to speak for themselves. "I leave that messages shit to other people. The bottom line is that politics and racial shit is keepin' some of the rappers employed - cause that's all they talk about. That's cool though, I can't knock anybody how they get paid, but a lotta people just want to hear the funk. Somebody who listens to my album would say 'oh - he's funky, he's nice." - HHC, 1992. This wasn't the best interview, nor album discussion, but it's interesting to know Redman "gained his name when his face swelled up all rosy from a little girl's snowball." Is that verified? If so, I probably shoulda known that by now, huh?