T.I. was nick-named Tip after his paternal great-grandfather. When he was signed to LaFace Records in 2001 , he changed it to T.I. out of respect for label-mate Q-Tip , formerly of A Tribe Called Quest.
T.I. released his debut album “I’m Serious” , that same year , which contained the single title-track , which featured reggae singer Beenie Man. “I’m Serious” also featured guest appearances by Pharell Williams , Jazze Pha , Too $hort , Bonecrusher and Lil’ Jon.
After a falling out with LaFace , T.I. formed his own record label Grand Hustle Records , whose roster would eventually include , B.o.B , Killer Mike , 8Ball & MJG , Big Kuntry King and Young Dro just to name a few.
In 2003 , T.I. appeared on Bonecrusher’s smash-hit “Never Scared”. Soon after , T.I. inked a distribution deal with Atlantic Records for Grand Hustle and released his successful sophomore set “Tap Muzik”. The hit album featured production work from Kanye West , David Banner , Jazze Pha , Madvac and DJ Toomp. “Trap Muzik” also featured the hits ; “24’s” , “Big Easy” , “Rubberband Man” and “Let’s Get Away”.
In 2004 , T.I. appeared with Lil’ Wayne on the Destiny’s Child hit “Soldier”. In 2006 , T.I. won several Billboard and BET Music Awards , including Best Male Rap Artist at both ceremonies.
T.I. has released 7 albums to date. Most notably ; 2004’s platinum-selling “Urban Legend” , which featured the hit “Bring ‘Em Out” , 2006’s platinum-selling “King” , which contained the Grammy Award winning-hit “What You Know” and 2008’s chart-topper “Paper Trail” ,which featured his biggest hit-single “Whatever You Like” as well as Live Your Life” , featuring Rihanna , “Dead And Gone” , featuring Justin Timberlake and “Swagger Like Us” featuring Jay-Z , Lil’ Wayne and Kanye West.
T.I. also formed Grand Hustle Films which is currently in production for a reality series. T.I also starred in the film “ATL” , which was produced by Will Smith’s Overbrook Productions. T.I. has also appeared in “American Gangster” and “Takers”.
T.I. also has been involved in several humanitarian initiatives like Hurricane Katrina efforts , working with youths at The Paulding Detention Center in Atlanta , providing scholarships for single parent homes at The Boys And Girls Club Of America , and bicycle giveaways for under-privileged youths in Atlanta.
T.I also owns one of Atlanta’s most popular night-clubs called “Club Crucial”.
In 2010, T.I. rescued a man attempting suicide , who was attemting to jump from an office building in Atlanta.
T.I. is also married to Tameka “Tiny” Cottle of r’n’b’ group Xscape.
Today in 1968 - Willard Christopher "Will" Smith is born in Philadelphia, PA. He will become a rapper at the age of 12 and will be known for his hits Nightmare on My Street, Parents Just Don't Understand and Summertime. In 1990 he will start his acting career with a six-year run as the Fresh Prince of Bel Air. He will go on to become a major motion picture box office attraction, starring in Independence Day, Men In Black 1 and 2, Bad Boys 1 and 2, Ali (Oscar Nomination), I Robot, Hancock, Pursuit of Happyness (Oscar Nomination), Enemy of the State, 7 Pounds and I Am Legend just to name a few.
Sept.28th – After disbanding Boogie Down Productions , KRS-One releases his debut solo album “Return Of The Boom Bap” on Jive Records , on this day in 1993.The album features production by DJ Premier , Kid Capri , Showbiz and KRS one himself. The set also contained the hits “Outta Here” and “Sound Of Da Police”.
Sept.30th – Legendary producer, d.j. and radio host Marley Marl was born Marlon Williams in Queens , New York , on this day in 1962.
Marl was first introduced to the hip-hop world in 1983 co-hosting “The Rap Attack” on New York’s WBLS 107.5 fm , alongside the late Mr. Magic. Marl would later host other radio shows on Hot 97 and Power 105.1 , also both in New York City respectively. One of those radio programs was called “Private Radio” which he co-hosted with Pete Rock and K-Def.
Marl , however would achieve his biggest fame as one of the most influential hip-hop producers of all time. Marl began his career in music production in the early 80’s as an in house producer at one of the earliest independent New York hip-hop labels called Tuff City.
The first record Marl would produce would be “Sucker D.J.’s” by his then girlfriend Crystal Smith , who used the stage name ; Dimples D. Marl’s next big record would be “Roxanne’s Revenge” by Roxanna Shante , an answer record to U.T.F.O’s classic smash-hit “Roxanne , Roxanne” , thus sparking the famous “Roxanne wars” , which produced several answer records by various artists.
During this time Marl also put out records of his own under the moniker NYC Cutter. Soon after , Marl founded Cold Chillin’ Records , which for the next few years released classic singles and albums by Big Daddy Kane , Biz Markie , Masta Ace , Kool G. Rap & DJ Polo , Craig G. , Roxanne Shante and his cousin M.C. Shan , whose classic cult hit “The Bridge” , sparked the famous musical war with the South Bronx’s Boogie Down Productions crew.
These artists made up The Juice Crew and released the classic 1988 posse single “The Symphony” , which Marley of course produced. Around this time , Marl would also assist in the recording of Eric B. And Rakim’s debut album “Paid In Full” , which was recorded at Marl’s home studio.
Marl is also credited with being the first hip-hop artist to utilize digital sampling when he lifted “Impeach The President” by The Honey Drippers for M.C. Shan’s “The Bridge”. This would forever change the way hip-hop beats were made and the way records were produced. Marl was also one of the first producers to comb through James Brown’s entire music catalogue in search of break-beats that would now fuel most rap hits.
Legal matters over ownership of Cold Chillin’s catalogue with the distributor caused Marl to move away from the label in the 90’s but his demand as a hit-making producer grew. Marl would go on the produce hit albums for artists outside of Cold Chillin’ , like LL Cool J , TLC , Lords Of The Underground and King Tee.
The legal battle for Cold Chillin’s catalogue would be eventually resolved in the courts , with Marl retaining ownership of all material ever recorded for the label.
Later on Marl would produce records by Capone-N-Noreaga , Da Youngstas , Fat Joe and a solo Rakim.
Marl has released 4 albums of his own as well as collaboration albums with KRS-One and Craig G. from 1988 to 2010. In addition Marl has also contributed to several compilation collections.
Marl is considered one of the most important producers and figures in hip-hop history.
1991...........one of the last great years before the counterinsurgency in hip hop took over with Dr. Dre's Chronic and we started embracing black death and disrespect.
October 3rd- Public Enemy released their platinum-selling 4th album “Apocalypse ‘91” – The Enemy Strikes Black on Def Jam Records , on this day in 1991.
Classics tracks like “Shut ‘Em Down” , “Nighttrain” and a remake of “Bring The Noise” with heavy metal bad Anthrax , prompted hip-hop heads to call this set the “birth of hardcore rap”.
Album cuts like “Lost At Birth” , “Rebirth” and “Move” would bring underground hip-hop to a whole other level.
The album produced the hit single “Can’t Truss It”. Pete Rock’s remixes to singles like “Nighttrain” and “Shut ‘Em Down” also ushered in the era of “the hip-hop remix”, which would see rap singles flipped entirely from their original versions which is common place in the industry until this day.
“Apocalypse ‘91” also saw Gary “G” Wiz Rinaldo come to the forefront of The Bomb Squad production sound in regards to P.E. records , bringing in a heavy drum influence as well as meshing it with melodic horn lines while all the while keeping P.E.’s explosive sound.
Oct 5th – SLIMKID3 of Pharcyde was born Trevant Jermaine Hardson in Los Angeles , California , on this day in 1970.
After recording 3 successful and critically-acclaimed albums with the innovative L.A. based Pharcyde , SLIMKID3 went solo and would occasionally used the stage name Tre Hardson in reference to his birth name.
Shortly after SLIMKID3 put together the live band Faqawi with whom he toured. Faqawi blended early school hip-hop with classic soul and r’n’b.
In 2000 SLIMKID3 released the album “The Legend OF Phoenix” , a name he briefly performed under. In 2002 he released the album “Liberation” on his own Flying Baboon Records which was followed up by 2006’s “SLIMKID3’s Café”. SLIMKID3 also produced actor Brian Austin Green’s debut album “One Stop Carnival” in 1996. SLIMKID3 has also collaborated with KRS-One , 311 and Korn.
Oct 7th – DJ Q-Bert was born Richard Quitevis in San Francisco , California , on this day in 1969.
Q-Bert began his career in 1989 with Mix Master Mike and DJ Apollo in a group called Shadow Of The Prophet , later changing their name to FM20.
In 1992 FM20 were invited by legendary b-boy Crazy Legs to join his famed Rock Steady Crew and tour with them as The Rock Steady DJ’s , which garnered the group much attention.
The same year the group took 1st prize at The Disco Mix Club World Championships in the group category.It would be the 1st of several DMC titles Q-Bert would take as part of a group or as a solo d.j..
Q-Bert would later form the Invisibl Skratch Piklz which would consist of Mike and Apollo as well as Dj Disk , Shortkut , DJ Flare , Yogafrog , D-Styles and future Kanye West D.j. A-Trak. The Invisbl Skratch Piklz presented themselves as a band and performed as such with each dj providing different instrumental parts of songs with their turn-table work.
Q-Bert has released2 solo albums ; 1994’s “Demilition Pumpkin Squeeze Musik” and 1998’s “Wave Tistas” which became an animated feature in 2001.
Q-Bert has worked with Vestax to develop an all scratching instrument in one with both the turntable and cross-fader mixer in the same component. Ortofon has also put out the “Q-Bert turn-table cartridge.
In 2009 , Q-Bert launched the online “Q-Bert Skracth University”. Q-Bert has also been credited with inventing the world’s famous “crab scratch”.
Oct.8th – C.L. Smooth was born Corey Brent Penn in New Rochelle , New York , on this day in 1968.
C.L. Smooth quietly entered the hip-hop scene in 1991 along with producer , d,j, and fellow m.c. Pete Rock when the 2 formed a duo and released their under-rated debut e.p. “All Souled Out”on Elektra Records.
But the silence wouldn’t last for long when the Dynamic Duo released their classic debut full-length album “Mecca And The Soul Brother” the following year. The album fueled by Rock’s horn laden production and Smooth’s clear articulate delivery became an instant fan favorite. “Mecca And The Soul Brother” also contained the duo’s biggest hit ever , the classic “They Reminisce Over You”(T.R.O.Y.) , an ode to the late Heavy D. And The Boyz dancer Trouble “T”-Roy , who had died in a freak accident a year prior.
In 1993 , Smooth along with Rock produced and appeared on Run-DMC’s big comeback single “Down With The King”.
Smooth recorded one more album with Rock called “The Main Ingredient” , released in 1994 before the 2 went their separate ways.
In 2004 , the 2 reunited and recorded several tracks together but released no album.
In 2006 , Smooth released his debut solo album “American Me” and followed that up with 2007’s “The Outsider”.
In 2010 , Smooth and Rock again reunited and headlined the “Clean Energy Tour” , which went through California and whose focus was voter mobilization.
Over the years , Smooth has collaborated with the likes of DJ Kush , Public Enemy and J.R. Writer to name just a few.
Oct.11th – M.C. Lyte was born Lana Michelle Moorer in Brooklyn , New York , on this day in 1971.
Lyte was signed to First Priority Records in 1987 and released her classic debut album “Lyte As A Rock” the following year , becoming the 1st solo female rapper to do so. The classic album featured such hip-hop classics such as “10% Dis” , “I Cram To Understand U”(Sam) , one of the first rap songs about crack addiction , and the hit single “Paper Thin”. Her brothers Milk Dee and Gizmo , who made up the duo Audio Two also appeared on the album as well.
Lyte released her sophomore set “Eyes On This” in 1989. The album produced 2 more Lyte classics ; “Cha Cha Cha” and “Cappucino”.
Lyte has released 5 albums since then , most notably 1991’s “Act Like You Know” which contained the classic “Poor Georgie”,
1993’s “Ain’t No Other” which featured the hit single “Ruffneck” and 1996’s “Bad As I Wanna B” , which featured the smash-hits “Cold Rock A Party”(Featuring Missy Elliott) and “Keep On Keepin’ On” produced by Jermaine Dupri and featuring Xscape.
Throughout her career Lyte has collaborated with a slew of artist like Janet Jackson , Brandy , The Roots as well as appearing on the posse track “Sticka” featuring Ice-T , Ice Cube and Yours Truly off of Terminator X.’s 1994 album “Super Bad”.
Lyte is also an accomplished actress appearing in several films such as “Plays’s Ball” , “A Luv Tale” , “Fly By Night” , “Civil Brand” and “Train Ride”.
Lyte has also done extensive television appearing on “New York Undercover” , “In The House” , “Half & Half” , “The District” and “Moesha” to name a few.
In 2006 Lyte was honored at VH1’s Hip Hop Honors annual gala where fellow lady m.c.’s like Da Brat , Remy Ma and Lil’ Kim performed some of her biggest hits.