Friday, December 08, 2006


I'm gonna save all the bullshit on this post, everyone knows how and who started this label. Everyone knows the shit that went on with Cube, Dre and the D.O.C. and everyone knows that Eazy's right hand man was Jerry Heller who has been continuously dissed for being a white Jew. Well, Jerry has recently wrote a book called 'Ruthless' where apparently he talks alotta shit about what happened back in the early Ruthless days or at least what he wants people to believe happened. After Eazy passed away in '95 he left his label to his widdow Tomica Wright who has pretty much driven the label down the drain. Ruthless was running solid for two or three years after Eazy's death but since then relied pretty much solely on Bone Thugs N' Harmony with allmost no new blood signing to the label. In 2002 Ruthless released the 'Impact Of A Legend' Eazy E album which was flawless with nice features and crazy production, mainly due to Rhythm D. Anyway, this post is about the music itself and not the political shit that went on. In Ruthless' golden era they released some of the dopest albums ever like the D.O.C.'s 'No One Can Do It Better', Penthouse Players Clique's 'Paid The Cost' the Above The Law classics and obviously the N.W.A.'s etc.

Ruthless also had a bunch of lesser known artists signed like Pistol, Tab & Da Villon, H.W.A., Menajahtwa, Yomo & Maulkie, Jimmy Z, Brownside, Blood Of Abraham as well as some more known artists like JJ Fad, Kokane, Frost and Atban Klan who were unknown at the time but are now a huge pop group known as the Black Eyed Peas, infact on Eazy's '92 E.P. '5150 Home 4 Tha Sick', Black Eyed Peas Will I Am has a dope verse on 'Merry Muthafuckin X-Mas'.

Out of those groups some are pretty wack while others are heavily under rated, Penthouse Players for example released 'Paid The Cost' in '92, every single track has crazy production and and skilled flows. They were only signed by Eazy because he didn't sign their friend DJ Quik when he had the chance, something Eazy always regreted so he took the Clique, Quik did some work on the album and also features on a track with Eazy. The Penthouse Players who consisted of Playa Hamm and Tweed Cadillac also featured on the Tresspass soundtrack with 'Im A Playa'. Tweed Cadilac later joined the Mackadelics and released 'Exposed To The Game' in '96 while Playa Hamm released his solo 'Layin Hands' in 2001. Disapointing considering the quality of 'Paid The Cost'.

I always thought that Sureno Chicano rappers Brownside released a couple of twelves on Ruthless, although apparently Toker from the group went to high school with Eazy so I guess it's not that strange. The other two members of the group are Wicked and the late Danger who was killed in a drive by in South Central in 1997. Toker as well as having a group member pass away also lost his brother and sister and is currently serving a 25 to life sentence. The group only released the tracks 'Gang Related' and 'Eastside Drama' on Ruthless but did drop a couple of albums later. One of my favourite tracks is 'Vatos In The Varrio' which is a 'Boyz N Tha Hood' cover.

I Don't know how Frost found himself on Ruthless but he did drop two pretty dope albums on the label, the first being 'Smile Now, Die Later' and the second being 'When Hell A Freezes Over'. Frost has had a real diverse all over the place career, starting out in the early 80's in a crew with Ice T dropping the classic 'Terminator' to releasing an album on Virgin, joining Latin Alliance with Mellow Man Ace and A.L.T. to going back solo, Ruthless, Thump and just the other month he was named Vice President of the Music Division of Goldmark Industries. No one can deny he's been in the game for a while.

Pamona's Above The Law were one of the first groups signed to Eazy's label and released 'Livin Like Hustlers' in 1990 consisting of KMG the Illustrator, Go Mack, DJ Total K-Oss and Cold 187um l.k.a. Big Hutch. They then released the 'Vocally Pimpin' EP which was pretty much just remixes before Go Mack and Lay Law left the group. This left the rest to release 'Black Mafia Life' in '92 that pretty much started off G Funk although Dr Dre got the credit for it because his 'Chronic' album that came out later that year got way more hype, this was why the 'Dont Bite The Phunk' Dre diss track was made on Kokanes 'Fumk Upon A Rhyme' album. A.T.L. also released 'Uncle Sams Curse' on Ruthless but after Eazy's death they left and released 'Time Will Reveal' on Tommy Boy, Legends and Forever. Cold 187um has also released a couple of solo albums under the name of Big Hutch as well as production for Ruthless and then Death Row. Big Hutch and DJ K-Oss were both released from prison this year on two seperate drug sentences.

MC Ren after a start in NWA then doing a side project with the late DJ Train on CPO had a successful solo career and signed to Paris' Guerilla Funk Records a couple of years ago. He was set to record a new album under the name Darth Ren but has decided to quit rapping for some reason and had the very little matterial he did record for Guerilla Funk released on the G.F.R. compilation 'Hard Truth Soldiers' that came out earlier this year.
N.W.A. was obviously the main brand name behind Ruthless Records, The group that started out with a line up that didn't include MC Ren but the D.O.C. and the Arabian Prince who was one of the critters in the comedy group Bobby Jimmy And The Critters, he got replaced in the group and started a solo career releasing 'Brother Arab' and 'Wheres My Bythches'. Macola that was the distributor for Ruthless got bought out by Priority and N.W.A. and Ruthless Records pretty much took over west coast hip hop for a couple of years. This post could go on forever and in about six different directions but thats about all I could be bothered touching on. Rest In Peace Eazy.

Eazy E - 24 Hours To Live
MC Ren - Final Frontier
Above The Law - Black Superman
Kokane - Shit, Goddamm
Penthouse Players Clique ft DJ Quik, Eazy E, AMG - Trust No Bitch


travis said...

That Kokane is good shit!

Anonymous said...

R.I.P. Eazy-E

Anonymous said...

Big up for the site! If you love classic

BULLANT said...

Yeah, nice shit on there man, Finnesse, Whodini etc. Good work.