I’m back and this time, I’m "remixing" the Geto Boys. Check out my blog to find out my favorite Geto Boy tracks and the lesson all up-and-coming artists should learn from this Unsung episode!
Controversy Behind the GETO BOYS
There’s no doubt that when you’re one of the reasons a "Parental Advisory" sticker exists, you clearly have earned the title as one of the most ‘controversial’ rap groups EVER!!!!! Known for putting the “South" on hip hop’s map while paving the way for other southern hip hop acts, the Geto Boys vivid story-telling gave their fans a front-row seat to their surroundings in graphic detail.
On this Unsung episode, Willie D poses a comparison of Geto Boys music to any horror movie or an action-packed ‘gangsta’ movie saying it’s no different than watching Goodfellas or Scarface. To be honest, he has a VALID point BUT …. unfortunately, the Geto Boys music comes from their personal experiences, and overly enhanced fantasies, combined with real life news stories ; and the movies are just actors playing a role. The Geto Boys saw their music as entertainment, like that of a movie. Bushwick Bill put it, "We’re informing you that life has pitfalls and traps, what are u gonna do with it ?"
SPINDERELLA on the Popularity of the GETO BOYS
Former Geto Boys DJ/Producer Ready Red added “we loved those kind of movies, and we’re heavily influenced by cult classics like Scarface.” In Red’s production, he would even incorporate sound bites from the movie noting, the reason they didn’t get sued for using Al Pacino’s voice, was because Al was a fan! Well, Al wasn’t alone!!!! The more opposition and negative media coverage, the more Geto Boys grew in popularity. It seemed like the attention from the naysayers, political figures and activists only fueled the Gheto Boys fire. In the growing era of ‘Gangsta’ Hip Hop, most positive rap got little or no recognition, but being ‘true to the streets’ did!!!!!
It’s obvious that members in the group was going through IT!!!!!!! Watching this unfold on Unsung, I wondered if the business behind Geto Boys was more important than their actual lives??!??? The more out of control things got the more attention the group got. Was this becoming the end goal?
SPINDERELLA on the Music & the Infamous Album Cover
I became a fan when "We Can’t Be Stopped‘" dropped. My favorite song of that very successful 3rd album of course was "Mind Playin’ Tricks on Me." Besides the engaging groove of the Isaac Hayes sample, their personal tales intrigued me.
Back then as a DJ you would record shop which means to look at the album cover and purchase. The infamous Geto Boys album cover was a stop-dead-in-your-place-jaw-dropper upon sight and I can tell you even 20+ years later, it’s still hard to look at that cover!!!
And now, thanks to Unsung, we know the STORY BEHIND IT- WOW!!!!! The hardcore fact of the matter is that this was no made up snap-shot of a glorified horror movie and that this was the literal truth of the Geto Boys life at that time. I was blown away to learn after watching this Unsung episode that this literal photo session was conjured up as Bushwick Bill lay on his death-bed. This was keeping it way to real!!!! In my opinion, the shock factor was beyond the meter!!! I’d have to co-sign with DJ Ready Red refusing involvement with that cover but that’s my two cents!!!!
SPINDERELLA on 4 Lessons to Learn From the Geto Boys
OLD SCHOOL PIC: Spinderella With Geto Boy’s J. Prince
This Unsung episode of the Geto Boys was nostalgic, very informing and disturbing at the same time — reminding me of the good, the bad and the ugly of this business?!!!! Let this be a lesson to upcoming rap artists – FOR REAL!
#1 – Yes you can put out dope records
#2 – Yes you can make it to the top the charts
#3 – Yes you can start a whole new genre of music and
#4 – Yes you can sell a gang of records and be extremely popular
but the question is, should success come your way, at what cost will you pay?
Reflecting back, the Geto Boys music was the soundtrack to life to many young black men as harsh as it was, IT WAS!!!!
Spinderella AKA SPIN
Follow me on Twitter @Spindeezy
Check out Spinderella discuss the Geto Boys repin’ the south in her video blog DIARY OF THE DJ – WATCH HERE:
TELL US: DID THE GETO BOYS PAY TO HIGH OF A COST FOR FAME?