Friday, July 13, 2007

Boss : Drive By (Rollin Slow remix) (from Deeper 12")







Boss : Drive By (Rollin Slow remix) (Def Jam West, 1993)
Nice & Smooth, Asu, Gangstarr, Bas Blasta, Milo T, Preacher Earl : Down The Line (RAL, 1991)

I'm really a big fan of The Drawing Board work, they shaped what rap records should look like, much like what Reid Miles did with jazz by designing all thoses great Blue Note sleeves. I love their big fonts and how they frame the pictures with letters. For those of you who are not familiar with them, the crew created by Cey Adams and Steve Carr was responsible for almost all the Def Jam artwork until 1999 and countless record sleeves from Cooky Puss to Ready To Die, and many logos for the likes of Hot 97 or Dave Chappelle.

So I had the promo 12" of Deeper for years when I finally bought this retail copy just for the artwork. They both share the same tracklisting, the catalog number is exactly the same but what surprised me it that the credits for the Drive By remix are different. Totally different.

And they're probably both wrong (to some extent).
The promo reads : Produced by MC Serch. Remixed by Jeff Trotter. Recorded at Soundtrack studio, NY.
The retails reads : Produced by Robert Jones. Additional production by Erick Sermon & DJ Premier. Mixed by Jeff Trotter. Recorded at Soundtrack studio, NY.

Strange, don't you think ?

Now what is really surprising is that if you go back to the credits of the original song on the album, the producer of the song is neither Serch, nor Robert Jones. According to the album Drive By was produced and mixed by Stone Tha Lunatic and was recorded in LA.

For those who don't know, Stone Tha Lunatic's real name is Angelo Trotter, also know as Torch and Torcha Chamba. He produced "Wicked" for Ice Cube, "Hounddog" for MC Ren, "Sunbeams" for Volume 10, and if I'm correct he's the uncredited guy who rhymes on Freestyle Fellowship's classic posse cut "Heavyweights" just before Volume 10.

Now, MC Serch as a producer of the song ? Why not, but I've always seen him credited as a co producer, with T-Ray, with Sam Sever, etc.

And could you picture DJ Premier working with Erick Sermon on this remix ? I've seen this remix credited to DJ Premier on some mixtapes and compilations to my surprise. Sorry but I can't picture DJ Premier doing this remix, it doesn't sound like him, at all. Primo sampling the "Humpty Dance" drums ? The saturated bass line ? Those are Erick Sermon trademarks. The only little thing that sound like Primo is the scratch in the intro. Should you get additional production credit for just one scratch ?

One thing that always seems stranged to me is the fact that DJ Premier has produced tracks for every MC on every label from Tommy Boy to Rap-A-Lot but never for Def Jam. I don't know if he has beef with Lyor Cohen or something, but who wouldn't dream of a Redman track produced by Premier or a Primo remix of some PE classic ? What's strange is that he didn't even help his good friends Nice & Smooth when they were working on the trainwreck that was Jewel Of The Nile, even if Gangstarr was credited on Ain't A Damn Thing Changed for Guru’s verse.

UPDATE : Scroll down to the comments to get the facts straight. Thanks to Rob Jones and Angelo Trotter for clearing things up. And thanks to Premier who confirmed to me in an interview that he had nothing to do with this remix.

11 comments:

Big Paul Castellano said...

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Merci d'avance

Anonymous said...

please up that boss deeper radio edit and instrumental

Anonymous said...

Primo DID remix a PE song. I just listened to it on the Def Jam 10th Ann. compilation.

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lace da booze said...

Primo aint ever remixed a PE joint as far as I know. He has done stuff on Def Jam though - Jay Z's 'So Ghetto' and 'Hand It Down' off 'Hard Knock Life'

gangsta said...

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a boss e foda

norris said...

THIS ROBERT "ROBLOW" JONES I AM THE REAL PRODUCER OF DRIVE BYE ON THE BOSS'S ALBUM. I WAS IN JAIL WHEN THE ALBUM WAS FINALLY RELEASED SO EVERYBODY AND THEIR MOMMA JUMPED ON TH CREDITS GOT PAID OFF OF MY SONG I HAVE ONLY RECIVED $5160 TO THIS DAY. NOW I SEE (DJ Premier) IS EVEN MAKING MONEY FROM MY SONG WHEN WILL IT STOP!! THIS IS SOME REAL SHIT I AM BROKE BOSS IS BROKE!! SHOOT US WHAT IS OUR'S PLEASE YOU CAN CONTACT ME @661-208-2004 OR 661-946-9187

angelo trotter said...

This is Angelo "Stone tha Lunatic" Trotter.

To set the record straight. The song on the album is actually a remix. I was hired by Def Jam because the original songwriter Noris "ROBLOW" Jones was unable to complete the song unfortunately due to incarceration.

Let me set Rob straight to that "everybody and their mother" didn't "jump on the credits" and get paid for it.

I was approached by Def Jam specifically to do a "remix." They were in control of the credits (my musicians didn't even get the credit they were supposed to).

And besides my initial fee for the remix, that's all I got paid. I haven't seen one dime off of Boss's Album.

As for everybody else, I don't know what was going on besides Boss's project being way over budget, and rushed to completion.

So again, for the record, Rob "ROBLOW" Jones was the original songwriter for Drive-by. Let me also say that Rob stuck with Boss and Dee through thick and thin and never got the credit he deserved.

But hey, what else is new in the music industry?

angelo trotter said...

This is Angelo "Stone tha Lunatic" Trotter.

This is to set the record straight. The post by Noris is correct. But only in so far as he is the original songwriter for Drive-by.

However, contrary to Robs opinion that "everyone jumped on the credits and got paid," that's simply not true (as far as it relates to me).

Def Jam approached me to do the remix for the album because unfortunately Rob had an unintended stint in the grey bar hotel and was unable to complete the final recording and mix.

As far a "pay" goes, all I received was my fee for the song, and that was it. I've seen no royalties ever from that song or album.

As for everyone else, I can't say whether they got paid or not, I have no idea on that. I would suspect that they haven't. Boss's project was way over budget, and way overdue. Boss and Dee were a handful back in those times and it was hard finding tracks that they liked, not to mention all of the producers Def Jam were trying to stick her with.

Instead of having a main producer to work with them and manage the project to give it a direction, (like Noris was doing with them) Def Jam were looking for "names" to sell the album instead of their talent.

The ladies were tight and were able to pull off a gold album despite the delays and problems. They probably would have sold much more if Def Jam would have made sure she was released while the buzz for them was peaked. They were the tightest female gangster lyricists ever at that time.

rclosure said...

Wow. Hello all. I'm Richard from Chicago. And a die-hard hardcore/west coast '90's hip-hop rap fan. @Angelo, Wow cuz, I had no idea that Robert Jones originally produced that track. I always thought it was you: Torcha Chamba. You're a damn good producer, bro, and that does sound like your work. Robert Jones too is a damn good producer, and wish we (die-hard West coast hip-hop fans) coulda heard more from that brotha, and The Torcha Chamba. Just know y'all fo'eva got fans like me! Even though I'm out the midwest, I've always love West coast G-shit!