LOS ANGELES, CA – While the ’90s were being dominated by the boom-bap of the East Coast and the G-funk gangsta rap of the West Coast, there was a different sound independent of both coasts brewing in the Midwest. Chicago introduced the rapid-fire flow to the game in 1992 with Twista and Crucial Conflict opted for more style than speed in 1993; but in 1994, an unknown quintet from Cleveland would catch the ear of Eazy-E and marry the rapid-fire flow and style together in perfect harmony. Bone Thugs-n-Harmony has been a pillar of the genre for more than two decades. Just two days after the 23rd anniversary of one of the most important albums to come out of the Midwest, Creepin on ah Come Up, group members Bizzy Bone and Krayzie Bone released their collaborative album New Waves until the moniker Bone Thugs. Bizzy Bone recently stopped by DXHQ to talk with the #DXLive team about the album, his son carrying his torch, and his memories of 2Pac and Notorious B.I.G.
On a recent episode of #DXLive, the team debuted a new single and video “Bizzy’s In The House” from Bizzy Bone’s son Lil Bizzy. “He’s been musically inclined since he was a baby,” Bizzy Bone said. “I never had to rock him to sleep. We’d put him on the couch and he’d just rock himself to sleep mumbling words, mumbling rap music. Anything that would come on he would mumble it and emulate it, especially my stuff of course – and his uncles, Bone Thugs. He was born to do this. It’s just good to see him carry on a legacy that I’m still cherishing as we speak.”
During the tumultuous years of the media fueled East Coast vs. West Coast beef, BTNH were one of the few acts that recorded with both 2Pac and Biggie before their untimely demises. Having a unique perspective as someone who was close to both men, Bizzy hasn’t seen either of their biopics. “Nah. I knew Pac. I spent some time with Pac. I like his memory and I like Biggie memory. I didn’t watch the Biggie film either,” Bizzy empathically states. “I like their memory, like the real them, with me. I feel they spirit and I feel they energy [from] the time we got to spend together; even Pun, Aaliyah, [and] Left Eye. I remember all of them. I just keep that in my ticker. [But] I sent a message [to LT Hutton] that if he needed my hands in the film or anything of that nature. I got some acting experience. I can play Yaki. I coulda played Yaki Kadafi real good but he said he didn’t need my assistance or anything of that nature but I did put my hand out there because we was family at one point. But, you know, sometimes people just move on.”
Bizzy & Krayzie Strong: Listen to Bone Thugs new album, New Wavesright here.
Bizzy was able to develop a close-knit relationship with the entire Shakur family and still maintains a friendship with Faith Evans. “With Pac it was just a party,” recalls Bizzy. “It was Thug Passion like he was singing about, I had my Hennessy and Alize in there. He brought the Outlawz in there [and] I met Yaki and everybody. Everybody was in there and it was just a magical moment. Afeni, I met her a few times. Last time I seen Afeni, it was [on] that street before you get down to Saddle Ranch [at Universal Studios Hollywood] and I’m driving down and I seen Afeni. I was really, really close with his mother. She came down to Nashville; I had did a tribute song to him [and] made sure I gave her some money and such. I had a lot of love for Afeni Shakur. [It was] just a blessing. The whole Shakur family I had a great experience with. [With Biggie] It was always cool. Faith, we still friends. My security officer is the one that drove Faith to the hospital after the Vibe [Magazine] party when Big got shot. I had a security team I used to roll around with in L.A. for like two years. Everybody [knew] me for riding around in limos smoking weed. Everybody in L.A. knew me. For two years straight I had the same limo. It was all love. To see them brothers go, though, it was like watching Marvin Gaye, somebody that really, really means something to music [pass away].
Be sure to grab your copy of Bone Thugs’ latest album New Waveson iTunes and check #DXLive every Thursday at 6 p.m. EST/3 p.m. PST And as always for more music and news keep it locked right here on HipHopDX.