Guest Blogger w/Kevin Beacham

This is a personal request from Blockhead and Aesop but I figured I post it up here for everyone to check out. These are the recordings I have from Shakespeare The One Man Riot.

Here’s what’s in the file: http://www.sendspace.com/file/k4leja

1)Live In The Car Freestyles Thru a Hand Held Recorder:
This takes place in a parked car in
Zion, IL in ‘86. It’s Shakespeare (then known as Doc Rock), this thug rapper named Lil P, J.G. (A guy around the way who claimed he was part of the official Stet Posse…he even had the jacket), and LA (my partner in a crew called Wildstyle). The highlight here is Shakespeare and Lil P getting into a friendly battle that nearly turns to a knife fight…pretty classic stuff…ha.

2)Freestyle Session 11-27-87:
This takes place at DJ Captain 2 Fresh’s house (who is on the turntables) and has His Majesti (Shakespeare and Drew Rock who later became Cyco and formed Insane Poetry), JG, and Wildstyle (featuring a 17 year old me as MC Coolie). By now His Majesti had their record deal on Egyptian Empire and where just visiting Shakespeare’s family back home and called me up to drop verses. This was my first time seeing the Roland 808 in person and it blew my mind and I had to get one! (Finally did like 3 years later). Shakespeare is clearly the star here, he kills it constantly. I broke it up into three tracks since it’s pretty long (a whole side of a tape pretty much and that’s the edited down version…ha).

3)His Majesti 12″ (Egyptian Empire ‘88):
This was a 3 song single that was supposed to lead to an album that never dropped. All three cuts are fresh. They had an ill style..real raw…some boom bap mixed with the abstract. “Armed and Dangerous”, MMOB Chronicles” and “Slow And Ill”.

4)Rodney O & Joe Cooley-Roll Call (Hip Hop Mafia):
This is from the ‘91 album “Get Ready To Roll”. Both Rodney O and His Majesti left Egyptian Empire and ended went to Nastymix (well, Insane Poetry was on Nastymix, Shakespeare was just down and I believe there was talk of doing a project with him later. They both had the same management, Darkhorse Management). Shakespeare leads it off with the best verse on the track

5)Insane Poetry-Stalkin’ With The Nightbreed (Grim Reality LP ‘91):
This is the posse cut on the album that also has KMC. Shakespeare is in rare form with classic lines like “Bending Ni***s” like a paper back book” and my personal favorite, “Cut a body so small one bag can hold 3 men”….what?!?! ha.

6)Shakespeare and The Lumberjacks-Preacher’s Daughter (Scotti Brothers ‘93): Shakespeare got this deal in ‘93 and by now he was still cynical but not as dark. I’m really curious to see how this album would have came out. We never heard more than one single because; 1)Scotti Bros apparently had no idea how to market rap (they also have an unreleased Craig G album from this era) and 2)Shakespeare had some sort of experience that led to him becoming a born again Christian. He eventually became a preacher!! He still makes music in a group with his wife called Mista and Mrs Taylor and do a lot of youth ministry related programs. I haven’t talked to him in a few years though.

For those that care, to give a touch more history, I went to High School (North Chicago) with Shakespeare. When I first moved to the area every time someone find out that I Mced they would say, ‘You have to meet Doc Rock’. Finally his brother arranged the meeting after school by the library. This is in ‘86 I kicked my lil rhyme with some harmonizing and playful battle rhymes…something real “cute”….ha. He then proceeded to kick one of the hardest rhymes I ever heard in my life! He was right up there with LL, TLA Rock, etc…. to me. The only thing I remember him saying was something like, “My rhymes are so fresh they cleanse the air like Lysol!”. That night I went home and wrote my best rhyme I ever had and when we ciphered again he was impressed and we would cipher semi-regularly. He graduated that year and went to LA to “make it as a rapper”. I remember the last day of school they let him rap on the school intercom….ha. Anyway, he went to LA with no real plan, not even a place to stay and just….started rapping I guess. Eventually he changed his name to Shakespear, hooked up with Drew and formed His Majesti and got signed to Egyptian Empire. Along the way he had a battle with The World Class Wreckin’ Cru because they had an MC named Shakespeare (after Cli-N-Tel left) and they supposedly battled for the name….

I’ve been trying for years to get more of the His Majesti demos because I know they had some more. They may have even finished the album. I know they had tracks like “Paisley Straight Jacket” (that may have been the album title to), “Lone Ranger With A 13″ Clip”, etc… they were on some next level illness….ha

All In all, Shakespeare was a big influence and inspiration to me from his talent and the way he went out and just followed his dream. He also has one of the illest voices! I’m also rather confident that he is one of, if not “the” true pioneer of that Dark Style of hip hop that became known as Horrorcore”. You can hear it in his ‘87 freestyles with lines like, “People say I’m possessed just because I have a guillotine engraved on my chest” or referring to himself as the “two legged butcher knife”…ha. Anyway, enjoy the music and my rambling on… 🙂

Check me out @ http://www.myspace.com/djnikoless

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