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News Guerilla Black The New Biggie
Guerilla Black The New Biggie PDF Print E-mail
Written by Westside ID160   
Wednesday, 06 October 2004 21:59

Hip-hop's newest emcee Guerilla Black sounds like the late Biggie Smalls on the microphone, but also the Compton kid's speaking voice is that same B.I.G. baritone on the phone as well, only he doesn''t take the deep breaths in between sentences.

“I am definitely a fan of B.I.G.'s.,” Black, 27, says “He was one of the biggest icons in music along with Tupac. People compare me to B.I.G., but I feel like I am not even three-fourths of where dude was.”

Lots of people agree with Black, but there are many hip-hoppers who take offense at the similarities between B.I.G. and Black.

In the world of hip-hop, stealing someone's style is a major offense and can make or break a career. Best example: 50 Cent and Ja Rule. 50 murdered Rule's career by calling him a fake thug who sings more than he raps. Now 50 Cent does his fair share of hook-singing and running around shirtless for the ladies. And when Ja Rule first came on the scene, it seemed like he was trying to sound like DMX and look like Tupac.

Black says Biggie and Tupac are irreplaceable, but comparisons to them in the world of hip-hop will come and go.

“The only thing I know for sure is I won''t be the first or the last cat to be compared to a legend,” Black says. “No one will do it on the level of the late, great Biggie and Pac. There will always be a void in hip-hop, people miss those voices.”

But it's going to take a lot more than physical and vocal likeness to give footing to comparisons between 27-year old Guerilla Black and Biggie. Yes, Black is a chubby man with a Hershey complexion like Biggie, and his voice is just as deep and gripping, but beyond that, there isn''t much to compare. It's more like the comparisons between Fabolous and Loon to Mase, where the only thing they share is the super slow rhyme flow.

For Black, the comparisons just mean that his rhymes are nice.

“Well, a lot of people wouldn''t have a lot to say if I was really wack,” he says. “At the end of the day, I am Guerilla, I am from Compton and all I can do is be me.”

After years of hardships (gang affiliation, unsuccessful deal with Ice-T, his wife died of meningitis), his debut album on Virgin records, “Guerilla City,” came out last week (guerillablack.com) and it's hoped it will kill comparisons and introduce people to Guerilla.

One complete listen to Black's album gives clarity to one thing: He's not trying to be Brooklyn's finest. He is a West Coast emcee, maintaining West Coast style from the slang to the beats.

“People haven''t had a West Coast lyricist in a long time,” says Black, who thinks Ice Cube was the last West Coast lyricist. “I am making universal music anyone could listen to, whether you are from the Midwest, the East Coast, dirty South or the West Coast. I am making creative and conceptual songs.”

Where Biggie's mellifluent delivery gave him the ability to rhyme about killing someone's mother and loving the ladies without anyone being turned off from one song to the next, Guerilla Black doesn''t quite have the charm yet.

In addition, Biggie was an innovator. He single-handedly stole the shine from the West Coast movement that was taking over hip-hop in the early ''90s and shifted hip-hop into the jiggy movement. He brought the bling-bling to the scene and made it all right for someone hardcore to dress up and he also dispelled the myth that making songs for the ladies made you soft.

Guerilla Black's not trying to take hip-hop in a different direction, he's trying to carve out a niche for himself.

“I always feel like I have to keep working, I am never satisfied with myself,” Black says. “I describe my style as old school and new school, it's always growing. But I am no where near where I want to be. There is so much work I want to do.”

Source: KansasCity

News Guerilla Black The New Biggie

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