Exclusive: Looking at "Time 4 Sum Aksion" vs. "How I Could Just Kill A Man" and "Da Rockwilder" vs. "Hand On The Pump," Red has a lot to say about his homies from the west, and on trends in Hip Hop.
Last month, HipHopDX interviewed Redman in Def Jam Records' New York offices. The veteran Newark, New Jersey emcee/producer spoke about the decline of sampling and deejay-minded music. Redman, who came into the industry as a deejay for Lords of the Underground's DoItAll, has made some of his biggest hits off of records, connected to other classics. Red's 1993 hit single "Time 4 Sum Aksion" pulled a chorus from Cypress Hill's hit from two years earlier, "How I Could Just Kill A Man." With numerous 1990s singles pulling from each other, such as Blahzay Blahzay's "Danger" taking from Jeru The Damaja's "Come Clean," or Jay-Z's "Dead Presidents" borrowing from Nas' "The World Is Yours," Redman spoke about the importance of inter-related records.
"I added that to my show. Cypress Hill's ['How I Could Just Kill A Man'] into ['Time 4 Sum Aksion']," Red said, after being asked about his catalog connection to Cypress Hill. Still a deejay hobbyist, Redman then spoke about the decline of that in Hip Hop. "That ended because we got more viral. We got more media coverage on this whole Hip Hop game now. Samples caused a major problem. Back in the day, you could snatch a record, snatch it right quick, and you ain't have to clear shit. Now, you gotta clear every-fucking thing."
Samples have affected Redman's music-making, which is evident in Red straying from the craft on his recently-released Redman Presents...Reggie. Looking at his 2009 release, the Def Squad emcee said, "For example, on the Red & Meth album, Blackout! 2, I had to take out something I said that related to a verse on another artist's album. I [interpolated] something Snoop [Dogg] said on [Doggystyle], and I had to send [the album] in. The sample clearance [service] told me I had to take it out 'cause [Snoop] didn't own that publishing to that album. It goes so deep." The emcee expressed his displeasure with the politics of the contemporary Rap industry. "It's so fucking anal, this Rap game. But you gotta deal with it."
In September, B-Real told HipHopDX that Redman's bandmate, Erick Sermon (and PMD) had a lot to do with Cypress Hill's acceptance in the east coast. "When I started meeting all these other rappers that I respected, the first thing that they would say was, 'Oh, I heard y’all shit through EPMD. They played it for us and we were bugging out.' Ice Cube told me that, Busta Rhymes told me that, [DJ] Premier, the list goes on of the motherfuckers that were put on to us by EPMD," said B-Real.
Interestingly enough, Redman paused to acknowledge Cypress Hill for his own successes. "I wanna thank B-Real from Cypress Hill. He played a major part in my career, as far as the 'Time 4 Sum Aksion' sample and shit. Then, [B-Real gave me] the 'La, La, La' on 'Da Rockwilder.'" Red is referring to the chorus from Cypress' "Hand On The Pump" that he and Method Man re-introduced years later on their trademark anthem.
Redman Presents...Reggie is in stores now.