Former NWA member and Los Angeles legend Ice Cube has fiercely refuted claims that he and his crew were responsible for bringing negativity and destruction to the hip-hop genre.
The debate about NWA’s contribution to the culture arose after a fan insisted that the collective’s music created nothing but trouble for Black and Latino communities, especially in Los Angeles. One user wrote, “Music did play a part with the crack being pumped into our black and Latino neighbourhoods.”
However, Ice Cube and others took it upon themselves to school the user, with Ice Cube fiercely responding, “Bullshit. Crack was in the neighbourhoods a decade before gangsta rap. In the 70s, they called it freebase. So was heroin, weed, Mollys, gangbanging, drive-bys, pimping and hoing, dropping out of school, young girls getting pregnant, cussing and the using the word N*gga. It was all here before NWA.”
The fan’s tweet followed a recent interview with the Brooklyn emcee, Special Ed, on Drink Champs, during which he spoke on Ice Cube’s group, unveiling, “N.W.A. came out, and their shit was hardcore — and I said, ‘see, they can say what they want! But the label didn’t want to market me that way. And I had hard shit.”
He continued, “They didn’t want that. They wanted commercial music. We all wanted to be original. Now, it’s a bandwagon effect. Now, it’s all about cloning. These guys ushered in the age of destruction.”
However, the West Coast former Death Row artist KXNG Crooked also chimed into the debate and sided with Ice Cube, posting, “Let me talk to you, my brother. We did not live in a utopia until Straight Outta Compton dropped. Straight Outta Compton is a masterful, street-conscious album. That’s not glorification. We gotta really listen to it. JAY-Z said, ‘do you really listen to it, or do you skim through it?'”
He concluded, “This destruction has always been here since we touched this soil, and art imitates life, my brother. That’s what happens. Go read The Destruction of the Black Civilization. I don’t think NWA brought the destruction age. I think they highlighted it. That was it.”