Actor extraordinaire and son of gangsta rap Ice Cube, O’Shea Jackson Jr, has most definitely risen to fame quickly in Hollywood. From the portrayal of his own father in ‘Straight Outta Compton’ to his fantastic performance in ‘Den of Thieves’, the young actor has undoubtedly featured heavily on our screens in the past decade. However, considering his father is gangsta rap legend Ice Cube, wouldn’t it be interesting to know what kind of music the young actor listened to as a child? Well, in an interview with the magazine NME, he revealed the first album he ever bought.
Speaking about the music he listened to growing up, he disclosed that the first song he remembers hearing is ‘Happy Birthday to You’. Quite an understandable answer, the actor, reassuring himself of his recollection, stated, “That seems legit. Second [birthday], had to be. I was a pretty weird kid, I’d sit in the house and think all day. You see your family members, you see your cousins and you got a whole day dedicated to you – at that age you’re not even really concerned about what the day is. You get cake, you get gifts.”
Reminiscing on his childhood, Jackson Jr spoke to NME about the first live show he ever saw as well, which was a show his father performed abroad. Struggling to recall the event, the actor divulged, “I can’t pinpoint the venue or the date, but I’m 1000% sure it was an Ice Cube concert. I’m a tour baby. I was two years old, going around the world, going to London and Germany on tour with my dad, sitting in my mum’s lap on the side of the stage.”
Detailing his experiences growing up always at his father’s performances, Jackson Jr. further explained, “I eventually ended up joining him on stage when I was 18, when I turned 18 is when he kind of put me to work. I was helping build the stage, helping break it down, in charge of towels, going to soundchecks, taking bags, anything to give me that feel of what it is to really be on the grind out there. The music tour life is not for everybody, it’s hard. But when you get home and you sit around for too long you want to get back on the road, start to get the itch. That’s a beautiful feeling, I miss it to this day. Music has been such a key piece of my life, without it I wouldn’t be here talking to you right now.”
However, with all this information, there was still one important piece missing, so when finally asked, the rapper told the interviewer that the first album he ever bought was Malpractice by New Jersey rapper Redman. Reflecting on where he bought the CD and his mother’s reaction, Jackson revealed, “My grandma used to take us to this store called the Warehouse, and that’s where you would get your CDs and DVDs. Shout out to the Warehouse, rest in peace. It’s not there anymore, but that was where I bought Redman’s Malpractice. I was a real big fan of the single on that album, ‘Let’s Get Dirty (I Can’t Get In Da Club)’. The energy of that song, the bass. I’m a big gamer, and as a kid, I loved that he mentioned PlayStation 2 in the song. Boy, are there some songs on that album that I probably shouldn’t have had. But I come from a rap family, so it’s cool to me that as a kid, my first album was Redman’s Malpractice. My mum was always breaking down songs to me, just to make sure I knew what I was saying, knew what I was talking about. If you’re out in public and somebody catches you slipping with your words that you’re saying, it could backfire on you, so she was always one to educate me on the power of the words that are being said in a song. Redman is a dope lyricist, but the beat drew something out of me, it drew a level of excitement out of me.”
So the first album O’Shea Jackson Jr. ever bought was the 2001 album Malpractice by East Coast rapper Redman. Quite the surprise.