Happy Birthday, MC Ren!
MC Ren went from writing half of Eazy E's debut album to being a member of one of the greatest hip-hop groups of all time. With its hyper-realistic portrayal of the Compton streets and Dr. Dre's abrasive production, N.W.A drew national outrage and critical praise with their 1988 debut album, Straight Outta Compton. The influential group disbanded after its second full-length project, Niggaz4Life (also known as EFIL4ZAGGIN), in 1991.
Since then, Dr. Dre became one of the greatest producers of all time. Eazy E was a star before his death from AIDS. Ice Cube put out a few classic albums and became a major actor and businessman in Hollywood. MC Ren wasn't as successful, but his solo career did get off to a good start.
His debut project Kizz My Black Azz is credited as the first rap EP to go platinum. While it wasn't as praised as his groupmates' work, the gold-selling LP Shock of the Hour garnered favorable reviews when it dropped in 1993. But MC Ren was stuck in gangsta rap tropes, which is part of the reason why his career faltered.
MC Ren is still a respected member of the hip-hop community. He recently slammed the most recent trailer for the N.W.A biopic for leaving him out of it.
“Man f--- these bitches at universal pictures leaving me out the movie trailers tryin to rewrite history,” he purportedly tweeted. “When I don't promote this s--- yall know why. When you have bitches work on a hip hop film that don't know s--- about hip hop this is what happens. How the hell u leave me out after all the work I put into them records[?] It's disrespectful to me, my family and most of all my FANS.”
MC Ren's contribution to N.W.A shouldn't be overlooked and we hope that the producers of the film will take notice of that. Hopefully, MC Ren will join Cube and DJ Yella for their reunion performance at the 2015 BET Experience Festival, which takes place in Los Angeles between June 25 and 28.