The cover of the 1987 album N.W.A and the Posse does not look like something released by one of the most important rap groups of all time. Actually, just looking at the photo, who would believe that some of the guys in this alleyway would change the course of popular music forever less than a year after the flashbulb popped? Who would guess these men were capable of creating their own genre of music, putting their fingerprints on nearly every hip-hop song written in the past 20 years? In fact, this picture is a perfect snapshot of one of the most important scenes in the history of popular music. Stare for a moment and you can see a myth about to be born. That myth, gangsta rap, enabled four guys in this picture — Dr. Dre, Ice Cube, MC Ren and Eazy-E — to titillate and terrify America as Compton-based rap group Niggaz With Attitude. The mythical power of N.W.A certainly doesn’t come from the clock necklaces, the running pants or the Jheri curls. Look to the left, at the bottles of malt liquor, the plain jeans and the black ball caps. Those props (and that’s the right word) hint at what’s going on here, which is the gestation of gangsta rap.
Incredibly enough, the LA Weekly tracked down the stories of the dozen young men who appeared on the sleeve for NWA’s kinda, sorta first album. They don’t do such a great job of letting you know exactly who is who on the cover, but that’s a small gripe in the face of finding out just how absurdly random the shoot was. We’ve had our theories about this photo and the piece pretty much confirms most of them.
You might also like
More from News
21 Savage Executive Produced Soundtrack to New ‘Saw’ Film – Spiral: From The Book of Saw Soundtrack Now Available
The official soundtrack to the new ‘Saw’ film, Spiral, executive produced by 21 Savage, is now available. Spiral: From The Book of …
Love Renaissance (LVRN) Strengthens Creative Team With Vevo’s Former Senior Producer PRIYA MINHAS — Now New Director of Creative Content for LVRN
Today, Love Renaissance (LVRN), the leading Atlanta-based label cultivating cultural bonds and redefining the next generation of hip-hop and R&B,, strengthens their …
Snoop Dogg and Michael Harris Honored at The Black Business Association’s “Virtual Salute to Black Music” Thursday, June 24, 2021
Rap/Hi-Hop Music icon & Philanthropist, Calvin “Snoop Dogg” Broadus and Businessman/Philanthropist Michael Harris are this year’s honorees for the Black Business Association (BBA),“Virtual Salute to Black Music …