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September 22, 2012 will mark the 20th anniversary of the release of Redman’s classic debut Whut? Thee Album. Redman was originally a DJ for future member of Lords Of The Underground DoItAll AKA Du Kelly. Red just happened to rhyme for EPMD, at Du’s insistence, when they opened for the Long Island duo at a New Jersey club back in 1989. Redman (then DJ Cut Killer) spit some bars that had Erick and Parrish so impressed that they brought the young Reggie Roble onstage to rock with them. It was a while before they’d actually cross paths again due to the fact Redman lost Erick Sermon’s number. Shortly after Redman was kicked out of his home by his mom, he was able to reach Erick by chance and shortly after meeting him again he arranged to move in with Erick in Long Island. The rest was history…

The first time we ever heard Redman, he was a young hungry MC ready to rock rough rhymes. He dropped two memorable guest verses on “Hardcore” and “Brothers On My Jock” from EPMD’s classic 1990 Def Jam debut Business As Usual. Redman traveled with EPMD and watched them as they worked. He was mentored and groomed by Erick Sermon but also came in with his own ideas and direction. During much of the recording of Whut? Thee Album, EPMD were busy crafting their classic LP Business Never Personal.

This meant that Redman was often left alone in the studio to his own devices. The Green Eyed Bandit would come in from time to time to offer direction but Reggie Noble had to figure it out the same way Erick and Parish had to back when they made Strictly Business, just five years prior. The lessons learned alone in the studio during the recording of this album would benefit Redman for his entire career.



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Photo: Redman

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