Hip hop's golden age: Where are they now?
3rd Bass released successful albums in 1989 and 1991.
Hip hop’s “golden age” — spanning from approximately 1986 to 1997—spawned unprecedented musical creativity and innovation.
By the time the era ended, hip hop was a multi-billion dollar business to be reckoned with.
But, for every Run-D.M.C.—whose groundbreaking “Raising Hell” album marked the start of the golden age—there are dozens of talented artists who only managed to make one or two hits before disappearing.
It’s been almost 20 years since that golden age ended, so what happened to some of those former stars?
The trio, made up of MC Serch, Prime Minister Pete Nice and DJ Daddy Rich (also known as DJ Richie Rich), released successful albums in 1989 and 1991. Ironically, their most successful single, “Pop Goes the Weasel” was about targeting rappers who seek commercial appeal.
MC Serch left the group in 1992 and Pete Nice and Daddy Rich released an album in 1993 that failed to live up to 3rd Bass’s success.
Since then, DJ Daddy Rich has produced music for various artists and occasionally DJs in Phoenix, where he currently lives.
Pete Nice — real name Peter Nash — wrote a book about baseball history in 2003 before opening McGreevy’s, a Boston sports bar, in 2008.
In 2014, the News reported that he pleaded guilty to misdemeanor tax fraud in New York.
MC Serch released two solo albums after leaving 3rd Bass. He hosted morning radio shows in Detroit and briefly hosted a Jerry Springer-like talk show, “Serch” in 2014.
After forming at Virginia State University in the late 1980s, the duo of Dray (also known as Krazy Drayz) and Skoob had one of the most distinctive sounds of the 1990s.
Part of the “Hit Squad” collective, along with Redman, EPMD, Keith Murray, and K-Solo, Das Efx’s unique lyrical style influenced a generation of rappers beginning with their debut album, “Dead Serious,” in 1992.
After “Dead Serious” went platinum, they released four more records, each with lesser success. Their last album, “How We Do” was released in 2003 and received little commercial attention.
Das EFX still performs occasionally at festivals and small venues, and Dray and Skoob have also worked on solo projects.
The Boogie Monsters consisted of an eclectic mix of members, from Alaskan native Vex Da Vortex to Myntric and Yodared, two Jamaican-born brothers, and that mix reflected in their music.
The group scored critical acclaim with its 1994 album, “Riders of the Storm: The Underwater Album.”
“Riders” spawned the single, “Recognized Thresholds of Negative Stress,” a psychedelic-sounding track, that reached #19 on the Billboard Hip-Hop charts.
After releasing its second album, 1997s “God Sound,” the group broke up.
Vex Davortex has continued to release solo music and also manages the TechWear clothing line.
Yodared, whose real name is Ivor Myers, became a Seventh Day Adventist preacher, writing a book, “Escape from the Black Hole” in 2007 documenting his experiences in the music business.
He currently preaches at Power of the Lamb Ministries in California.
His brother, Myntric, also became a minister.
The fourth member, Mondo McCann, has occasionally released solo music. According to his Facebook profile, the New York native lives in Virginia.
The hardcore group from Queens, which originally consisted of Sticky Fingaz, Big DS, Fredro Starr and Sonny Seeza, had success with the single, “Throw Ya Gunz” in 1993. But it wasn’t until the release of another single, “Slam,” that they achieved stardom.
“Slam” helped propel the group’s debut album, “Bacdafucup” to number eight on the Billboard Hip Hop chart.
After Bacdafucup, Big DS left the group to pursue a solo career, and the remaining members released five more albums, although none duplicated the success of their debut LP.
Big DS died of cancer in 2003. Sonny Seeza left the group in the early 2000s and has released two solo albums.
Fredro Starr is now an actor, appearing in more than 45 movies and tv shows, including as a regular on the hit show “Moesha” in the late 1990s.
Sticky Fingaz has also acted extensively, including appearing in two episodes of the show “Blue Bloods” earlier this year. The duo continues to perform as Onyx.
House of Pain
The trio of Everlast, DJ Lethal, and Danny Boy are forever remembered for their ubiquitous 1992 hit, “Jump Around.”
After that song powered their self-titled debut album to multi-platinum status, the group released two more LPs before splitting in 1996.
Since House of Pain’s breakup, Danny Boy has worked on several music projects, including the groups A.T.F. and La Coka Nostra.
He is the founder of the urban exploring collective “Delta Bravo Urban Exploration Team.”
DJ Lethal joined the rap-metal group Limp Bizkit, which sold more than 40 million albums. Lethal left the band in 2012 and, in addition to producing music, tours as a solo act.
Everlast had a successful solo career beginning in the late 1990s, reinventing himself as a rock singer. He released a triple-platinum album, “Whitey Ford Sings the Blues” in 1998.
The singles, “What It’s Like,” and “Ends” entered the Billboard Top 40 chart in 1999. He subsequently released five additional solo albums, the most recent, “The Life Acoustic,” in 2013.