In part one, we discussed Q’s relationship with Souljah Slim, the perils of being an independent in a game dominated by the majors, their respective careers, Spice’s relationship with Eazy E, and a lot more.
In part two, Spice discusses N.O.R.E., Tupac, his memories of Bushwick Bill and Pimp C. Q Bosilini breaks down the best southern movements, Thug World South and more…
Spice when did you first hear your friend Eazy’s eventual supergroup Bone Thugs N Harmony?
Spice: Actually I originally had the beat for “Thuggish Ruggish Bone” first. I was riding around writing a song to it. That was my beat. I was driving around playing that shit. Trying to come up with a song in my head. I was riding around listening and I switched to the radio. They were actually playing the song, the Bone version. I said fuck it. It was hot, they more than did it justice. They rocked that shit. I eventually met them soon after. They were sitting outside the radio station is Eazy’s van. That was back in the early nineties.
Since you have such a large catalog, with some very distinctive flows, what would you say is your best verse?
Spice: Man. Oh shit. I’ve done so many verses, so many bars. It’s so many things I’ve done. So much shit that’s happened through the years I can’t even begin to think what’s the best. It’s just too many to pick.
How about you Q, what do you think your best song is?
Q: Definitely “Let God.” That’s really my life in that song. All facts.
Spice what was Tupac like compared to how he was portrayed?
Spice: I think he was really misunderstood. I mean who wouldn’t have a chip on their shoulder that was born in jail. Of course, he’s going to walk around with that chip. You not going to take no shit from anybody, especially if you a little nigga. Motherfuckers were trying to bully him. Until he had to pop a few niggas, or whatever. I’m 6’1′ and 235 lbs, built like a kung-fu fighter in this bitch. Not too many approach me with any bullshit. Ain’t too many motherfuckers walking up to a nigga like me, unless it’s some serious shit.
When you’re short like ‘Pac, niggas try to test you. He was five-foot something and a skinny nigga. He had a few incidents. That shit will take a toll on you, mentally. Throughout his life, he had to have his guards up. Then he had the bullshit with the cops. Police whooping on him because his name was Tupac Shakur. They thought he was lying, that he was fucking with them. He ended up suing them, getting some money.
He had to shoot two other police. He saw them jumping some dude on some racist shit when they were off-duty. Some shit happened and he ended up shooting them. Shit that would happen to him was the type of shit that would make you say what the fuck. It would make you question why that shit kept happening to you. Again and again. He was really misunderstood because he was going through a lot of shit. Most of which he didn’t even start.
You were one of the first major-label artists to put him on an album, before his meteoric rise. What did you see in him to do that?
Spice: Tupac was my homie. One of our homies got killed and we wanted to do a song for his funeral so we did “Jealous Got Me Strapped.” That ended up being the theme for the homie that got killed’s funeral. Back then when we did songs they had real meaning behind that shit. We were in the studio and decided we had to do a song for him. We even went to the funeral in Jealous Got Me Strapped t-shirts.
That was my homie for real. Throughout our careers, me and Pac remained close. Even if we didn’t see each other for a year, that was my guy.
What sticks out in your mind about your friendship with Pimp C? Any particular stories?
Oh man, Pimp motherfucking C. He was one of a kind. We kicked it a lot, but we ain’t never have no real crazy times. We just kicked it a lot. I had him smoking this good Cali. We smoked some shit. We would do a lot of work, we got a lot of songs. Get high, fuck with some broads or something. He’d come out to the Bay when weed was completely illegal. We’d be flipping pounds and shit. He was kind of like my rapping and smoking homie. We used to call that shit the hippie rapper lifestyle. That nigga would get high and just do songs. He’d play every instrument up in that bitch too.
Q you are definitely a veteran in the southern scene. You’ve seen a lot of movements come and go. Who have you been the most impressed with?
Q: I grew up on Suave House and No Limit. I don’t know if you ever going to really get anything like that again. I’m trying to push Thug World to those heights. We want to be mentioned with the Death Rows and No Limits. We got some strong artists. We going to keep pushing. Hopefully, 2020 is the year.
Spice you spoke on the term thug being used in vain. Cats wearing dresses and other assorted wild shit. What did you think of Noreaga naming his label Thugged Out?
Spice: Definitely. Noreaga is a part of the thug world. He’s part of the thug nation so he got a pass. He always got a pass. That’s my guy. Bone Thugs, Thug Life, Spice 1, that’s all Thug Nation. On the east coast, you definitely got a lot of thugs. Nore’s part of the thug nation. He fucks with me and Bone Thugs, we all go back. Everybody I fuck with I consider part of my thug nation. Especially Nore, he definitely rocks with us.
Q earlier you said that there’s a conspiracy to dumb down music. Could you elaborate?
It’s the same irritation Spice spoke about dealing with the majors. You hear the shit that’s on the radio. It is starting to come back around though. At least you got Kevin Gates and NBA Youngboy. They be on some real live shit. Plus Da Baby, those boys is actually starting to spit again. But a lot of shit doesn’t even sound like you got to put any effort into making a song anymore. A lot of that mumble shit was all garbage to me. It’s harder to be a rapper than it is a football player. There are more cats living off the NFL than there is this music. They tried to make that shit look all easy. Then you’ll have kids dropping out of school chasing this impossible dream. Most of them won’t make it. They’ll either become prisoners or workers. That shit ain’t accidental. It’s something that the powers that be are trying to make us do.
Is that why you make such an effort to show the bad of all evils in your videos?
Q: Yeah, you know my video “Mommas Don’t Let Your Babies,” I show that shit at the end of my video. You ready to mask up and rob, but you also see what can happen when you do that. It might be a murder, might be a long bid. There are consequences to all of that shit. I don’t want my kids to be rappers. Go do something else. Spice can tell you about this game better than anybody.
Spice: Man this shit dirty. You don’t want to be like Spice, you want to be like Mike. If you want to be like Spice that means you done been locked up, went to jail a few times, been shot, shot at. You don’t want to be like that. Dying in the street with your blood running onto the pavement, into the gutter. That ain’t cool. What’s cool is dying in your bed, surrounded by your family that loves you.
If you for real into this shit, into this game. Then you really were in the streets. You sold your dope and you keeping it gangster. Then you still got to keep it G. You got to keep it G all the way down the line. You can’t get in there snitching on niggas in shit, talking down on niggas. Even in gangster rap, you affiliated. You mob affiliated like Frank Sinatra in this bitch. You connected. When you connected with real G’s and bosses, and you a rapper you chose that connection. You in the gang, that’s what you do. Ain’t no snitching. Ain’t no you scared of this man or that motherfucker. There ain’t no scared shit period. This is ride or die. It really is.
So has anyone tried to make a name for themselves off tasking you down or trying your G?
Spice: Yeah, hell yeah. With me, I don’t even come from that era where you even play. You don’t even play with a nigga like me. I’m over here and I got kids and all that shit. Still, it is what it’s always been. Don’t make me go get that motherfucking Draco and come looking for you nigga. I don’t do the diss records. I don’t got time for that shit. I got my guys. We’re trying to get money out here with this music. All that shit we talk, we do that shit if we got to get down like that. We’re not looking for that type of shit. We do let it be known what it is though.
I feel like your music has messages and promotes a lot of social consciousness as well though.
Spice: Yeah, I do. I say motherfucker a lot though. Me and Samuel Jackson got to have a motherfucker contest. That’d go viral. He got me with the snakes on a plane shit though. Let it be known though, for everyone that reads this. My real name is Spice Motherfucking 1. The motherfucker is just silent, but it is Spice Motherfucking 1.
Q has it ever been a struggle being white in hip-hop?
Q: I’m still struggling. I’ve been doing this since I was thirteen though. That’s before I ever even heard of Eminem. When they had the ciphers I would go to rap. Before I even started they would call me Vanilla Ice and Marky Mark. The black folks would say that this white boy thinks he can rap. The white folks would say that this boy thinks he’s black. Being from a country ass town in Tennessee, I caught it bad. I was the only little white boy with Cross Colours on. It was a fight everyday man, just because I was me.
Spice who do you consider underrated?
Spice: I feel like Jayo Felony is really underrated. They underrate my guy Jayo a little bit. He’s skilled the fuck up. Him and Crooked I. Them niggas are savage.
Spice how’d you used to end up on all the movie soundtracks? Was that a Jive situation?
Spice: A little bit, but the producers would seek my music out. It was cool. I still look at those plaques and cash those checks.
That’s how I learned about you. How I knew to go buy your music.
Spice: Oh yeah, which one?
Tales From the Hood, I bought it because it had Scarface on it. Face was real big in DC and it pulled my coat to your music.
Spice: Speaking of Rap-A-Lot, rest in peace to the homie Bushwick Bill. Shout out to Lil J, Scarface, the whole Rap-A-Lot. I got so many stories about Bill. Check this out. I was walking through his house, looking at all the Geto Boys plaques. Something just told me to move one of the plaques to the side. I don’t know why, but I just pushed it to the side. When I moved it to the side there was a big ass gunshot hole in the fucking wall.
I asked Bill what the fuck happened. He told me that he thought someone had broken into his house. He took a shot at “the intruder” with a shotgun. He was talking all slow with that typical Bushwick Bill voice. He showed me the shotgun and it was taller than him. He had to have flown at least three feet back when he shot it.
You’ve got a lot of stories about Bill. How’d you end up being around him so much?
Spice: I can’t even lie. Bill was one of my closest friends ever. When my first album dropped, the lead single “187 Proof” was doing really good. Especially in Texas, Houston in particular. That’s where all my people are at. I was born in Texas. So I had a show out there. I went out there and saw all of my cousins and aunties and all of that shit. I ran into Bushwick at the soundcheck. We said what’s up and next thing you know, we’re rolling blunts and drinking 40’s. We ended up in a supermarket with a shopping cart full of nothing but 40 ounces of Old English. Literally it was full to the top. People were staring at us and laughing. We ended up signing a gang of autographs in there. We were really young. Bill had to buy the beer since I wasn’t even 21 yet. Rest in peace to that brother. RIP to all my homies. Pac, Eazy, Nipsey, Jam Master Jay, everyone who started this shit. I think there should be a certain respect for those that passed away that we all looked up to. There should be a rule in hip-hop that you don’t speak on the dead unless you’re saying something good. That’s my final thought of the day.