May 2015 - August 2015

 

 

Insane Cirkle were a 5 man Hip Hop crew from Atlanta, GA by way of Tennessee and New Jersey. They never released any records in their 5 year lifespan and only 2 tracks, which appeared on a demo tape, have ever been leaked before. Let's delve a little deeper with Eddie Meeks one of the founding members...

 

What's Up Eddie! So, who was in the group man?

Prophet (that's me), TD3, Mello, Jaicee, & Kaidee


When and how did you cats hook up?

Mello and I met as Freshman in college in 1989 and formed the group The Prophets which later became Prophetix. We met The Bass Brigade (TD3, Jaicee, & Kaidee) in our dormitory. They weren't students they just used to hang with some of our people on campus.

 

What happened to that material, is it now lost?

Lost is an understatement. The Prophets never made it past demo cassettes.

 

And The Prophets became Insane Cirkle?

Yes, we merged to form Insane Cirkle in ' 90-'91.

 

So where did you and the other members grow up?

I was born and raised in Memphis, Tennessee, Mello is an Atlanta native. We met at Southern Polytechnic Stage University in Marietta, Georgia. The other 3 members all hail from Franklin Township, New Jersey.

 

What are your earliest memories of the culture? and how did you come up,,,


I vividly remember going "Pop Tunes" in Memphis as a kid to buy 45's and 12 inches. My first purchases were "King Tim III" by FatBack Band and "Rappers Delight". Radio was our source for it all and some TV; Soul Train, New York Hot Trax etc. Skating rinks were kind of a big deal in Memphis. Late 70's through early 90's. Memphis got everything later than the rest of the US it seemed. Radio was definitely playing the early mainstream rap but only at certain times. Usually late night. Growing up in Memphis was real cool for the most part. By the time I finished high school it was time for me to go and I've lived in Atlanta since 1989.

 

So you pushed the Elements demo in 1993-ish - did you get good feedback?

Yes, but but no real response. Everybody thought it was cool but we couldn't get any backing. We had a ill stage show and we won a ton of talent shows and lable showcases throughout Atlanta. Made it all the way to the Apollo theater.  We recorded the tracks at several studios in Atlanta. We would upgrade studios the more confident we became. Sony exec Mike Dobson really liked us but he had bigger fish to fry with Kriss Kross, Shadez of Lingo, Highland Place Mobsters, etc

 

Where was mike based?
Atlanta

 

How come you had the "Elements" acetate made? For radio/clubs?


Exactly. It never went to press because we were played by a local cat here working as a middle man with Rainbo Records (Cali pressing plant).

 

Were you gonna get it pressed up yourselves?


Yes but dude got us for our money so all we got out of the deal was 4 or 5 test presses. We gave him a deposit, got the test presses, approved the test presses, never got the vinyl shipment. Went to his office to thoroughly whoop his ass but cooler heads prevailed. We took the L and kept moving.

 

And that is how Insane Click ended?


Yes, that was the nail in the coffin for Insane Click. I struck on my own and got an EP deal with Big Beat/Atlantic exec Mike Caren's Serious Entertainment label (Cali). We dropped "Larger than Life" (Eddie Meeks & Thareeko) on Serious in like '96-'97.

 

 

 

 

Tracks:

A1 360 degrees
A2 Letter To a Dead EMCEE
A3 Up On It

B1 Interruption
B2 Freaks
B3 Elements [Demo Version]


All songs written by J.Meeks, T.Feagin, C.Lewis, J.Carter, & K.Dean for ROCK DA SPIDOT Music (BMI).
All Songs produced by 3P Productions (J.Meeks & T.Feagin).

 

 

 

Price is £19.99 + shipping (4gbp to UK, 6.50gbp to Europe or 9gbp to USA/Oz/Asia)


There will be 350 copies pressed ONLY

 

The first 75 Silver, Clear and Blue mixed coloured vinyl.
The next 75 copies are on Blue and White mixed coloured vinyl.
And the remaining 200 are on traditional black vinyl

 



If you DIDN'T cop any of the other July releases, use these links:
 

If ONLY buying 1 copy use this link:


If ONLY buying 2 copies use this LINK:

 

 

 

The Chosen Few feat Posdnous & J.D.Dove of De La Soul

Time Capsule:The Unreleased 1991 Demos

 

 

Picture it, Long Island, NY, 1986. The crack epidemic had taken its hold over the hood. In fact there had just been an edition of the popular American news show "60 Minutes" which featured a block in Amityville, soon to be known to some local artists as Horror City, which was suffering from heavy unemployment and the effects of the this new drug crisis. Some Zulu Nation cats had came out to Amityville for a block party. The Crash Crew were battling a local crew called The God Squad, which comprised of Rahmel, Mc Duel & MC Finesse. An underrage Brian Jackson aka B-Nice snuck into the battle. This night was the start of his transformation into an MC.

B-Nice and his boy B-Love aka Lovey Brown had met at Copiague High School through a mutual passion for music. B-Nice played drums in the school chorus and picked up DJ'ing skills from friends of his brother who was 7 years his senior. Nice's grandfather was a close friend of the father of De La Soul's Maseo and the boys had met at an early age. They started to hang out through mutual friend DJ Stitches, reputedly one of the founding members of De La Soul. As you know, De La were a big deal in the late 80's and while writing their [incredible] second album "De La Soul is Dead" they guest-produced and featured on The Chosen Few project to help their boys and fellow Amityville artists. They took the demo to Puffy in 1991 who was then with Uptown, to Lyor Cohen at Rush and to Chrysalis and Virgin among others. They got great feedback, but no deal. As often happens the group disbanded but morphed into a new group Fourty Dogs. The demos were locked away and never heard again.....

 

 

-----until a Hip Hop demo tape collector, Scott Rodkey, copped a large collection of tapes in 2015. Among other obscure artifacts was The Chosen Few demo tape. No one to do with the group had a copy of the tracks and after posting on the excellent DWG forum, word got to Herring HQ and we approached the artists. As no masters remained and as this was SUCH a special collection of tracks, we mastered from the original demo tape, the only source available. The sound is very good, no glitches at all,  but it still has the general feel of a demo [it was never taken into a proper studio and mastered]. We are very proud to present to you the Time Capsule 1991 Demos. ENJOY.....

 

 

 

 

Tracks:

A1 1, 2 and We Out feat. J.D. Dove
A2 Down Low feat. Posdnuos
A3 Enuff of the Ruff Stuff

B1 Bring Back the Memories
B2 You Know How
B3 Demo Instrumental


A1 & B1 produced by B- Nice a.k.a. Bestro for Altered Beast Flo Music.
A2, A3 & B2 produced by Posdnuos.

 

 

Price is £19.99 + shipping (4gbp to UK, 6.50gbp to Europe or 9gbp to USA/Oz/Asia)


There will be 350 copies pressed ONLY

 

The first 75 Orange + Gold mixed coloured vinyl.
The next 75 copies are on Silver, Clear + Orange mixed coloured vinyl.
And the remaining 200 are on traditional black vinyl

 



If you DIDN'T buy either of the previous Herring releases this month, use these links:
 

If ONLY buying 1 copy use this link:


If ONLY buying 2 copies use this LINK:


 

 

 

Anyone guess this one? Didn't think so!! After 2 years we're back in the Bronx with Nasty Noah and 5 unreleased and unleaked joints from 1993-1995. PEEP THE SNIPPETS YO!!

 

 

Tracks:


A1 Get over the Boom
A2 No Style
A3 Identity Crisis

B1 Let Em Have It
B2 Press Ya Luck

 

A1,A3 & B1 prodcued by Trey Bag. A2 produced by Young Lord. B2 produced by Robbie Rob.

 

 

Price is £19.99 + shipping (4gbp to UK, 6.50gbp to Europe or 9gbp to USA/Oz/Asia)


There will be 350 copies pressed ONLY

 

The first 75 Red & Goldmixed coloured vinyl.
The next 75 copies are on Gold, Clear + White mixed coloured vinyl.
And the remaining 200 are on traditional black vinyl

 

 

If ONLY buying 1 copy use this link:


If ONLY buying 2 copies use this LINK:


 

 

 

You already know the Don!!! But you don't know these demo only joints. Three unheard jawns from 1989 and two from 1997/8. YOU KNOW HOW WE DO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

 

 

Tracks:

A1 Rhymes from the Market
A2 Native Son
A3 Imitation Of Life

B1 No Question
B2 Talk The Talk


All tracks written & produced by Godfather Don [1989-1998].

Artwork courtesy of the excellent Olie Sung.

 

 

Price is £24.99 + shipping (4gbp to UK, 6.50gbp to Europe or 9gbp to USA/Oz/Asia)


There will be 350 copies pressed ONLY

 

The first 75 Gold, Clear + Red mixed coloured vinyl.
The next 75 copies are on White, Green + Red mixed coloured vinyl.
And the remaining 200 are on traditional black vinyl

 



Use this link if you want 1 copy of the Godfather Don EP:
 

If ONLY buying 1 copy use this link:


Or use this link, to cop 2 copies of the Godfather Don EP:
 

If ONLY buying 2 copies use this LINK:


 

 

ANY QUESTIONS, INFO ON ORDERING MULTIPLE ITEMS OR COMBINED ORDER SHIPPING DISCOUNTS HIT US UP HERE >>>>> info[at]choppedherringrecords[dot]com or HERE

 

 

 

Back once again with an ILL EP straight off the streets of Philly, it's everyones favourite Lo-rackers - DA BUZE BRUVAZ. Some killer joints on this beauty - peep the snippets yo!!!

 

 

Tracks:

A1 Dos Equis
A2 Dezert Storm
A3 Nutrientz
A4 Stone n Robbie

B1 Adornmentz
B2 Duck Sauce
B3 Daily Bread
B4 Sudden Impact


A1 & A2 produced by Jisah. A3 prod. by Maartn. A4 prod. by Rocksteady. B1 prod. by
Rocksteady & Him Lo. B2 prod. by WWIII. B3 prod. by Rebel to the Grain. B4 prod. by DJ TEE.

 

 

 

Price is £14.99 + shipping (4gbp to UK, 6.50gbp to Europe or 9gbp to USA/Oz/Asia)


There will be 350 copies pressed ONLY

 

The first 75 are on Red & Silver mixed coloured vinyl.
The next 75 copies are on Clear, Blue & Black mixed coloured vinyl.
And the remaining 200 are on traditional black vinyl

 



If you DIDN'T buy any of the other June releases, use these links:
 

If ONLY buying 1 copy use this link:


If ONLY buying 2 copies use this LINK:


If you bought any of the other June releases, use these links:
 

1 copy of Straight Shotz in Dirty Glassez EP added to my order:


2 xDa Buze Bruvaz - Straight Shotz EP's added to my order



 

 

------------------------------------------------

 

 

DOWN TO ERF - TREE HOUSE presents THE RARE & UNRELEASED EP VOL 2

 

 

Dang, we've been trying to find these masters for a minute. We nearly had them through the Brass Tacks connect, but it slipped our fishy grip. Then when we ran into Nick @ Tree House through a regular Herring customer, we got a little closer. When Nick finally met up with the Erf brothers after many years and went through their old DATS we were THERE. There has been a bunch of misinformation regarding a [mythical] vinyl release of some of these tracks - suffice to say, there was no vinyl release - until NOW. Down to Erf were a Canada-based group comprising of MC Mathematik and beat makers and siblings Steely Dan & Wal. Their sound was distinct and as flavasome as any classic 90's act. It's a crying shame they never blew up - maybe, once we have gone through more of the unreleased material and dropped it on wax it for the heads, more cats will know the ledge. Meanwhile, peep this, the excellent 3rd release of June - one more to come!!!....BOOOM!!!

 

 

Tracks:

A1 Down To Erf - Insertion of Thought
A2 Down To Erf - Mime
A3 Down To Erf - Rhyme Training (Original)  

B1 Down To Erf - On My Mind
B2 Down To Erf - It Was I
B3 Down To Erf - To Each His Own
 

 

Price is £19.99 + shipping (4gbp to UK, 6.50gbp to Europe or 9gbp to USA/Oz/Asia)


There will be 350 copies pressed ONLY

 

The first 75 are on Red, Gold & Green mixed coloured vinyl.
The next 75 copies are on Clear, Green & White coloured vinyl.
And the remaining 200 are on traditional black vinyl

COLOURS SOLD OUT

 

If ONLY buying 1 copy use this link:


If ONLY buying 2 copies use this LINK:


 


 

--------------------------

 

 

Welcome to....

Squires, The Cynic, & Rapswell are...PEN PALS

 

 

Hailing from Brooklyn, Squires [Beat maker], The Cynic [MC] & Rapswell [MC] are...Pen Pals. Dudes hit us up to check their music and honestly yo, we were COMPLETELY blown away. Was this a classic super group using a pseudonym? Q-Tip, Ad-Rock, Edan, Slick Rick, Doppelgangaz with Prince Paul and [lost] Paul C production? It made no sense - how could a first release be SO well put together? There was/is something suspicious about it!! They hit us up with 2 tracks [of the 10 here] and we cut a deal there and then - didn't need to hear any more.

The second project is already recorded and will be droppin ASAP. PURE HERRING YO.......PLEASE ENJOY, RAP FANS...

 

 

Tracks:

A1 Snatchblasters
A2 The Comeback
A3 STFU
A4 You Know The Deal
A5 Blue

B1 Burners
B2 Filthy Animals
B3 R Crumb
B4 Posse Cut
B5 Pen Pals Outro

 

 

 

 

Price is £16.99 + shipping (4gbp to UK, 6.50gbp to Europe or 9gbp to USA/Oz/Asia)


There will be 350 copies pressed ONLY

Full colour jacket with spine

The first 75 are on Clear, Red & Blue mixed coloured vinyl.
The next 75 copies are on Solid Blue & White coloured vinyl.
And the remaining 200 are on traditional black vinyl

 



If you DIDN'T cop the Mr Voodoo joint [how can that be!?!?], use these links:
 

If ONLY buying 1 copy use this link:


If ONLY buying 2 copies use this LINK:


 

CHECK THE GROUP'S WEBSITE FOR MORE INFO:

http://www.penpalsnyc.com

http://www.soundcloud.com/penpalsnyc

 

ANY QUESTIONS, INFO ON ORDERING MULTIPLE ITEMS OR COMBINED ORDER SHIPPING DISCOUNTS HIT US UP HERE >>>>> info[at]choppedherringrecords[dot]com or HERE

 

 

-------------------------------------

 

 

 

 

This release is the culmination of many years of flava-hunting. Herring has been looking for these tracks in best quality for over 5 years and several months ago a good Herring customer alerted us to a post on the excellent DWG forum. Someone was selling two cassettes he copped from a Natural Elements show in the late 90's. The tapes contained demos, rare freestyles and unreleased NE joints dubbed from the [now lost] original sources [not radio versions]. Among the demos were the elusive, early Mr Voodoo tracks included on this release. The seller and owner of the tapes [who wishes to remain anonymous] said this, of these NY Underground Hip Hop artifacts:

 

"In 1999 or 2000 (I cannot remember which exactly) I went to see Natural Elements in Denmark. At the time, they had made a name for themselves from the Lyricist Lounge as well as their Tommy Boy 12” singles. Usually during shows like these back in those days, the artists would sell t-shirts and tapes. Primarily this would be an independent artist's side business. Natural Elements would sell these two tapes, “Exclusives Vol. 1” and “Exclusives Vol. 2”. Both containing rare freestyles, radio promos, features and demos, many of which are still unreleased today.

I’ve kept these tapes in a shoebox for many years, and one day I came to think about them. I didn’t know if anyone would be interested, but I decided to post them for sale on DWG. One thing led to another, and Chopped Herring contacted me and wanted to check the tapes out to see if there were any demos that could be released. As Chopped Herring already had a relationshop with the guys in Natural Elements, it was only "natural" for the label to [attempt] to release some of these gems...."

 

 

The tapes were couriered across Europe to be transferred using a high end Nakamichi tape deck. Following transfer, the chosen tracks were mastered to a very high standard by Herring's regular sound engineer and are now available on wax for the very first time. The original masters were lost many years ago....

 

These cassettes very rarely come up for sale/auction - but now, following the release of this project, we will be making both these ORIGINAL tapes available to PURCHASE - hit us up with your bid amount and in a few weeks, we will sell them [on behalf of our anonymous and most generous benefactor]...

 

 

That's the story of the tapes....

 

 

Now let's hear from the man, Mr Voodoo himself:

 

 


Where did you come up man?

I was born and raised in Brooklyn. Bed Stuy and Fort Greene.


What are your some of your early memories of Hip Hop culture in NYC?

NYC was ill. I remembered when Sugarhill Gang came out vividly. But the most impactful stuff for me was them Coldcrush Brother tapes man. Me and my lil homies would just sit and stare at the boom box in awe listening to these dudes. Then it was the movies like Wildstyle and Beat Street. NYC had all these little mom and pop record shops like Music Factory, Beat Street, Soul Shack where if you was lucky you would run into one of your idols, mc's or dj's while you were copping records. The block parties was scarey as hell because you never knew what could pop off but it was also fun as hell. NYC had culture, character, flavor. Now it's so generic and watered down its sad.


When did you first start writing rhymes?

I started as a youngster in my teens around 13 yrs. just playing around. I was heavily influenced by Kool Moe Dee and the Treacherous Three. I was especially keen on T La Rock. I wanna also take the time to explain how important Slick Rick was in the early 80's. Man that dude had a tape circulating before La Di Do Di with the whole routine he use to do with Dougie and that influence a lot of dudes at that time. You can hear traces of that in G.L.O.C.K too.


Set the scene for the material on the "Elusive Demos" project on Chopped Herring:

One of the things about these songs is that they are like a capsule of a moment or a zone I was in. See at the time I was just given the Source Magazine Hip Hop Quotable Lyrics of the Month. So it was my intent to prove that I was the baddest lil dude outta BK rapping. Sorta like maintaining the standard I set. Me and Char use to meet up at our man Vidal's home studio. It would be like the whole click there. And he would eek out beats for every single one of the mc's there. Most of the songs came about that way. Funny thing about G.L.O.C.K was we used this Space Ghost snippet from the Cartoon Network and he constructed the whole beat around it. I was heavily influenced by old school artists like T La Rock, Cold Crush, Fantastic Five, Treacherous Three. Not to mention Kane, KRS One, Kool G Rap as well as underground dudes like Divine Force and Lord Shafyq. What I tried to do was roll all those influences up into one package and keep it all in context with what I was seeing as a kid growing up in Bed Stuy and Fort Greene. "NY Straight Talk" is my theme song. It basically was built around me growing up in NYC early eighties talking about the culture in the city at that time and draws parallels to the present.


How did you originally meet Char?

I met Char thru a mutual friend. Dude named Dante. You may have heard him on some stuff like the Knick Knack Patty Wack remake we did. I met him in school and we use to kick rhymes to each other and he told me to come uptown to the BX. That's when I met Char and he was like dumbfounded cause he never heard no one rhyming like I did. From there I started recording with him every week. That was a blessing cause it kept me out of trouble. My first time recording ever was with Char in the winter of '90 I believe, after our initial meeting the week before. It was a song called "Voodoo" which later morphed to "Running From My Magic".


Where are those recordings?

Uhh the early recordings are lost. I had them on tapes a long time ago. They were unique. I had this style which was a cross between like Brother J and like with vocabulary like T La Rock and just way out there. The real early stuff would be like close to G.L.O.C.K. I used to experiment with crazy styles. Vocal inflections triple entendres stop and start. Similar to what you hear on G.L.O.C.K.

 

How did you meet the other NE cats?:

L was a little kid then. He use to always come thru and just peep us older dudes. See L had a birdseye view of all the growth and development I went through as an artist, so our relationship is special. But he was like our little homie and he just out of nowhere started spitting and it was crazy because he was so young and had such a flow.

 

And KA?

KA was a wild dude I knew from school also. We weren't really cool until one day he had approached me and was like he never knew that I was rhyming like that. I had begun to make a name for myself being on the radio and stuff. So he told me he rhymed too. We started kicking it and that's where the friendship began. I brought him to Char and that's all she wrote. I always believed in him so everywhere I went I took him with me. On stage and everything.


You are known for your 90's freestyles on various NY radio shows, how did you get yourself on the radio back in the day?

I was lucky enough to have a mentor. He knew I was a rapper and hooked me up with the program director of WBAI. He hooked me up with J Smooth of the Underground Railroad and that was where I started. I played it cool didn't really let them know I rhymed. Then one day they were just playing around free styling and I kicked something and their eyes widened like yo wtf from then on I was known as the poet laureate and whenever they had guests come through they would line me up to freestyle with them. I met a lot of artists that way and also it gave me exposure. That was around '92 or '93 maybe.

 

Some artists are embarrassed of their early works - sounds like you are still proud of them - is that the case?

I'm actually proud of my early works simply because it represents a time of purity. Just that unadulterated unfiltered youthful rawness. I'm so happy the world will get a chance to see how visionary my stuff was. I was saying things they only now beginning to comprehend. So hats off to you my dude.

 

 

 

Tracks:

A1 New York Straight Talk   
A2 G.L.O.C.K.
A3 Runnin From My Magic

B1 New York Straight Talk [Remix]
B2 Pen Hits The Paper         
B3 I Come with Skills
B4 Betta Duck [Bonus Track]

 

All tracks produced by Charlemagne except B3 which is produced by DJ LDR Louie Ortiz.
All tracks recorded 1994-1995 except B3 recorded in 2001.

 

 

Price is £24.99 + shipping (4gbp to UK, 6.50gbp to Europe or 9gbp to USA/Oz/Asia)


There will be 400 copies pressed ONLY

 

The first 75 are on White coloured vinyl.
The next 75 copies are on Gold coloured vinyl.
And the remaining 250 are on traditional black vinyl

 



If ONLY buying 1 copy use this link:


If ONLY buying 2 copies use this LINK: