With one half of Kris Kross, Chris Kelly, passing on May 1, 2013, I wanted to dedicate this month’s edition of Not So Random Videos (NSRV) to him, them, and feature lil’ b-boy hip hop/rap duos and groups from the time Kris Kross was prominent in the 1990s. Of course, I’ll be kicking things off with a Kriss Kross video and closing with a BONUS video featuring just one lil’ b-girl. Had to include her, here, too. Not sure when I’ll have the opportunity again.
I remember back in the day I had the first TLC tape (Ooooooohhh… On the TLC Tip) (yes, tape!) and my brother, who is six years younger than me, had the first Kris Kross tape (Totally Krossed Out). And, those who know, know they were all crew, with Jermaine Dupri knowing TLC, and them all knowing each other. Kris Kross were even featured in TLC’s “Hat 2 Da Back” music video from that debut release.
Most of these kiddy rap duos and groups were associated with a grown-up rapper and/or hip hop collective, so their rhymes were probably written for them in most cases. That said, it’s interesting to point out that their content and lyrics were so grown-up and all the boy groups had beef with each other and would address it in their rhymes and songs.
I think because they were children and teens, it wasn’t taken as seriously, though, as it was with the adult rappers. There was no fear of something more dangerous happening or any sense that something more extreme would occur. I think it was understood that all of that was kept on record and that it was no more grave than a school yard argument. At least, as a listener, that’s how I felt. If only grown-up hip hop beefs could have had that child-like innocence to them.
‘Nuff said. Enjoy!
peace, love + all that jazz
freddie beat aka Freddie Rodriguez
Kris Kross featuring Super Cat “Alright”
There’s a lot of good Kris Kross joints from back in the day. This one from the second album, Da Bomb, is a stand-out for me.
Another Bad Creation (ABC) “Iesha”
I actually did have the first ABC tape (Coolin’ at the Playground Ya’ Know!) and even bought the second one (It Ain’t What U Wear, It’s How U Play It). I was into BBD (Bell Biv DeVoe), who they were affiliated with.
Illegal “We Getz Busy”
Includes disses aimed at Kris Kross and Da Youngsta’s. Kris Kross were the most successful of these groups , at the time, so when you’re on top, you’re going to get aimed at.
Immature “Tear It Up (On Our Worst Behavior)”
A little different kind of group because the had the singing in addition to the rapping. They always reminded me of a miniature little boy version of TLC. At least in the beginning. So, since they weren’t technically rappers, they didn’t get caught up in the fray of all that rivalry. This was featured on their debut release, On Our Worst Behavior, as well as on the soundtrack for the animated film, Bébé’s Kids.
Da Youngsta’s “Iz U Wit Me”
+++BONUS+++ Raven-Symone “That’s What Little Girls Are Made Of”
Before Willow Smith, there was Raven-Symone. Little known fact: Missy Elliott worked on this song and entire project with Raven. This was before Missy Elliott was a household name. I believe it is her voice doing the Jamaican accent in this video. Why they replaced her with someone else for the visual, I’m not sure. Love the tributes to divas (Madonna, Janet, Mary J. Blige) and even the one to a divo (Mike Jack in the beginning, right?).