“Oh that was a joke. (Room Laughs) I, Fat Lip, do NOT have Herpes… definitely! I was just buggin out.”-Fat Lip of The Pharcyde

In 1992 four brothers out of California decided to make a Hip-Hop album.  More than two decades after its November 24, 1992 release date The Pharcyde’s “Bizarre Ride II The Pharcyde” is recognized and celebrated as an album that helped define the golden age of Hip-Hop. Containing analog-era classics like “Passing Me By” and “Ya Mama” the smokey, comedic delivery was a counterpoint to rugged and aggressive sounds coming out of the left coast at the time.

While on tour to celebrate their twenty-year milestone, three of the original members, Fat Lip, Slim Kid3 and J-Swift took time out to talk  to about sampling Quincy Jones, cocaine addiction, STDs and the creation of a classic. Buckle your seat belt.

TUD: What does it mean for you guys to have an album that’s considered classic?

Fat Lip: It means a lot and it feels surreal. I never thought it would be looked at like that because it was something we did because we loved Hip-Hop so much. We started out as fans, then we wanted to get a record deal and then we went on tour with Tribe and De La Soul, our favorite rap groups, and the shit just kept building, it’s unbelievable. And even still to this day, I really just can’t wrap my head around the fact that cats are still f*cking with us. But I love it.

How long did it take record “The Bizarre Ride II The Pharcyde? 

Slim Kid3: I think it took like nine months and we weren’t even finished. We had this song called “My Man” that didn’t make the album. That was going to make that album, to me take another step up because of just the fun sound to it.

What ever happened to that song?

Jay Swift: We got it. Me and LA Jay actually got together and pulled up the multi track. We all got together for a rehearsal with Tre and Lip and we laid down some vocals on it. I was like ‘should I use it for my solo album?’ but then I thought ‘that’s US.” So I’m thinking it’s gonna pop up on his new Bizarre Ride.

Slim Kid3: I think the only verse we were keeping from the original was Fat Lips because it was sooo zany. I did something new because I didn’t have a verse on it back then. We had a lot of DAT tapes of freestyles over the tracks we were doing at the time. We would always run a DAT and when that DAT was done, we’d throw in a fresh one. We did that throughout the whole day everyday for all the time we were working…

No wonder it took nine months!

Slim Kid3: It’s the process of making the records. You get up on the mic and freestyle and you wait for the blessing to come so you can put it across over music. If we were just to freestyle without capturing it… then damn, that moment, we might not get it.

Fat Lip: Freestyling was a big deal back then. That was a part of the whole West Coast scene that was putting fire in everybody. Freestyle Fellowship was the main cats coming off the dome but coherently and creatively as if they wrote it and planned that shit. So that was a big inspiration for everyone in the city and we did that shit for hours, at the end of our recording process, when they finally said “look, you gotta finish this record” we just went in to those DATS that we had. Hours and hours, that’s why the record feels like that because most of that shit is spontaneous, even the choruses.

Slim Kid3: “Pack The Pipe” was a complete freestyle situation. I wasn’t there that day so I had to fill in the blanks. But that was a magical moment… that I f*cking missed! I HATE that I missed that day! But what came about was pretty awesome.

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