The Pharcyde is a hip hop group from South Central Los Angeles that consists of
members: Tre "Slimkid" Hardson, Derrick "Fatlip" Stewart, Imani Wilcox and Romye
Robinson. Tre, Imani and Romye met in the LA club scene during the late '80s
performed briefly as dancers on the TV show In Living Color, while Derrick
performed at other local clubs before meeting up with the others in 1990. Under
of a local high school music teacher, the group learned about the recording
industry and the
process of making an album. In 1991, they landed a record deal with
In 1992, the group released their unconventional debut album, Bizarre Ride
Pharcyde, which was propelled to success by the hit single Passin Me By. The
gold and their popularity earned them a spot on the second stage of
1994. What I find particularly interesting about this album is how universally
was by fans of different musical interests, as even the alternative crowd seemed
to dig The
Pharcyde. With songs like "Passin Me By, a tale of unreciprocated love, and
humorous narration of the group's misadventures while driving with a suspended
lyrics appealed to a broad audience, but not in a watered down pop way. The album
refreshing dose of humility and humor to the hip hop scene, which at the time was
becoming shamefully inundated with the 40 ounce drinking, violent, misogynistic music
which would forever blight mainstream rap.
Several years passed while the group toured and recorded their second album,
Labcabincalifornia, which was released in 1995. The album fared pretty well,
but failed to
live up to the high standard set by their debut release. The album did, however,
of the coolest music videos I've ever seen. For the song "Drop", the video
footage of the
group rapping, dancing, and walking around a city street was played backwards. But
thing: for the recording of the video, the group did everything backwards.
walked backwards while mouthing the lyrics backwards, so of course when the video is
reverse it appears as it's playing normally, until strange things start to happen.
that stands out in particular in my mind begins with Slimkid wearing nothing but
shorts, walking up the sidewalk rapping, when he's suddenly assailed by a shirt and
pants that fly out of nowhere and seemingly dress themselves onto him. Brilliant
After the release of Labcabincalifornia, the group dropped off the face of the
earth. Fat Lip left the group and recorded a solo album, Slimkid recorded a
jaded and bitter love song on the Korn album "Follow the Leader", but The
Pharcyde was generally idle. Finally, in 2000 the group (minus Fatlip) released
"Plain Rap", a disappointing and wholly unworthy successor to the previous albums.
The group later announced that Slimkid was changing his name to Phoenix and
leaving the group to perform solo.
I guess this is the end.