Art Of Rap Fest Spotlight – Slick Rick The Ruler
Ricky Walters (originally from the Mitcham section of South London) exploded on the Hip Hop scene as Slick Rick with The Get Fresh Crew led by beat box pioneer Doug E. Fresh. After earning a reputation as an amazing live performer (with a little convincing) Slick Rick hit the studio and recorded “The Show”. It was the B side however, a live routine with Doug E. Fresh titled “La-Di-Da-Di” that would define Slick Rick’s pioneering contributions to the culture. The song would go on to become one of the most classic and revered records of the 20th century. Slick Rick would evolve to become Hip Hop’s greatest story teller, as well as release monumental albums like The Great Adventures of Slick Rick, The Rulers Back, Behind Bars, and The Art Of Story Telling
Slick Rick, saw tremendous heights and extreme lows in his personal life through out his career. He was incarcerated after shooting his cousin during a family argument in 1990. Slick Rick did seven years in prison and instead of using it as so called “street cred” he warned youth about the dangers of jail on his album Behind Bars which was released in 1994 (while Walters was still incarcerated). Slick Rick became a free man and wasted no time shooting back to the top of Hip Hop after collaborating with Outkast, Aaliyah, Montell Jordan, and Jay-Z, as well as touring the world and releasing more successful albums.
Slick Rick is in every true rap fans top 10. He found a way to tell the stories of the streets, but add an element of humor and reality while encouraging the listener to fill in the blanks with their own imagination. As a youth, when my mother caught me listening to a curse laden Slick Rick story, instead of cringing, and scolding me, she laughed. She said “wait what did he say…that’s hilarious…wait rewind that.” For a second it was as if she was hearing Richard Pryor deliver his jokes with the smoothness of Sam Cooke’s voice, and he had a British accent. Slick Rick earned the title the ruler.
Catch Slick Rick At The Art Or Rap Fest July 18th in Irvine Ca and July 19th in Mountain View Ca, w/ The Game, Ice-T, Bone Thugs-N-Harmony, Rakim, DJ Quik, Mack 10,
Slick Rick, Big Daddy Kane, Too Short, Warren G, Kurtis Blow, Afrika Bambaataa,Epmd, Xzibit, Tha Alkaholiks, Ras Kass, Kool Moe D, King Tee, Busy Bee, Melle Mel, Naughty Nation, Biz Markie and the Soulsonic Force