Paris (rapper)

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Paris
Birth name Oscar Jackson, Jr.
Born (1967-10-29) October 29, 1967 (age 46)
Origin San Francisco, California, United States
Genres political hip hop, West Coast hip hop
Years active 1989–present
Labels Priority Records, Tommy Boy Records, Guerrilla Funk Recordings
Associated acts Public Enemy, dead prez, The Conscious Daughters, Immortal Technique, The Coup, George Clinton, Kam, MC Ren, T-K.A.S.H., DJ True Justice, The S.T.O.P. Movement
Website www.guerrillafunk.com, www.parismusiconline.com

Oscar Jackson, Jr. (born October 29, 1967), better known by his stage name Paris is an American rapper from San Francisco, California, known for his highly charged political and socially conscious lyrics. Influenced by the Black Panthers, he was once a member of the Nation of Islam,[1] but now is agnostic.

Biography[edit]

1990s[edit]

He was catapulted onto the national scene in 1990 with his hit single "The Devil Made Me Do It" and album of the same name, after earning a bachelor's degree in economics from UC Davis.[1] Originally released on Tommy Boy Records, his first single was banned by MTV.[2] Since then his stance on political issues and social commentary have both aided and hindered his quest to bring his music and messages to the masses.

When his second album, Sleeping with the Enemy, was ready for release in 1992, Paris was dropped from now-defunct Tommy Boy Records (since rechristened Tommy Boy Entertainment in 2002) and distributor Warner Bros. Records, owned by Time Warner, when the parent company discovered its incendiary content, which included fantasy revenge killings of then-President Bush and racist police officers. Also problematic was the album's insert, which featured the artist waiting behind a tree, holding a Tec 9, as the president was waving to the crowd. Paris eventually released the LP himself on his newly formed Scarface Records. Also in 1992, Paris contributed to industrial music band Consolidated's 1992 album Play More Music with the track "Guerrillas in the Mist."

Paris signed a major artist and distribution deal with Priority Records for himself and Scarface Records in 1993 and released his third LP, Guerrilla Funk, and several then up-and-coming groups, most notably the Conscious Daughters. Paris and Priority formally severed their business relationship due to creative differences in 1995, and in 1997, Paris signed a one-off deal with now-defunct Whirling Records (distributed by Rykodisc) for the release of his 4th LP, Unleashed, which was released in small numbers with little promotion. The album contained some very explicitly violent and racially charged verses, and while less overtly political as earlier efforts, the lyrics explicitly describe racial violence when confronted with the same.

The album was also released in Europe with a different track list, featuring songs from 1994, 1996 and 1998, some of which were more in the style of his earlier releases. Becoming increasingly dissatisfied with the music industry, Paris retired from recording and worked as a stockbroker, cementing his personal wealth allowing him to independently finance the next stage of his musical endeavors. His influence on the Music Industry led to a new age of music where artists would own their art and no longer fear the government silencing their knowledge of The King Alfred Plan, Rex 84, and the Secrets contained in the Magna Carta as well as the Holy Grail. The Controversial lyrics caused an awareness to programs such as HAARP and other plans of massive musical control.

2000s[edit]

In 2003, Paris appeared on Anybody Killa's Hatchet Warrior album and returned with the album, Sonic Jihad. The album continued his tradition of controversial cover art, evoking images of the September 11, 2001 attacks, it depicts a plane flying toward the White House. The content is equally radical and speaks on many topics, including the war on terror, the war in Iraq, police brutality, black-on-black violence, conditions in inner-city communities, the Illuminati, and state sponsored terrorism. Other politically minded hip hop artists were featured on the album, including Kam, dead prez, and Public Enemy. Sonic Jihad was the catalyst for the creation of Paris' new label and web site, Guerrilla Funk Recordings, a home for projects and material of such notable acts as dead prez and Public Enemy.

In 2006, Paris completed a project with Public Enemy, Rebirth of a Nation, the title both a reference to the 1915 film The Birth of a Nation, controversial for its glorification of the Ku Klux Klan and its racist portrayal of African Americans, and PE's 1988 classic It Takes a Nation of Millions.... Although Chuck D was the primary vocal performer, Paris penned and produced the bulk of the album, which also featured N.W.A's MC Ren, Immortal Technique, Kam, dead prez, and The Conscious Daughters.

In 2006 Paris also released Paris presents Hard Truth Soldiers, Vol. 1, the first in a Paris-produced compilation series that touched on subjects ranging from war and police brutality to black-on-black crime and domestic violence. It showcased contributions from Public Enemy, The Coup, dead prez, Paris, T-K.A.S.H., Kam, The Conscious Daughters, Mystic, MC Ren, Sun Rise Above, and The S.T.O.P. Movement (Mobb Deep, Tray Deee, Soopafly, KRS-One, Defari, Daz, J-Ro, RBX, Bad Azz, WC, Dilated Peoples, Mac Minister, The Alchemist, Mack 10, Evidence, Defari, Everlast, and B-Real), among others.

Also in 2006, Paris introduced the world to former Coup-member T-K.A.S.H. and his debut offering, Turf War Syndrome, handling production duties as well.

His anti-war anthem "What Would You Do?" on his Sonic Jihad album[3] accuses the US government of perpetrating the September 11, 2001, attacks, saying, "Ain't no terror threat, unless approval rating's slumpin'. So I'ma say it for the record we the ones that planned it, ain't no other country took a part or had they hand in it". It is also featured on the Peace Not War, Vol. 2 compilation album.[4]

In 2007, Paris released the follow-up companion piece to Rebirth of a Nation, the Public Enemy collaboration Remix of a Nation, and began laying the framework for the film division of Guerrilla Funk Recordings.

Paris inked a distribution deal with Fontana/Universal for Guerrilla Funk (with movies through Vivendi) in late 2008, and released his newest album, Acid Reflex, featuring Chuck D. and George Clinton.

In 2009, Paris released Paris Presents: Hard Truth Soldiers, Vol. 2, the sophomore project from T-K.A.S.H., Brains All Over The Streets, and the latest offering from The Conscious Daughters, The Nutcracker Suite.

Paris not only writes and produces songs, but also publishes information about how to help the black community grow. One example of this is an article about how to manage your personal money. He explains about how you can build a better future for yourself and your children by handling your money more consciously in 5 steps and a final re-investment step.

He has recently appeared as himself in music documentary Sounds Like a Revolution.

In 2011, Paris performed at the Gathering of the Juggalos and appeared on Insane Clown Posse's Featuring Freshness.[5] He also performed Saturday, 30 July, in Amsterdam on the Amsterdam Hiphopfestival.

Discography[edit]

Albums[edit]

Videos/Singles[edit]

  • The Devil Made Me Do It
  • The Days of Old
  • Outta My Life
  • Don't Stop the Movement - Acid Reflex
  • Guerrilla Funk
  • Break the Grip of Shame
  • Assata's Song
  • One Time fo' Ya Mind

Singles Chart Positions[edit]

Year Song Chart positions[6] Album
U.S. R&B U.S. Rap
1990 The Devil Made Me Do It 20 The Devil Made Me Do It
1994 Guerrilla Funk 90 23 Guerrilla Funk

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Peter Byrne (December 3, 2003). "Capital Rap". SF Weekly. Archived from the original on 2009-08-19. 
  2. ^ "Paris bio". MTV.com. Retrieved 2009-08-07. 
  3. ^ Guerrilla Funk: Paris: Sonic Jihad
  4. ^ Google Music: Paris
  5. ^ http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5gKE67L97SA
  6. ^ http://www.allmusic.com/artist/p82/charts-awards/billboard-singles

External links[edit]