Steele (birth name Darrell A. Yates, Jr.) is an American rapper, famous as half of the underground rap duo Smif-N-Wessun, and as a member of Hip Hop supergroup Boot Camp Clik. Steele and Smif-N-Wessun partner Tek made their debut on Black Moon's classic 1993 album Enta Da Stage on the tracks "Black Smif-N-Wessun" and "U Da Man". The duo was signed to Buckshot's Duck Down management, and released their debut single "Bucktown" in 1994, followed by their debut album Dah Shinin' in early 1995. The release was influential over the New York Hip Hop scene of the mid-90s and is now hailed as a rap classic. The duo soon changed their name to the Cocoa Brovaz due to a lawsuit from the Smith & Wesson firearms company, and released their second album The Rude Awakening in 1998, featuring the singles "Won on Won", "Black Trump" and "Bucktown USA". After the temporary demise of Duck Down Records, the duo signed to Rawkus Records, and appeared on a number of Rawkus releases, including the Soundbombing II compilation, the Lyricist Lounge 2 compilation, the Lyricist Lounge III compilation and Talib Kweli's Quality album. The duo returned to Duck Down Records for a 2002 Boot Camp Clik effort The Chosen Few. In 2004, Steele released a solo mixtape titled Amerikkka's Nightmare, a release which was heavily politically influenced. Tek and Steele returned as Smif-N-Wessun in 2005 for the release of their third album Smif 'N' Wessun: Reloaded. Steele is featured on the Boot Camp Clik album The Last Stand, released on July 18, 2006. In 2010 Steele released Amerikkka's Nightmare Part 2, which again featured heavily political lyrical content. Steele is also the older brother of fellow Boot Camp member, Top Dog, who is part of the Originoo Gunn Clappaz.
Smif-n-Wessun/Cocoa Brovaz albums
Boot Camp Clik albums
- Amerikkka's Nightmare (2004)
- Hotstyle Takeover (2007)