L'Trimm

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L'Trimm
OriginMiami, Florida, United States
GenresMiami bass, hip hop
Years active1985–1991
LabelsHot Productions
Atlantic Records
MembersLady Tigra
Bunny D

L'Trimm was a Miami bass hip-hop duo composed of Lady Tigra and Bunny D, two women from Kendall, Florida (an area of Dade County, slightly south-west of Miami). The group recorded three albums for Atlantic Records: Grab It! in 1988, Drop That Bottom in 1989 (which led The Source to name the group Hip-Hop Goddesses of the Month), and Groovy in 1991.

Early years[edit]

The Lady Tigra (Rachel de Rougemont) and Bunny D. (Elana Cager) met in high school, and regularly attended Skylight Express, a teen-night dance club in Kendall that featured live performances by national hip-hop artists (including LL Cool J and Salt-N-Pepa), as well as local Miami bass music and artists (such as 2 Live Crew and the Gucci Crew). They were featured dancers on the syndicated TV show Miami Teen Express that was taped and aired every week throughout South Florida, Atlanta, Metro New York and was produced by Douglas Productions which produced a string of local and syndicated cable programs. Lady Tigra and Trikki Nikki (I Touched This) were best friends and wrote rhymes together when one fateful night they met a kindred spirit in Bunny D.at Skylight Express and invited her onto the stage. The girls quickly struck up a friendship when they discovered their shared love of all things hip-hop. Tigra was an amateur graffiti artist, poet and break-dancer from Hollis, Queens who wrote rhymes around her Haitian, French and American roots. Bunny D was a classically trained dancer who went to a performing arts school and also wrote hip-hop lyrics. The duo formed a group called XTC and would battle boys during their lunch period, ultimately bringing their underground street and art school polish together to form L'Trimm. Female emcees were a rarity at the time and the girls soon gained the attention of local rapper Mighty Rock of the group Double Deuce, who used to drive them home from school. One afternoon, Mighty Rock needed to stop by the Hot Productions studios. During the meeting, Tigra and Bunny went into a recording booth and began rhyming for fun. Paul Klein of Hot Productions caught the girls and employed Larry Davis to construct some hook-oriented tracks for the group, around the girls' pre-written rhymes. Trikki Nikki went to a different high-school by that time so the trio was destined to be a duo but she was later brought in to do her solo record, a comeback to MC Hammer's "Can't Touch This" which received local accolades. Tigra was 15 years old and Bunny was 17 years old when the girls signed with Hot Productions.

Group history[edit]

The group took its new name from a then popular designer brand of blue jeans (Trim), and added the L' prefix to give it a French feel. The song "Grab It!" became a local hit and was followed by an album of the same name. Later there was some controversy when JJ Fad released its hit "Supersonic" because some[who?] said it mirrored the cadence and style of "Grab It!" too closely.[1] Shortly after, "Cars with the Boom", an ode to subwoofers, reached #54 on the Billboard Hot 100[2] and a national tour followed. Atlantic Records picked up the group's first album and signed a deal to distribute L'Trimm's second album, Drop That Bottom, which included a remix of "Grab It!". The album was a minor success.

L'Trimm became dissatisfied with the direction their music was taking once co-writers were put in charge of producing their third album, Groovy. At the same time, Miami indie labels began to speculate that the Miami bass sound would never break through to mainstream national audiences. As Hot Productions began to look for new creative inspiration, the group hired representation in the form of managers and lawyers. A stalemate was reached and the group abandoned the sessions of its third album, Groovy. With plenty of vocal outtakes left in the studio from previous sessions, Hot Productions continued creating the album without the artists' input. The resulting album had more of a house and new jack swing sound, sold poorly, failed to find the new market for which it was aiming and was poorly received by critics.[1] Unwilling to compromise their creative input, unable to score another hit with the label's new sound and with its youthful pop-rap style waning in popularity, L'Trimm disbanded.

Life after L'Trimm[edit]

Bunny D became a nurse working in the fields of Geriatrics, Labor and Delivery and Special Needs Children and Adults. She has four children and is married to La Kidd from Philadelphia's Tuff Crew, which released the 1989 hit "My Parta Town". They met while touring together. Bunny is also writing a series of children's books and is designing a clothing line.

After a few years of hosting events in Miami's burgeoning music, arts, fashion and club scenes on South Beach, Lady Tigra moved back to New York City, where she managed nightclubs. In 2008, she moved to Los Angeles and released her first solo project, Please Mr. Boombox (which featured a guest track by MC Lyte), to great critical review and leading to MySpace putting the first track on their sign-in page as video of the month. Tigra wrote and performed the jingle on the Pinkberry website and appeared on Nickelodeon's award-winning children's show Yo Gabba Gabba, where she performed Debbie Deb's "When I Hear Music". In 2010, she collaborated with writer/director J.B. Ghuhman Jr. and music producer Yeti Beats on the soundtrack of the award-winning movie Spork, which had heavy references to 1990s pop-culture.

In 2016 The Lady Tigra appeared in the American documentary film "808 The Movie", directed, co-produced and co-written by Alexander Dunn, co-produced by Arthur Baker, Craig Kallman and Alex Noyer and co-written by Luke Bainbridge. It is narrated by Zane Lowe and documents the history and culture of the Roland TR-808. The film features appearances from Afrika Bambaataa, A Guy Called Gerald, Armand Van Helden, Arthur Baker, A-Trak, Beastie Boys, Bernard Sumner, Chris Barbosa, Chris Frantz, Damon Albarn, David Dewaele, David Guetta, David Noller, Diplo, DJ Mr. Mixx, Fatboy Slim, Felix da Housecat, François Kevorkian, Goldie, Graham Massey, Hank Shocklee, Ian Lewis, Ikutaro Kakehashi, John Benitez, Jim Jonsin, Jimmy Jam, Jori Hulkkonen, Lady Tigra, Lil Jon, Man Parrish, Mike Butcher, Mr. Biggs, Papa Wheelie, Pharrell Williams, Phil Collins, Pretty Tony, Questlove, Remi Kabaka, Richie Hawtin, Rick Rubin, Stephen Dewaele, Stephen Morris, Strafe, T La Rock, Terry Lewis, The G.L.O.B.E., Tiga, Todd Terry, Tom Silverman and Tony Carrasco.

In 2018 Tigra appeared in the 1st Episode of the 2nd season of the Peabody Award winning Netflix docu-series "Hip-Hop Evolution, The Southern Way". She gave commentary on the roots of Southern Hip-Hop alongside other pioneers of the sound Uncle Luke, Disco Rick, Trick Daddy, Brother Marquis, Mr. Mixx, The Geto Boys and UKG.

The Lady Tigra has also acted in and guest appeared on many projects and remains active in NY, Miami and LA's underground Music, Fashion, DJ, Art and Club scenes.

L'Trimm has not released further material but although the group disbanded they remain close friends, with Lady Tigra often referencing her days in L'Trimm with Bunny D. as one of her influences.

In 2008, "Cars with the Boom" was ranked number 95 on VH1's 100 Greatest Songs of Hip Hop.

In 2016, "Cars with the Boom" was ranked 100 in Rolling Stone Magazine's Top 100 Hip Hop Songs of all Time.

Discography[edit]

Albums[edit]

  • 1988: Grab It! (Time-X/Hot Productions HTLP-3307/Atlantic 81925)
  • 1989: Drop That Bottom (Atlantic 82026)
  • 1991: Groovy (Atlantic 82300)

The Lady Tigra

  • 2008: "Please Mr. BoomBox" (High Score Productions)

Singles[edit]

  • L'Trimm
  • 1987: "Grab It"
  • 1988: "Cutie Pie"
  • 1988: "Cars with the Boom"
  • 1989: "Drop That Bottom"
  • 1991: "Get Loose"
  • 1991: "Low Rider"
  • The Lady Tigra Singles
  • 2008: Bass on the Bottom (remixed by Mr. Hahn of Linkin Park)
  • 2009: Stole My Radio (featuring Mc Lyte)
  • 2010: Santa Baby (by Yeti Beats featuring DJ IQ Luna of The Handroids)
  • 2011: Summertime (featuring Fatlip from The Pharcyde)
  • 2012: Thing-a-Ling (Spork Movie Soundtrack)
  • Guest Appearances by The Lady Tigra:
  • 2001: Larry Tee - Supasize
  • 2004: Avenue D + Phiiliip - Pants Down
  • 2006: The Phenomenal Handclap Band - "15 to 20" ft. The Lady Tigra
  • 2009: Jupiter Rising - When the Bass Drops
  • 2012: Staygold - Backseat (featuring Spank Rock, Damian Adore and Lady Tigra)
  • 2015: Ruckus Robiticus - Come Alive
  • 2017: Oliver - Heart Attack (featuring De La Soul)
  • The Lady Tigra Prime Time TV
  • 2008: Dirty Sexy Money featuring Alicia Keys: Switchblade Kitty
  • 2009: The World According to Paris: Switchblade Kitty
  • 2009: The Real World: Bass on the Bottom
  • 2012: Misfits: 15 to 20
  • 2016: Devious Maids: Player of Love

Samples[edit]

Several of their songs contain samples: "Low Rider" samples "Low Rider" by War, "Grab It The Remix" samples James Brown" I Got The Feeling, "Love at First Sight" samples "Gimmie What You Got" by Le Pamplemousse, "Do U Wanna Get Funky" samples "Do You Wanna Get Funky with Me" by Peter Brown and "Be My Love" samples "UFO" by ESG.[3]

In 2005, DJ Jay-R released "My Other Car Is a Beatle", a mashup of L'Trimm's "Cars with the Boom", Gary Numan's "Cars", and the Beatles' "Drive My Car".[4]

In 2008, music producer J.R. Rotem remade "Cars with the Boom" for musical duo Prima J's self-titled album song, "Boom".

In 2014, "Cars with the Boom" was interpolated by Kat Lopez feat. Q-York on "Walang Masama (Taba)".

In 2018, Real Housewives alum Ericka Jayne released her single, "Cars". The song interpolates the chorus of L'Trimm's famous single "Cars With the Boom" (1988)

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Shapiro, Peter (2005) "L'Trimm", in The Rough Guide to Hip-Hop, Rough Guides, ISBN 1-84353-263-8
  2. ^ http://www.billboard.com/charts/hot-100/1988-11-12
  3. ^ [1]
  4. ^ [2][permanent dead link]

External links[edit]