|Song by Ice Cube|
|from the album Death Certificate|
|Released||October 29, 1991|
|Genre||Hardcore hip hop, West Coast hip hop|
"No Vaseline" is a diss track by Ice Cube from his second album, Death Certificate. The song was produced by Ice Cube and Sir Jinx. The UK release of Death Certificate omitted this song, along with the 46-second long "Black Korea".
The song contains vicious lyrics and remarks towards Ice Cube's former group, N.W.A, which Ice Cube left in December 1989 due to royalty issues. The antagonists are his former bandmates, Eazy-E, Dr. Dre, MC Ren, DJ Yella and their manager, Jerry Heller, whom Ice Cube blames for causing the rift in the group. Ice Cube recorded this song in response to the comments N.W.A made towards him in their albums 100 Miles and Runnin' and Niggaz4Life.
The first minute of the song is a reference to N.W.A's "Message to B.A.", in which they call Ice Cube "Benedict Arnold" as well as an "Ice-T wannabe". Ice Cube then begins his full-blown diss on the group and their manager.
Ice Cube addresses Eazy-E and Heller with particularly harsh words, criticizing Eazy's decision to align himself with Heller ("Heard you both got the same bank account/Dumb nigga, What you thinkin' 'bout?") and accusing both Eazy-E and Heller of unfairly exploiting the rest of the group ("You little maggot, Eazy E-turned-faggot/With your manager, fella - fuckin' MC Ren, Dr. Dre, and Yella"). Ice Cube also refers to his decision to leave Ruthless Records in the lyric: "You lookin' like straight bozos, I saw it comin', that's why I went solo ... You got jealous when I got my own company. But I'm a man, and ain't nobody humpin' me." Cube also references Eazy's appearance at the lunch benefiting the Republican Senatorial Inner Circle, hosted by then-President George H. W. Bush, repeatedly saying, "I never have dinner with the President."
The song appears on the Death Row Greatest Hits compilation album. Although the song was not released on Death Row Records, it is believed that Suge Knight included it as an act of animosity towards Dr. Dre as the song includes numerous disses towards him. The word "Jew" is censored on the album although it is not on Death Certificate (the introduction is also removed). "We're not asking Ice Cube to mask the reality of the streets," observed Rabbi Abraham Cooper of the Los Angeles Jewish human rights organization, the Simon Wiesenthal Center. "By all means flag the social problems, but don't exploit them by turning a professional spat between a former manager and an artist into a racial dispute." "It's wrong for the rabbi to call me anti-Semitic," Cube responded. "I respect Jewish people because they're unified. I wish black people were as unified."
N.W.A never responded to the song as a group. Not long after the release, Dr. Dre left the group, citing lack of monetary compensation. This led to N.W.A's dissolution as its members went on to start their solo careers. Dr. Dre and his protégé Snoop Dogg later dissed Eazy-E in the song "Fuck wit Dre Day (and Everybody's Celebratin')" and Heller in the video, prompting Eazy-E to respond with "Real Muthaphuckkin G's". Dr. Dre also took shots at Ice Cube in "Fuck with Dre Day" with lyrics:
- "Then we gonna creep to South Central
- On a Street Knowledge mission As I steps in the temple
- Spot him, got him, as I pulls out my strap
- Got my chrome to the side of his White Sox hat
- You trying to check my homey, you better check yourself
- Cause when you diss Dre you diss yourself".
When Eazy-E was close to death in 1995 from AIDS, according to an interview with Ice Cube, Cube and Dre visited Eazy in the hospital. Cube stated that when he went to visit Eazy, Dre came out and claimed that Eazy was unconscious. Cube left the hospital without seeing Eazy and told Dre to call him when he wakes up. Dre called Cube and told him that Eazy did not make it.
In popular culture
The song features prominently in the 2015 N.W.A biopic Straight Outta Compton, which shows Ice Cube (portrayed by his real-life son O'Shea Jackson, Jr.) recording the song in response to N.W.A's disses. Heller (portrayed by Paul Giamatti) plays the song for the group, whose members take offense to the various disses. Heller does not seem bothered until the references to Heller as a "Jew", and his reactions (and lack thereof) to the insults lobbed at the group and Heller help lead into Dr. Dre's split from N.W.A.
- "Dazz" by Brick
- "Vapors" by Biz Markie
- "Atomic Dog" by George Clinton
- "Hit by a Car" by Eddie Murphy
- "Turn off the Radio" and "Better off Dead" by Ice Cube
- "It's My Thing" by Marva Whitney
- "To Da Break of Dawn" by LL Cool J
- "Dopeman", "8 Ball", "A Bitch Iz A Bitch," "Message to B.A." and "Prelude" by N.W.A
- "Ball of Confusion (That's What the World Is Today)" by The Temptations
- Pareles, Jon (December 8, 1991). "POP VIEW; Should Ice Cube's Voice Be Chilled?". The New York Times.
- "Death Certificate controversy". Rockrap.com.
- Owen, Frank: '"…because it rhymes with crew"', Select, January 1992, pp37–39
- CamCaponeNews (2013-04-21), Ice Cube-Talks last Time Seeing Eazy-E & Making Of "Boyz InThe Hood", retrieved 2016-06-06