Slave & Otis

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Slave & Otis
Born Mark James Williams (1971)
Otis Frizzell (1971)
Nationality New Zealand
Other names MC OJ & Rhythm Slave, Joint Force, Opto (Frizzell)
Occupation

Slave: MC, TV presenter, radio host, record producer

Otis: MC, TV presenter, radio host, graffiti artist, tattoo artist, graphic designer, chef
Known for MC OJ & Rhythm Slave, Joint Force, Mo' Show

Mark James "Slave" Williams (born 1971) and Otis Frizzell (born 1971) are a New Zealand duo known as hip hop MCs and television and radio presenters. Together they are known for their musical work in the 1990s as MC OJ & Rhythm Slave and Joint Force, and their radio and television work in later years.

As well as their work as a duo, each is known for his own achievements. Otis Frizzell is an internationally acclaimed artist, particularly for his work in graffiti art, sometimes under the name Opto.[1] WIth his wife Sarah Frizzell, he also runs an acclaimed taco truck in Auckland.[2][3] As MC Slave, Mark Williams produces and MCs with Wellington group Fat Freddy's Drop.[4]

MC OJ & Rhythm Slave[edit]

The duo's first creative collaboration was as hip hop duo MC OJ & Rhythm Slave, best known for their 1990 single "That's The Way (Positivity)", based around a sample from "That's the Way (I Like It)" by KC and the Sunshine Band. The pair met at Selwyn College in the late '80s and started performing together, playing at house parties and getting minor gigs.[5] They were signed to Murray Cammick's Southside Records and released their first single, "That's The Way (Positivity)" in 1990, reaching #12 in the charts. Further singles included "Money Worries" with guest vocals from Push Push frontman Mikey Havoc; and safe sex anthem "Body Rhymes (Protect Yourself)" with guest vocals from Teremoana Rapley of Moana and the Moahunters.[6][7]

Joint Force[edit]

In the mid 1990s, Mark and Otis teamed up with DJ and producer DLT of Upper Hutt Posse and formed the hip hop group Joint Force. They released the One Inch Punch EP in 1995 on BMG records. The trio (along with director Josh Frizzell) also made an ambitious two-part video for their single "Static", that was nominated for Best Music Video at the 1996 New Zealand Music Awards.[8] With the track remixed by Mario Caldato, Jr., "Static (part 1)" was based around a stylish, Tarantino-inspired crime drama, with little focus on the song itself.[9] "Static (part 2)" was a basic video of the trio performing the song in a dark studio.[10]

This was the duo's last project as hip hop performers, though the pair remained active in the New Zealand hip hop community. Slave produced the 1998 compilation album Aotearoa Hip Hop Vol 1 and was a regular host of the Aotearoa hip hop summit.[5]

Radio[edit]

In 1994, Slave was approached by bFM radio station manager Graeme Hill to put together a weekly hip hop show, along with DJ Sir-Vere, Bass and DLT. This became the long-running True School Hip Hop Show.[5][11] Together Mark and Otis were the long-running hosts of their radio show Slave and Otis, the Wednesday Drive show on bFM. In 2004 the duo moved to host the breakfast show on Auckland station Base FM.[12]

Mo' Show[edit]

From 2001 to 2003, Mark and Otis starred in their own TV series, Mo' Show on TV2. Inspired by hip hop culture, the duo travelled around the world with digital cameras, exploring places and meeting interesting and creative people, including celebrities.[13] The series was nominated for Best Entertainment Series at the 2002 New Zealand Television Awards, and won in the same category at the 2003 awards.

Other work[edit]

At the 2014 New Zealand Music Awards, Slave and Otis presented the Legacy Award to funk-rock group Supergroove.[14]

Discography[edit]

Albums as MC OJ & Rhythm Slave[edit]

Year Title Details Peak chart
positions
NZ
1991 What Can We Say?
  • Label: Southside Records
  • Catalogue: L 30660

Singles as MC OJ & Rhythm Slave[edit]

Year Title Peak chart
positions
Album
NZ[15]
1990 "That's The Way (Positivity)" 12 What Can We Say?
1991 "Money Worries" 36
"Body Rhymes (Protect Yourself)"
1992 "Joined at the Hip Hop"
"—" denotes a recording that did not chart or was not released in that territory.

EPs as Joint Force[edit]

Year Title Details Peak chart
positions
NZ[16]
1995 One Inch Punch
  • Label: BMG
  • Catalogue: 74321 273 202
  • Format: CD
21
1995 Burntime Style Remix
  • Label: BMG
  • Catalogue: JOINT1
  • Format: 12" vinyl

Singles as Joint Force[edit]

Year Title Peak chart
positions
Album
NZ[16]
1995 "Static" 21 One Inch Punch EP
"—" denotes a recording that did not chart or was not released in that territory.

Awards[edit]

Year Nominee/work Award Result
1992 MC OJ & Rhythm Slave - What Can We Say? 1992 NZ Music Awards - Album of the Year Nominated[17]
Dick Frizzell - What Can We Say? 1992 NZ Music Awards - Best Cover Nominated[17]
1996 Otis Frizzell 1996 NZ Music Awards - Most Promising Male Vocalist Nominated[8]
Joint Force 1996 NZ Music Awards - Most Promising Group Nominated[8]
M Noonan and J Frizzell - "Static (Part 1)" 1996 NZ Music Awards - Best Video Nominated[8]
2002 Mo' Show 2002 NZ Television Awards - Best Entertainment Series Nominated[18]
2003 Mo' Show 2003 NZ Television Awards - Best Entertainment Series Won[19]
2009 Otis Frizzell - Dr Boondigga and the Big BW 2009 NZ Music Awards - Best Cover Nominated[20]

External links[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "TBI Q&A: Otis Frizzell". The Big Idea. Retrieved 3 April 2013. 
  2. ^ "THE LUCKY TACO". The Food Hub. Retrieved 3 April 2013. 
  3. ^ "Crowdfunding key for taco truck". Stuff. Fairfax. Retrieved 3 September 2015. 
  4. ^ "Fat Freddy's Drop". Facebook. Retrieved 3 April 2013. 
  5. ^ a b c Shute, Gareth. "MC OJ and Rhythm Slave Profile". Audio Culture. Retrieved 20 August 2013. 
  6. ^ "MC OJ & Rhythm Slave". NZ On Screen. Retrieved 3 April 2013. 
  7. ^ "MC OJ and Rhythm Slave". Amplifier. Retrieved 3 April 2013. 
  8. ^ a b c d "1996 Winners". NZ Music Awards. Archived from the original on 19 April 2014. Retrieved 3 April 2013. 
  9. ^ "Joint Force - Static (Part 1)". YouTube. Retrieved 3 April 2013. 
  10. ^ "Joint Force - Static, part 2". YouTube. Retrieved 3 April 2013. 
  11. ^ "AKL: The World Famous True School Hip-Hop Show". Back 2 Basics. Retrieved 20 August 2013. 
  12. ^ "Slave and Otis Head to Base". NZ Musician. Retrieved 3 April 2013. 
  13. ^ "Mo' Show". NZ On Screen. Retrieved 3 April 2013. 
  14. ^ "Lorde reigns supreme at 2014 VNZMAs". Scoop (Press release). Recorded Music NZ. 20 November 2014. Retrieved 21 November 2014. 
  15. ^ "MC OJ & Rhythm Slave discography". Charts.org.nz. Retrieved 3 April 2013. 
  16. ^ a b "Joint Force discography". Charts.org.nz. Retrieved 3 April 2013. 
  17. ^ a b "1992 Winners". NZ Music Awards. Archived from the original on 19 April 2014. Retrieved 3 April 2013. 
  18. ^ "TV Guide New Zealand Television Awards 2002". Scoop. Retrieved 3 April 2013. 
  19. ^ "Public chooses Campbell at NZ Television Awards". NZ Herald. 22 August 2003. Retrieved 3 April 2013. 
  20. ^ "2009 Winners". NZ Music Awards. Archived from the original on 8 August 2011. Retrieved 3 April 2013.