Spank Rock

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Spank Rock
Spank Rock 2014 Press Photo by Thed Jewel, 2013.png
Naeem Juwan, photo by Thed Jewel
Background information
OriginBaltimore, Maryland, United States[1]
GenresHip hop,[2] electronic[3]
LabelsBad Blood Records, Big Dada, Downtown Records, Boysnoize Records
Associated actsAmanda Blank, Santigold, Boys Noize, Benny Blanco, Armand Van Helden, The Avalanches, Bon Iver
MembersNaeem Juwan
Past membersAlex Epton

Naeem Juwan, better known by his stage name Spank Rock, is an American rapper and songwriter from Baltimore. He rose to fame with his 2006 album YoYoYoYoYo, which was produced by former group member Alex Epton (XXXChange). A harbinger of post-millennial alternative rap,[4] the duo became known for its mixing of disparate hip hop and club genres, including Baltimore club,[5] Miami bass,[6] electro music and rock.

In 2007, Epton left the group to pursue his own production[7] while Juwan went on to release the Bangers & Cash EP (2007) with pop producer Benny Blanco. After a five-year contract struggle with his label Downtown Records,[8] Juwan released his sophomore LP Everything Is Boring and Everyone Is a Fucking Liar (2011) with a range of producers including Boys Noize, Le1f,[9] XXXChange, and Squeak E. Clean.[10]


Juwan grew up in West Baltimore in a row home alongside five sisters and two brothers.[11] As a teenager, Juwan frequented clubs such as Paradox, where DJs played Baltimore club music. In high school, his older sister introduced him to Brooklyn-based producer J. Period, known for producing records by underground rappers Mos Def and Artifacts. J. Period mentored Juwan and helped him improve his skills as a rapper for some time. After moving to Philadelphia and dropping out of college, Juwan met fellow Baltimore native Alex Epton, who had studied composition at the New England Conservatory of Music in Boston and learned studio production as an intern at the DFA Records studio in New York.[11]

Juwan and Epton started performing under the name Spank Rock together in Philadelphia and Phoenixville, where their reputation quickly increased. They later toured with Hollertronix and M.I.A.. They also toured with Beck in 2006.[12] Spank Rock's debut album YoYoYoYoYo was released in 2006 on the Big Dada record label. Their single, "Bump", was named Single of the Year by Xfm London breakfast DJ Lauren Laverne in 2006.[13]

In late 2007, Alex Epton aka XXXchange, left Spank Rock to pursue his own production while Naeem Juwan signed a deal with Downtown Records.[14] Spank Rock's first Downtown Records release came in the form of fall 2007's Benny Blanco & Spank Rock Present: Bangers & Cash EP, a 2 Live Crew inspired 5 song EP.[15] Spank Rock also contributed a rap on the "Benny Blanco" remix of the track Heart Beat Rock; taken from Australian singer Kylie Minogue's 2007/8 Grammy nominated album "X".

In 2010, MC Spank Rock was featured along with The View's Kyle Falconer on "The Bike Song" by Mark Ronson, which featured on Ronson's 2010 album Record Collection. He was also the touring rapper on the album's 2010 UK tour.

In September 2011, Spank Rock released his second full-length album, Everything Is Boring and Everyone Is a Fucking Liar on his own label, Bad Blood Records.[16] premiered the first single from the album, titled "Energy," produced by Boys Noize,[17][18] and later selected the single "Nasty" as Best New Track.[19] Rolling Stone premiered the album in September 2011 on their website.[20] The album featured production from Boys Noize, XXXChange, Sam Spiegel, and Le1f, as well as appearances by Santigold and Big Freedia.[10][17] After the release of his album, Spank Rock was one of the faces of Alexander Wang's 2011 T collection, along with Santigold.[21]

In 2012, Spank Rock released a second EP, "E. I. B. A. E. I. A. F. L. Remixes", a collection of various producers' remixes of tracks from his sophomore LP. In 2012 Naeem Juwan co-wrote the Boys Noize-produced track "Look at These Hoes" from Santigold's LP Master of My Make-Believe.[10][22]

In 2014, Spank Rock released his third EP, "The Upside," on his own Bad Blood Records and Boysnoize Records, with production contributions from Miami-based bounce producer Kid Kamillion, German electronic dance producer Boys Noize, Don Loemax and Damian Taylor. The EP premiered on December 9, 2014 following a premiere stream of the entire EP on Dazed & Confused.[23] Lead single "Gully" was remixed by Brodinski and Switch, and has received extensive play on BBC Radio 1.[24]

In 2016, Spank Rock became part of The Avalanches' touring line-up. He provides the raps from the Wildflower album, as well as providing toasting and backing vocals.




  • "Put That Pussy on Me" (2005)
  • "Rick Rubin" (2006)
  • "Sweet Talk" (2006)
  • "Bump" (2006)
  • "Energy" (2011)
  • "Car Song" (2011)
  • "I Know a Place" (feat. Armand Van Helden) (2014)
  • "Gully" / "Vertigo" (2014)
  • "Gully (Brodinski Remix)" (2014)
  • "Assassin (ft. Amanda Blank)" / "Back Up" (2014)


  • Benny Blanco & Spank Rock Present: Bangers & Cash (2007; Downtown)
  • E. I. B. A. E. I. A. F. L. Remixes (2012; Bad Blood)
  • The Upside (2014; Bad Blood / Boysnoize Records)

Other releases[edit]




  1. ^ "RBMA Radio - Spank Rock (Big Dada, Boys Noize Rec., Baltimore) - Train Wreck Mix". 2011-11-03. Archived from the original on 2012-05-27. Retrieved 2012-06-07.
  2. ^ "AllMusic". Rovi. Retrieved 24 December 2012.
  3. ^ "iTunes - Music - Everything Is Boring and Everyone Is a F-ing Liar by Spank Rock". 2011-09-27. Retrieved 2012-06-07.
  4. ^ Duncan Cooper. "Spank Rock: DTF DADT". The Fader.
  5. ^ John Bush. "Everything Is Boring & Everyone Is a F---ing Liar Album Review". All Music.
  6. ^ S. Pajot. "Spank Rock Feeds his Serious Need for Speed". Miami New Times Blog.
  7. ^ "Exclusive: DJ XXXChange Is No Longer In Spank Rock". Big Shot Mag. Archived from the original on 2014-05-13.
  8. ^ "Spank Rock Biography". All Music.
  9. ^ "Spank Rock feat. Big Freedia: Nasty". Archived from the original on 2011-11-13.
  10. ^ a b c "Liner Notes for Everything Is Boring and Everyone Is a Fucking Liar".
  11. ^ a b "Spank Rock Biography", Resident Advisor.
  12. ^ "Baltimore's Spank Rock: Unhinged but Hot", Porter, Christopher,, October 30, 2006.
  13. ^ Xfm DJs' Top 5s of 2006
  14. ^ "Spank Rock Goes Downtown: Will They Be the New Gnarls Barkley?", The Editors, The Daily Swarm, June 20, 2007.
  15. ^ "Spank Rock's 2 Live Crew Inspired EP Revealed", Thompson, Paul, Pitchfork, September 4, 2007.
  16. ^ "Spank Rock – 'Energy'". 2012-05-05. Retrieved 2012-06-07.
  17. ^ a b "Spank Rock Returns With New Album". 2011-06-07. Retrieved 2012-06-07.
  18. ^ "Energy".
  19. ^ Carrie Battan, Spank Rock "Nasty",
  20. ^ "Exclusive Stream: Spank Rock's Rowdy New Album". 2011-09-22.
  21. ^ "Exclusive: Santigold And Spankrock For T By Alexander Wang".
  22. ^ "'Look at These Hoes' liner notes".
  23. ^ "Stream Spank Rock's 'The Upside' EP".
  24. ^ "Spank Rock profile on BBC One".
  25. ^ "Excerpt: Mister Loney (2007)".
  26. ^ "Music from Entourage".

External links[edit]