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OriginUnited States
GenresHip hop, jazz rap
Years active1981–1992
LabelsTommy Boy/Warner Bros. Records
MembersPrince Paul (Paul Edward Huston)
MC Delite (Marvin Shahid Wright)
Frukwan (Arnold Hamilton)
Wise (Leonardo Roman)
Daddy-O (Glenn K. Bolton)
DBC (Martin Nemley)
Bobby Simmons

Stetsasonic was an American hip hop group formed in 1981 in Brooklyn, New York City, New York.


Originally, the group was known as The Stetson Brothers, after Stetson hats. There were three MCs, Wise the Human Mix Machine, and Prince Paul. The Stetson Brothers changed its name and style to Stetsasonic the Hip-Hop Band and clinched a deal with Tommy Boy Records when DBC came up with and played the funky bassline for its debut single "If You Can't Say It All Just Say STET", live for Tom Silverman, owner of Tommy Boy Records. After a few months of the single being in regular rotation on radio stations, the group released its first album On Fire (1986).[1] The album received mixed reviews, though the follow-ups, In Full Gear and Blood, Sweat & No Tears were critically acclaimed.

A 1988 New York Times article said that the group mirrored the rise of artistic, profound rap music: "While pop's political commentary often seems secondary to catchy melodies and commercial acceptability, rap's tough sound sharpens its commentary".[2] As a "hip hop band", dependent on instruments as well as turntables, the group was also known for live shows, though sometimes the "rap-show format prevented Stetsasonic from employing the band instrumentation and studio layering that make their records so distinctive."[3]


The group disbanded soon after the release of Blood, Sweat & No Tears.

Frukwan and Prince Paul were founding members of the Gravediggaz, while the latter also became a record producer, as did Daddy-O, who worked with Freestyle Fellowship, Mary J. Blige, Positive K and the Red Hot Chili Peppers, among others.[1]

Prince Paul went on to produce the trio De La Soul.

Former member Bobby Simmons pursued work in public access, forming the show Flava Videos in the mid-1990s on Channel 26 (New York). In 2017, Simmons was a contestant on the FOX game show Beat Shazam where he was partnered with singer Shannon.

MC Delite is currently the President and CEO of Flight Entertainment and a public speaker.[4]

DBC went on to produce tracks for Third World and the Cookie Crew, among others. In 1995, he became the owner and operator of Raw Beat Productions a music & video recording studio, located in Philadelphia, PA. In 2016, he invented the MN-1 Advanced Portable Power System, which is a sustainable energy source with a swappable battery compartment and solar-based charging system. [5]

Wise also participated in a few commercials in which he lends his beatbox sounds. One was for Campbell's Soup in which a cartoon of a B-boy bear kicks a ferocious beat. This commercial was aired amid Saturday morning cartoons. He was also featured in a documentary on the art of the human beatbox called Breath Control: the History of the Human Beat Box,[3] which was shown at the Tribeca Film Festival and also featured fellow human percussionists such as Doug E. Fresh, Biz Markie, Ready Rock C, and Emanon.


  • On Fire
    • Released: 1986
    • Billboard 200 chart position: -
    • R&B/Hip-Hop chart position: #32
    • Singles: "Just Say Stet", "Faye", "A.F.R.I.C.A."
  • In Full Gear
    • Released: 1988
    • Billboard 200 chart position: -
    • R&B/Hip-Hop chart position: #20
    • Singles: "Sally", "Talkin' All that Jazz", "Float On"
  • Blood, Sweat & No Tears
    • Released: July 1, 1991
    • Billboard 200 chart position: -
    • R&B/Hip-Hop chart position: #75
    • Singles:"Speaking Of A Girl Named Suzy","No B.S. Allowed", "So Let the Fun Begin"


Official Facebook Page [6]

  1. ^ a b Stetsasonic at AllMusic
  2. ^ Watrous, Peter. Recordings; Rappers Keep Their Music's Content Fresh, The New York Times, 10 January 1988.
  3. ^ Palmer, Robert. Rock: 'Def Jam 87,' Rap at the Garden, The New York Times, 5 September 1987.
  4. ^ Archived 2014-04-07 at the Wayback Machine
  6. ^

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