(that, formally, had been born with Disco Daddy and Captain Rapp's Gigolo Rapp in 1981, and that was mainly based in the Los Angeles metropolitan area)
began to compete against Eastern rap thanks to
Ice-T (Tracy Marrow)'s
6n' Da Mornin (1986), the first West-Coast single to become popular nation-wide (and perhaps the first "gangsta-rap" anthem),
his first album Rhyme Pays (1987), the single
and especially his second album Power (1988), a gallery of
harrowing portraits of ghetto violence.
If possible, The Iceberg/Freedom of Speech Just Watch What You Say (1989)
was even more confrontational. But, more than anything else, this album marked
the birth of a truly original West Coast-sound, largely emancipated from the
stereotypes of the East Coast.
The double album Original Gangster (1991) completed the progression
towards an Ice-T aesthetics, as opposed to a mere ideology.
The tales are meant to be more mature (although they often sound just less
powerful) and even positive, suddenly offering a much less violent version
of ghetto life, but the limited ambitions of the words helped focus on
That album's Body Count, a heavy-metal song, became the title of his
following project: Body Count, a heavy-metal band, that released
Body Count (1991), Born Dead (1994), Violent Demise (1997).
For a man who had strived to steer away from the stereotypes of rap, Body Count
was a band that indulged in the stereotypes of heavy-metal in a rather clumsy
and childish manner.
Ice-T's rap albums Home Invasion (1993),
Return of the Real (1996) and
7th Deadly Sin (1999) failed to match the power of his early gangsta-rap.
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