| February 23, 1999|
23 February 1999
Tommy Boy Entertainment
Hip hop music
| Paul's Coffee Shop
(Long Island, New York)|
Politics of the Business
Prince Paul albums, Hip hop music albums
A Prince Among Thieves is the second studio album by hip hop artist Prince Paul. A Prince Among Thieves was well received by music critics. Music essayist Robert Christgau has called it "the closest thing to a true rock opera you've ever heard".
The concept follows the story of an aspiring young emcee named Tariq, played by emcee Breezly Brewin, who needs to collect money to record a demo tape before a meeting with Wu-Tang Clan leader RZA. The story follows a desperate Tariq, who quits his low-paying job and turns to his friend True, played by emcee Big Sha, who introduces him to drug dealing. The two make their way through the drug world, a police ambush, jail, and, finally, a deadly showdown.
The album features cameos by Kool Keith, Big Daddy Kane, Chubb Rock, Biz Markie, De La Soul, Everlast, Sadat X, Xzibit, Kid Creole, Special Ed, Chris Rock, RZA and Buckshot. A single version and video in the style of a film trailer was also produced. Although conceived as a story that would be filmed, a movie never came about. In an interview, Prince Paul said:
"That was the intention. When I first made it I was inspired by Master P's I'm Bout It, I was like this movie is so poorly shot and it’s popular. I could do that with more star power. I tried to pitch it to Tommy Boy, and they apparently didn’t see the vision. I was like we could make so much money, but they were like 'Yeah, yeah Paul, we’re going to put this million dollars in whatever group' that they had. Then at some point Chris Rock bought the rights to it, but he didn’t do anything with it. So it sits and it sits. If I had the opportunity, if somebody said hey I have a small budget or wanted to get a Kickstarter going, I’d love to put that together."Sample credits
"Steady Slobbin'" is a parody of Ice Cube's song "Steady Mobbin'," and both contain a sample of Average White Band's recording "Reach Out."
"What U Got" contains a sample of Albert King's recording "I'll Play the Blues for You."
"Macula's Theory" contains a sample of Syl Johnson's recording "Wind, Blow Her Back My Way."
"War Party" contains a sample of Gwen McCrae's recording "Love Without Sex".
"MC Hustler" contains a sample of Magnum's recording "Witch Doctor's Brew".
"You Got Shot" contains a sample of Ol' Dirty Bastard's recording "Brooklyn Zoo."
"Central Booking" contains a sample of Lloyd Price's recording "What Did You Do With My Love?"
DJ Evil Dee
Andre (Bless Me) Smith
Ken (Special K) Spellman
1Tariq's Dilemma (Intro)0:38A Prince Among Thieves Wikipedia
3How It All Started1:19