How to Wreck a Nice Beach

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Something To That Effect

Another Summer

By Dave Tompkins at 11:19pm ET

(Courtesy of Chris Lasalle* and Dave Funkenklein)



This team photo was taken at the New Music Seminar in July of either 1989 or ’90.

The white guy in the middle, Dave Funkenklein**, once swore to me that he would deliver advance cassettes of the second Organized Konfusion album to the NMS, despite Disney’s filibustering, not to mention all the chemo. (And he did.) Funkenklein could not be stopped. He once drove to Tijuana with a malignant tumor in his spine to see Rodney O and Joe Cooley.

The guy indicating he’s number one, wearing the Cut Master DC polo, is Cut Master DC.

He appears in the vocoder book scratching records with basketballs.

The guy holding the D-Moet sign, is not D-Moet but King Sun. The last time I saw King Sun, he was in a similar position while being hauled off by a security octopus after a brawl that may have implicated Coolio, at an overbooked NMS event that included a surprise (surprise!) appearance by KRS-ONE, Mad Lion, the UMC’s, all the UMC’s buddies from Staten Island, and the Wu-Tang Clan, in their entirety.

The guy to the left of the D-Moet sign in the white Kangol is D-Moet, who used to be down with Excalibur.

The red topsider just behind King Sun’s left elbow houses the foot of Grandmaster Caz.

The guy to the right of Caz is Steady B, possibly wearing the same Fila windbreaker he rocked on the cover of What’s My Name?, and sadly now serving a life sentence in Houtzdale, PA.

The guy dead center, normally in a Ninja mask, is UTFO’S DJ Mix Master Ice.

The guy in the Gucci & Tenille hat, upon which his gold teeth once appeared, by themselves, is Just-Ice.

Please help me identify the others.



*I first met Chris Lasalle when the Source Tour came to The Zoo in Raleigh, NC with Lord Finesse, Organized Konfusion, Roxanne Shante, Biz, and The Almighty RSO. Before taking the stage, the RSO dispatched a crew of girls to case the building. They wore Boston Bruin jackets and spandex shorts and communicated with the RSO limo by walkie-talkie. The evening concluded with gunplay in the parking lot. Apparently, one of Biz’s records caught a bullet and saved the life of Source tour manager Jennifer Perry, who was ducking under the passenger seat. A full recount appeared in The Source’s 50th Anniversary Issue with Flash, Bambaataa and Herc on the cover.



**Here’s a brief excerpt from “Burn Rubber on Plastic Bubbles,” a tribute to Funkenklein that appeared in Jeff Chang’s anthology Total Kaos, as well as Wax Poetics. (Funkenklein once ran his wheelchair down an office hallway paved with bubble-wrap to simulate a drive-by.)

In 1993, a delegation of 18 Samoan rappers went to Disneyland. Averaging 300 pounds a pop, they called themselves Boo-Yaa Tribe. Admission was on the house. At “Pirates of the Caribbean,” Boo-Yaa shattered the standing record for maritime tonnage in an Animatronic buccaneer fantasy. Even more astonishing was that Disney staff had the cannon balls to kick them out (“Please do not agitate the skeletons”), despite the protests of their guardian, who happened to be in a wheelchair. Apparently, Disneyland did not share Boo-Yaa’s enthusiasm for testing the properties of volume and displacement. After all, it’s a small world.

I learned of this rap barnacle when reading “Gangsta Limpin,” a column written by late hip-hop writer/impresario Dave Funkenklein Klein, who as it turned out, had arranged Boo-Yaa’s day on the plank. Klein headed a Disney-owned rap label Hollywood BASIC Recordings and was interested in adding Boo-Yaa to a roster which included a Maxwell Melvins and a group serving life sentences in a New Jersey State prison, Zimbabwe Legit, DJ Shadow, and Organized Konfusion, two guys from Queens who rapped about cytoplasmic disintegration. This may have been counter-intuitive for Disney, but certainly no less hardcore than singing dwarfs, dancing brooms, and a night on Bald Mountain with Chernabog.

Through Funkenklein, I learned that Coolio used to be a fireman, that Bozo the Clown’s manager was named “Morty” and that JVC Force dug Detective Stan “Wojo” Wojciehowicz. Funkenklein downwormed tequila on transatlantic flights with Ultramagnetic and took Erick Sermon to Sea World. In one of his Gangsta Limpin columns, you’d read LA riot commentary, medical reports, inbred music-biz jokes, concerns for Robocop 3, and an offer to swap glossies of Ice T’s wife (Darleen) in exchange for a Wattstax video.


2 Comments »

  1. Dope pic… Looks like it may be from the 1987 New Music Seminar.. The dude in the white, standing next to Cutmaster DC, is the Singing Mc Breeze. He’s the reason I think this is from 87, (I had a dub of the dj and mc battle on vhs.)I think he was wearing the same track suit in the Mc battle, which King Sun won.. He waxed melle mel and caz and anyone else for that matter.

    Comment by Flexo — July 22, 2010 @ 4:55am
  2. Oh yeah an Steady B is still kinda skinny too…

    Comment by Flexo — July 22, 2010 @ 4:57am

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