Respect the Classics
Universal drops hip-hop reissues
Earlier this month, Universal Music Enterprises launched a new series called Respect the Classics that will serve to reissue a number of titles from various artists associated with its catalog of labels including Def Jam, Interscope, Priority, and Virgin.
For the first run of titles, five albums are reissued across a variety of formats, most associated with the NWA family:
NWA - Straight Outta Compton (180 gram vinyl)
NWA - NWA & The Posse (CD, digital)
Eazy-E - Eazy-Duz-It (CD, digital, 180 gram vinyl)
Ice Cube - Amerikkka’s Most Wanted (180 gram vinyl)
EPMD – Strictly Business (CD, digital)
While the remastered vinyl titles are strict album reissues pressed onto high-quality vinyl (no download codes included), two of the CD titles, Eazy-Duz-It and Strictly Business, are subtitled as 25th Anniversary editions. The Eazy-E album includes 12-inch remixes of “We Want Eazy” and “Still Talkin’,” and the EPMD reissue includes five bonus tracks that were initially released on 12-inch singles, including “I’m Housin’ (U.K. Mix),” dub versions of “You Gots to Chill,” “You’re a Customer,” and “It’s My Thing,” and a “Percapella” mix of “You Gots to Chill.”
NWA ushered the West Coast to the mainstream while changing the landscape of hip-hop and popular culture with their brash street rhymes and hard-core production and launched a number of solo careers that continued their frenzied styles.
EPMD hailed from hip-hop’s home base and traded verses over the sounds of Eric Clapton, Aretha Franklin, Roger & Zapp, and Kool and the Gang. As Parish Smith recalls in the liner notes, thirty days after being invited to open for Run-DMC alongside Jazzy Jeff and the Fresh Prince, Public Enemy, and Stetsasonic, Strictly Business went gold.
More titles will be released in the coming months, including DMX, Public Enemy, Slick Rick, Onyx, Gangstarr, and 50 Cent. Check the campaign’s official site for more details.