Filed under: Speaker Smashers,Steady Bootleggin',Tragedy Special
Written by: Robbie Ettelson
Back when Marley Marl was making records in his sister’s lounge room, slapping echo on everything to compensate for the fact that he didn’t have any reverb to play with, he cut some seriously raw, gritty tracks. 14 year old Percy (who was calling himself MC Jade at the time) used to bug Marl to let him get on a record, and when he finally agreed to give him a shot, “Coke Is It” was born.
When it was released on the NIA label, the song was titled “The Tragedy (Don’t Do It)”, thus eliminating any possible legal action from everyone’s favourite peddlers of carbonated swine juice. It’s unclear why it was credited to The Super Kids, since I’m pretty sure that Percy had adopted the Tragedy handle at this stage….
This track is still massive thanks to it’s brutal, distorted snares and hi-hats which underpin the crude guitar stabs and squeeky, echo-soaked vocals. Everything in the mix is turned-up to twelve, and when the Captain Caveman scratches kick in, you’re ears will feel like they’ve just been slashed with a broken bottle of Becks – which is exactly the effect that Marley was aiming for.
Tragedy – Coke Is It (NIA, 1985)
Intelligent Hoodlum – Your Tragedy (“Coke Is It” Remix) (Intelligent Hoodlum CD bonus track, A&M, 1989) [Thanks to Lotuz for hooking this up.]
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