Rap Videos Are Corny
Wednesday July 26th 2006,
Filed under: Not Your Average,Video Clips
Written by:

When I was younger, I tried to steer clear of rap videos, since they were almost always a let-down. A song such as “Follow The Leader” paints such a vivid visual picture in your head when you hear it that some low-budget Untouchables style video could never hope to do it justice.1

Admittedly, the introduction of chicks in bikinis, hot-pants and various other slutty gear helped me watch some awful songs over the years, but the rest of the time it’s just the same old “walk through the block with your weed carriers” scenario. Apart from the stock-standard video concepts, in the late 80′s and early 90′s there was a lot more experimental style clips being made, as they tried to do something different with very limited budgets. Sometimes they were a little too different…

Unkut.com’s Top Three Cheesiest Rap Videos Ever:

3. “Ring The Alarm” Fu-Schnickens

As much as I’m ashamed to admit it, I copped the first Fu-Schnickens tape when it came out, on the strength of the three songs that Tribe Called Quest did the beats for. For those of you lucky enough to have never heard them, the Fu’s were the first group to really rock the whole Kung-Fu vibe in their music and videos. Unlike the Wu-Tang Clan, however, they did it in a really cheesy manner by setting their first clip in a flying Chinese take-out box. Almost as stupid as the fact that Jive Records released a Greatest Hits LP of these guys when they only ever released two LPs!

2. “You Gots To Get Down” Kwame

Choosing the cheesiest clip in this kid’s resume was really tough, considering that every video featured polkadots and dudes with blonde streaks in their flat-tops. But there is no doubt that this effort takes the cake, as this clip manages to showcase just about every horrible fashion trend from the late 80′s and combine it with my other pet hate – dudes pretending to play musical instruments in videos! Kwame new his shit when it came to beats, but his various “Bone Age” themed videos indicate that he should never be allowed near a camera again.

1. “Blue Cheese” UMC’s

Not only was this song gay, but the clip almost defies description. Kool Kim and Hass G jump around over-enthusiastically in Day-Glo t-shirts while pulling cheesy faces with every line. There’s also a lot of uneccessary spinning around and fruity dancing.2 If that wasn’t bad enough, halfway through we’re greeted with the arrival of the cheapest looking puppet of all time – a slug-like creature that’s clearly some kids failed attempt paper-mache (most likely the handywork of one of the youngsters in the audience). It’s pretty remarkable that these guys actually lasted for a couple of albums when you consider that this abortion was their debut video.3 As you might expect, when they returned with a second LP two years later, they’d studied-up on the latest Das-EFX videos and dressed in the standard “rugged” apparel of the era (as demonstrated in the video for “Time To Set It Straight“).

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  1. 1. Not to say that Ra didn’t do his thing in the clip, but his descriptions of astral travelling didn’t exactly make me think of a mob flick when I first heard it.[back]
  2. 2. Although it shouldn’t be suprising considering that their first song was called “Invaders of My Fruit Basket”![back]
  3. 3. To their credit, the second single “One To Grow On” is actually really good, assuming you can ignore the clip.[back]

33 Comments so far
Leave a comment

I like the song Blue Cheese, however were in agreement over the video for it.

Comment by Eric 07.26.06 @

I remember that UMCs dropped the year before AND after the Wu, if memory serves me. So, initially they were on the sh@t you see above, then after 36 Chambers, came back out HARD. I read a feature on them in the Source after the 2nd LP dropped, and was amused at how they tried to say that the label was responsible for their first incarnation, and how what was being seen afterwards was their true selves. They WERE from Staten, mind you.

Comment by fosterakahunter 07.26.06 @

C’mon. You know you only copped that Fu-Schniks off the Shaq co-sign.

Comment by Nordy 07.26.06 @

When I was in grade school, I played that first Fu Schnickens tape all the time. I was a true Fu Schnick back in the day. Chip Fu was down with Flavor Unit for a minute.

Comment by fresh 07.26.06 @

Yeah, Ive recently had to reconsider Blue Cheese. I happened to move to Staten that year and they repped Stapleton/Park Hill before the Wu.
This song is gay as in “happy and gay”..why is there no happiness in hip hop anymore?
ANYWAYS..ever notice on MARTIN he had the UMC’s poster in his fucking living room? I always thought that strange..

Comment by bk 07.26.06 @

The Blue Cheese video isn’t so bad.

Comment by bedouin 07.26.06 @

forget the video for blue cheese,you got to remember around in them days it was hammer time so that explains the dancing and i think wild pitch were trying to market them as a new kid n play duo or something but the lp friuts of nature lp still pisses on 95% of shit what comes out today for pure originality,never felt their das efx reinicarnation a few years later,a pity

Comment by shahid 07.26.06 @

“dudes pretending to play musical instruments in videos!”

hahah, I hate that shit too… but I must say that I am quite amused by that awful dancing that went on in the videos back then. And videos of people walking around in the hood are the best, particularly if displayed in black and white.

Comment by Double R 07.26.06 @

Can someone post the entire UMCs LP on yousendit or something like that?

Comment by bedouin 07.26.06 @

“You know you only copped that Fu-Schniks off the Shaq co-sign.”

Ha, I think that was on the second tape though.

“the lp friuts of nature lp still pisses on 95% of shit what comes out today for pure originality”

It had some good songs, like that joint “Pass It Off” with the GP-Wu dudes and “Swing It To The Area”, but the songs like “Jive Talk” were straight trash.

I forgot to mention that there was a rumour that they beat-down Wild Pitch boss Stu Fine in his office when their second LP flopped, so they at least they weren’t a bunch of pussies.

Comment by Robbie 07.26.06 @

“Not to say that Ra didn’t do his thing in the clip, but his descriptions of astral travelling didn’t exactly make me think of a mob flick when I first heard it”

Ha, that’s true. I actually saw a clip of the video before I heard the whole song, so I was rather suprised about what the song was actually about. The Paid In Full video, on the other hand, was just WHOA.

Comment by Kafka 07.26.06 @

That fuschnickens video is great.
That UMC’s video isn’t really any more corny than an early de la clip either imo.

Comment by Headlock 07.26.06 @

Fam kim is a Rap God family. Yall need to hear the Bobbito Stretch freestyle they did around the time the second album came out. At the time he woulda roasted 25% of the industry. Why you think Martin had the album on his wall?

Comment by rakimfan 07.27.06 @

95% fam, pardon

Comment by rakimfan 07.27.06 @

UMCs first album was produced by RNS, who was down with the Wu, and they mentioned “Prince Rakim” in the liner notes. So they did have a Wu connection before Wu dropped.

Comment by nesta 07.27.06 @

Remember that rumour when Dre Left Death row and started Aftermath that he had signed Fu-Schniks

Comment by Killer Keith 07.27.06 @

Yeah, the same with K-Solo. I think Chip-Fu is still around. He was on a song off the Ali Shaheed (Tribe Called Quest) album which I never heard.

Comment by Robbie 07.27.06 @

ali shaheed muhammed brought chip fu out to rap at the tribe show in stl last year and he did like three songs.

not a good look.

Comment by noixe 07.28.06 @

Blue Cheese isn’t gay. It’s dope. Played the album a few weeks back and delighted to find it had aged well – sounded really good front to back. Second album was a mess, except for ‘Ill Demonic Clique’.

Comment by Drewhuge 07.28.06 @

Definitely like both UMC’s singles. The Blue Cheese video is dope because it’s a kid’s show sendup. I’m liking the other video too – reminds me of a 1999-era Missy Elliott video.

What is gay s the album cover.

Comment by David 07.28.06 @

Ahhhhh,

So this is what tim dog was talking about “I get wrecked”.

Haha all those clips are funny as. (But not in the way they intended)

Comment by Dave Mack 07.29.06 @

I din’t always hve cable growing up so there are a lot of videos that I missed and there wer a few of them. If I had seen that Fu-Schnickens video I would hve never bought their tape. This shit is just offensive. I can’t believe dudes were in a giant chinese food box. I might not ever listen to that tape again.

UMCS were fresh but I never saw them rockin the FreshPrince of Bel Air look in that video. I might not have fucked with them. BET used to play “One To Grow On” pretty frequently.

Comment by Cinque 07.29.06 @

LMAO
yooooooo!..
lemme say first off that this IS Kool Kim of the UMC’s
from time to time I go online and just google my name to see what sort of shit pops up.. LOL

this shit right here is probably the absolute funniest shit yet.

First.. I aint mad at shit so don’t read me wrong..

but.. I’m not gay.. in fact i am quite the contrary.. lol..

on some real talk tho.. a lot of these muggs that the author is probably dickriding on his spare time are some real pussies..
these cats get a deal and sell their souls at the first opp. NO integrity.. NONE..
Muffuggas come from good families with supportive structures and get on stage and front like they killing other folks.. shaming thier race.. thier communities.. just straight bullshitting..

We on the other hand had the unmitigated gaul to actually smile and have a good time..

now i don’t know what the fuck YALL would do.. but if u went from banging out beats on a lunch room table and perfoming at churches and fucking flea markets .. to being On BET and MTV.. and yall don’t smile.. to me.. u a fake brother.. cause if there is anything or ever a point in your life to have a GOOD FUCKING TIME.. it’s then

Big shouts to the brothers that are aware of my TRUE skill level.. I appreciate that.. i felt that was the one thing that WAS actually foul about our career.. in that people just got image and just said fuck listening to what we were dropping..
if u really listen to that album.. like we used to listen to albums.. Minus all the visuals (cause all the classic lyrical albums happened before videos became so popular) u might have a different opinion..

I often after the fact beefed about not being taken seriously.. I think the fact that Stu would try to really “Son” us.. and then cats like the dude who wrote this article.. (and again i really aint mad i know what it is son.. it aint personal.. like that at least).. that shit get to u after a time.. word once … years after me and hass is a wrap with music.. I pick up.. like the source or some shit.. and scrams is on there shitting on my group.. now my son go to school.. lol.. and read this shit.. this is YEARS later.. i am like.. yo.. what the fuck.. lol. u know.. sometime that shit is wack.. I could see if i actually made bread from the shit then i would say.. it was the price u pay.. but naah..
so i guess sometimes that shit bothers a brother.. but… again.. that’s just life yall..

anyway.. I just wanted to bugg out with yall for a moment.. and on the real.. regardless of context.. i am very thankful that brothers remembered us AT ALL.. and that’s my word.

ya bitch ass niggruhas.. LOL

Kool Kim
the UMC’s
and THAT’s ONE TO GROW ON!

Comment by Kool Kim 07.30.06 @

Oh by the way..

that blue cheese video

is MAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAD
GAY.. LOL

I hate that shit.. beside the fact that It is me and i am in it.. lol that shit was supposed to be so much iller.. but of course.. sigh.. the stories i could tell….

like when I was ON STAGE when KRS ONE Beat PM Dawn off the stage.. LOL.. that was some trippy shit

Comment by Kool Kim 07.30.06 @

Hey Kool Kim

Please tell us those stories!

peace.

Comment by Dave Mack 07.31.06 @

Uh oh – ethered again!

I just got off the phone with Kim after an in-depth interview. Good thing he’s got a sense of humor.

Look for the highlights to be posted later this week.

Comment by Robbie 07.31.06 @

i must be one of the few that didn`t have a problem with the second lp- i like it.

one to grow on IS the jam and plenty of people will go crazy when that gets dropped.

give kim a monthly column Robbie – he could comment on sh1t going on now and also intersperse it with some old knowledge..??

hey Kim i got records i`d like signed!!

Comment by beatlover 07.31.06 @

These videos were kinda gay, but the music was good. Circa 1990 – was a happy time for rap music, if not for life in the NYC metro area in general. Stop the retro-hating.

Comment by R.H.S. 08.01.06 @

beatlover.. Holla..

and check out the myspace page.. we got the Tees up there too.

Comment by Kool Kim 08.05.06 @

Yo this is some weird shit. My brother and I were talking about UMC’s the other day and how dope we thought “Fruits of Nature” was, fuck that, is!! That’s my word. Many people don’t listen to shit. Not that it makes a diff, but as many people that jock damn near anything Wu affiliated, forget, at least to my knowledge, UMC’s were the first to rep Wu-Tang on wax, peep the lyrics to “Hey,Here we Go” Correct me if I’m correct KIM. I distinctly remember hearing the Wu Tang or a variation or two thereof(Tang-Wu etc.)shit “Nevernever Land” is one of the best beats in hip hop history as far as I am concerned, Jivetalk, Anyway the wind blows, Swing it to the area, shit, that album is dope as fuck, Kraftwerks is a masterpiece, Lyrics sompbody want lyrics?, Kids hadem. I often wonder why people hated on that album, Sad to say though, I was not, NOT feeling Unleashed, which I bought of the strength of “Fruits of Nature” I was let down by the order of the day image and style, even though they had a couple of joints on there. People were also on Hass’ dick for “Magic Stick” as well so it didn’t stop after Unleashed. Good blog though funny and entertaining as hell…I digress

Dee El Sends
P.E.A.C.E.

Comment by Dee El 08.06.06 @

I remember the UMC’s and although I can’t defend the Blue Cheese video as mad corny, these dude knew how it put it down when it came to beats, flow and rhymes. Every singel they dropped was bananas….I”m only talking about the first album. The A-Side and The B-Side of the singles were banging. Especially that remix they did to Swing It To The Area. You can front all you want on the image, but when it came to straight, beats and rhymes, these dude where in their own world…and really doing it..True Hip Hop Style….The first joint is a CLASSIC…so if they said the second joint relly repped them….then they should have listened to the record label…and kept it intelligent and happy instead of ignorant and hard.

Comment by AJ Sparx 03.25.07 @

Yeh I can’t front on them. they had the bangers when I was in college. I saw them perform at our homecoming my frshman year and their show was off the hook. One thing I always like about them though was that they came with the beats. I just uploaded they Fruits Of Nature LP to my Ipod and couldn’t believe how well it’s holding up to some of this shit today. I couldn’t wait for the second LP wich was a big letdown…they went from doing their own thing to being just like EVERYONE else at the time…(i.e. Das EFX, Naughty,) and all that hardcore gutter isshh. Didn’t even bother copping the second LP.

You couldn’t really know anything about music production now or then and say the first LP was anything but a classic…maybe a lil ahead of it’s time….but after listening to it recently, i gotta say…i had no need to fast forward or skip any of the tracks…some are better then others…but for the most part…this was one of the most solid LP dropped in that era…from start to finish… These guys run groups of the time like Black Sheep off the board when you count song of song…although Dres is one of the most incredible lyricists ever and they had that monster hit The choice is yours”, I skipped all throught that LP….which only had like 2-3 gems…Fruits of Nature haqd to have like 9 gems at least.

Comment by Macadoo 03.25.07 @

wow. Fruits better than A Wolf?I don’t know.I don’t know about that at all.

Comment by MERCILESZ 03.25.07 @



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