Compton's Most Wanted
Compton's Most Wanted was an American gangsta rap group and one of the pioneers of the West Coast Hip Hop scene. The leader of the group was MC Eiht. C.M.W. included rappers MC Eiht, Boom Bam, Tha Chill, Ant Capone, who was later replaced by designated scratcher DJ Mike T, and producer DJ Slip. The Unknown DJ was also a producer for the group though not officially a member.
Their first three albums It's a Compton Thang, Straight Checkn 'Em and Music to Driveby, were produced by DJ Slip and The Unknown DJ, who produced both Electro funk tracks as well as Ice-T's classic gangsta song "6 In the Morning", and King Tee's classic gangsta songs "Payback's A Mutha & If Ya Ever In Compton Ya Better Bring A Gun". MC Chill was an original member of C.M.W. at the time of their first album It's a Compton Thang, but was sentenced to imprisonment in 1991 before Straight Checkn 'Em was issued. He was released from prison in 1994. During his time in prison he missed C.M.W.'s two biggest albums "Straight Checkn 'Em" and "Music to Driveby". After three years behind bars, MC Chill did not have the chance to return to the group as they chose to highlight MC Eiht as a solo artist, due to the fact he (MC Eiht) wrote all of the lyrics on the first three Comptons Most Wanted albums up following Music to Driveby. Instead, Tha Chill MC decided to tour with C.M.W. and work with MC Ren and MC Eiht for their solo albums. In 2000, the group reformed and released "Represent". They are known especially for their slow, often melancholic raps, using samples from 1970s soul and funk records such as "Joy" by Isaac Hayes and "Love T.K.O." by Teddy Pendergrass. MC Eiht is pursuing his solo career, while DJ Slip is mainly working for the new West Coast label IV Life Records. Additionally, C.M.W. are set for a reunion which will feature on DJ Slip's next album "The Minority Report".
Ant Capone was supposed to be a member of the group while they released It's a Compton Thang, but was later released from the group due to studio issues and the designated scratcher DJ Mike T had to step up to the djay plate and did not appear on their first album. In 2006, the group released a fifth studio album, called Music to Gang Bang, which was released independently.
In 1989, C.M.W. released their first single "This Is Compton" and signed to Orpheus Records. In the following year, they released their first album, It's a Compton Thang which featured the single with the same title. It's a Compton Thang was entirely produced by DJ Slip and The Unknown DJ. The album peaked at #132 in the U.S. charts. A year later, the group released the follow-up album, Straight Checkn 'Em, which featured popular hits like "Growin' Up In tha Hood" which was the title sound track off the John Singleton block buster hit movie ""Boyz In The Hood"" and the first version of the "Def Wish" series. MC Chill was sentenced to prison some months before the album was released and he did not have the chance to participate, but he was on the sound track of "Boyz In The Hood". However, the album "Straight Check'n Em" was a bigger success than their previous album, peaking at #92.
Again in 1992, the group released their third and most successful studio album, Music to Driveby. It featured the single "Hood Took Me Under" which was produced by Mike T and charted at #5 in Hot Rap Singles and was featured on the popular videogame Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas (which features MC Eiht as a vital supporting character) at the West Coast radio station, Radio Los Santos. The album charted at #66 in the U.S. charts and is considered a classic by many people. It was the last album C.M.W. released until their long break.
Finally, after a break of eight years, the group released Represent in 2000. The album featured the single "This Is Compton 2000 & Some May Know" and had none of the success of their previous albums. After another long break, the group released Music to Gang Bang in 2006 which also did not sell well and contained four singles, most notably the single with same title as the album Music to Gang Bang.
In 2008, Compton rapper The Game revealed in an interview that he was in talks with MC Eiht to revive the group; however, this did not happen. In 2011, MC Eiht and Tha Chill linked back up to form parts of the supergroup 1st Generation, which also includes Jayo Felony, Kurupt, fellow Compton native King Tee, Sir Jinx, and Gangsta.