Often cited as the “Godfather of Gangster Rap,” the success of the Gary Gray directed Straight Outta Compton has introduced an entirely new generation to the man credited with launching N.W.A’s reality raps straight into the heart of mainstream America, as the group became the voice of the disenfranchised.
After exceeding all expectations with its record smashing debut, the film has also renewed an interest in the man behind Ruthless Records, the rap powerhouse of the early 90s that Eazy-E built. Speaking with friends, family and peers alike; his larger than life persona gets a more human perspective, as journalist Keith Murphy weaves together new anecdotes from those who knew him best for Vibe’s upcoming September edition which will feature Eazy on the cover.
On his father’s enduring legacy:
“There has been a blatant level of disrespect for my father in the music business. It’s a long time coming, but people are finally acknowledging who he was and what he did for this game.” -Lil Eazy E
Not writing his own rhymes didn’t diminish his appeal:
“His persona was, even though I’m not writing a lick of this shit…I’m the one.” –Irv Gotti
His thoughts on Chris Rocks’s hit CB4:
I showed him a picture of Chris as MC Gusto, who is basically wearing an Eazy-E outfit with the Jheri curl and Locs sunglasses. Eazy chuckled…he totally got it!” — Nelson George
He was a businessman with a vision:
“Years later we would sell out stadiums, sell millions of albums, and travel the fucking planet. There’s a person by the name of Eazy-E that saw that before we even figured that out.” — Will.i.am
His N.W.A. regrets:
“One day, E told us, ‘Man, if N.W.A. would have been as tight as y’all, nobody would have never came between us.” — Krayzie Bone
Make sure you check out the interview in full here.