Slick Rick

Slick Rick, also known as MC Ricky D, is a British-American rapper and songwriter who is widely regarded as one of the greatest storytellers in hip-hop history. He was born Ricky Martin Lloyd Walters on January 14, 1965, in London, England. His family moved to the Bronx, New York when he was young, and he grew up in a tough neighborhood where he was exposed to the emerging hip-hop culture of the 1970s.

Slick Rick began his music career as a member of the hip-hop group The Kangol Crew, which included future rap superstar Dana Dane. He soon caught the attention of Doug E. Fresh, who invited him to join his Get Fresh Crew as a beatboxer and backup rapper. Slick Rick made his recording debut on Doug E. Fresh’s 1985 hit “The Show” and its popular B-side “La Di Da Di,” which featured Slick Rick’s distinctive storytelling style.

In 1988, Slick Rick released his debut album, “The Great Adventures of Slick Rick,” which included classic tracks such as “Children’s Story” and “Hey Young World.” The album was a critical and commercial success, and Slick Rick became known for his witty, humorous, and often dark lyrics, as well as his trademark eye patch, which he wore due to a childhood accident.

Slick Rick’s second album, “The Ruler’s Back,” was released in 1991 and featured the hit single “I Shouldn’t Have Done It,” which sampled the theme from the TV show “Jeopardy!” However, the album was overshadowed by Slick Rick’s legal troubles. In 1990, he was arrested and charged with attempted murder after he shot at his cousin and an innocent bystander during a confrontation in the Bronx. He pleaded guilty to lesser charges and was sentenced to three and a half years in prison.

While in prison, Slick Rick recorded his third album, “Behind Bars,” which was released in 1994. The album received mixed reviews and was not as commercially successful as his previous releases. After his release from prison in 1997, Slick Rick signed with Def Jam Records and released his fourth album, “The Art of Storytelling,” in 1999. The album featured collaborations with several high-profile artists, including Outkast, Nas, and Snoop Dogg.

Slick Rick has continued to perform and record music in the years since, but his career has been marked by legal and personal troubles. In 2002, he was arrested and detained by Immigration and Customs Enforcement for overstaying his visa, and he faced deportation back to England. He was eventually released on bail and granted a pardon by New York Governor David Paterson in 2008.

Despite his legal struggles, Slick Rick remains a beloved figure in hip-hop culture, and his influence can be heard in the work of countless artists who have followed in his footsteps. His storytelling abilities and unique style have earned him a place in the pantheon of hip-hop legends, and his music continues to inspire new generations of fans.

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