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On the surface, the sample-reliant productions and monotone rapping styles of Erick Sermon and Parrish Smith had little to recommend them, but the duo's recordings as EPMD were among the best in hip-hop's underground during the late '80s and early '90s. Over the course of four albums (from the 1988 classic Strictly Business to 1992's Business Never Personal), the group rarely varied from two themes: dissing sucker MCs and recounting sexual exploits. A closer look, however, revealed that the duo's rhymes were nothing less than incredible, simply undervalued due to their lack of intonation during delivery. EPMD also had a feel for a good groove, and created numerous hip-hop classics, including "It's My Thing," "You Gots to Chill," "Get the Bozack," "Strictly Business," and "Rampage." Though EPMD's hardcore style influenced the urban-oriented gangsta '90s, Erick Sermon (aka E Double E; b. Nov. 25, 1968) and Parrish Smith (aka Pee MD; b. May 13, 1968) were both raised in the Long Island suburb of Brentwood. They moved into rap separately, with Smith DJing for Rock Squad on a single for the Tommy Boy label. After coming together in 1987 -- at which time they named themselves EPMD, short for "Erick and Parrish Making Dollars" -- they recorded their debut, "It's My Thing," in three hours. The single was later licensed to Chrysalis, and EPMD signed to Sleeping Bag/Fresh Records for the debut album Strictly Business. Propelled by several strong singles (including "You Gots to Chill" and the title track), the album eventually went gold, as did 1989's follow-up, Unfinished Business. Signed to Def Jam by the beginning of the '90s, EPMD returned in 1990 with Business as Usual and Business Never Personal two years later. By 1992, they presided over an extended family dubbed the Hit Squad, including Redman, K-Solo, and Das EFX. The duo split later that year, however, prompting solo careers for each member; Sermon debuted in 1993 with No Pressure, and Smith made his statement on 1994's Shade Business. The duo then re-formed EPMD in 1997, recording a strong comeback LP named Back in Business. Out of Business followed in 1999, but the rappers continued pursuing their own projects through the late '90s and early 2000s. Both released solo albums, and Sermon partnered with Redman and Keith Murray as part of the Def Squad supergroup. Nevertheless, they also found time to continue performing together as EPMD, and 2008 saw them returning to the studio for We Mean Business. ~ John Bush
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Stations Featuring

    '80s Hip-Hop

    '80s Hip-Hop
    9 songs

    '80s Urban Music

    '80s Urban Music
    9 songs

    Underground Hip-Hop

    Underground Hip-Hop
    2 songs

    '90s Hip-Hop

    '90s Hip-Hop
    1 song

Albums by

Top Songs by

  1.   Song
  2.   Gold Digger
  3.   You Gots to Chill
  4.   So What Cha Sayin'
  5.   Strictly Business
  6.   Crossover
  7.   The Big Payback
  8.   Rampage
  9.   Get the Bozack
  10.   Jane II
  11.   Knick Knack Patty Wack
  12.   You're a Customer
  13.   Hardcore
  14.   Symphony 2000
  15.   Let the Funk Flow
  16.   It's My Thang
  17.   Jane
  18.   Head Banger
  19.   Please Listen to My Demo
  20.   Chill
  21.   You Gots 2 Chill '97
  22.   Who's Booty
  23.   I'm Housin'
  24.   Jane 5
  25.   It's My Thing
  26.   Da Joint
  27.   You Had Too Much to Drink
  28.   Put On
  29.   Nobody's Safe Chump
  30.   K.I.M.
  31.   Brothers on My Jock
  32.   Never Defeat 'Em
  33.   Get Off the Bandwagon
  34.   Never Seen Before
  35.   Who Killed Jane
  36.   Underground
  37.   The Truth
  38.   Strictly Snappin' Necks
  39.   Richter Scale
  40.   Play the Next Man
  41.   Manslaughter
  42.   Last Man Standing
  43.   It's Going Down
  44.   It Wasn't Me, It Was the Fame
  45.   Intro
  46.   I'm Mad
  47.   Funky Piano
  48.   For My People
  49.   Danger Zone
  50.   D.J. K La Boss
  51.   Do It Again
  52.   Get Wit This
  53.   Total Kaos
  54.   Apollo Interlude
  55.   Scratch Bring It Back (Part 2-Mic Doc)
  56.   U Can't
  57.   Serious
  58.   Yo
  59.   What You Talkin'
  60.   They Tell Me
  61.   Run It
  62.   Roc-Da-Spot
  63.   Puttin' Work In
  64.   Listen Up
  65.   Left 4 Dead
  66.   Blow
  67.   Bac Stabbers
  68.   Actin' Up
  69.   U Got Shot
  70.   The Steve Martin
  71.   The Funk
  72.   The Fan
  73.   Symphony
  74.   Skit
  75.   Right Now
  76.   Rap Is Outa Control
  77.   Pioneers
  78.   Mr. Bozack
  79.   Jane 6
  80.   Jane 3
  81.   Boon Dox
  82.   Can't Hear Nothing But the Music
  83.   Check 1, 2
  84.   Cummin' at Cha
  85.   Draw
  86.   Dungeon Master
  87.   Give the People
  88.   Hit Squad Heist
  89.   Hold Me Down
  90.   House Party
  91.   Intrigued
  92.   It's Time to Party

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