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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

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