Freddie Foxxx Biography
Last updated: 05/30/2011 12:00:00 PM
It’s the word in your dialect that you can’t define…
You can’t define Freddie Foxxx. It’s been 20 years since a teenaged Foxxx came home from school one day, started writing his first rap, and didn’t stop until 5 a.m. Since then, many people have tried to shoehorn Foxxx in this category or that one. Thug. Hardcore rapper. Magnum-toter. Cameo specialist. Beatdown-deliverer. Record executive menacer. Yes, Foxxx can be that—but only if you force him to.
The true man grows from his experiences. Elevates his mental state, eliminates weaknesses. The true artist finds new ways to connect with his audience, instead of letting formulas and fame dictate what he does with his music. That’s the essence of Tha Konecxion, the new album from Freddie Foxxx—a.k.a. Bumpy Knuckles—that solidifies his bonds with the organic power of hip-hop culture. Konecxion is a record that explains why Foxxx drops jewels every two years instead of every two months. Why experience is worth more than youth. Why an MC with an independent deal can make more money than a platinum rapper on a major label. Why the streets need to stop killing over rocks and blocks that they don’t control anyway.
Nothing is more dangerous than an idea
Especially if it’s the only one you have
As a youngster on Long Island, standing on stage after winning his first battle, Foxxx became convinced that his destiny was to be a solo MC. Perhaps that’s why fate led Foxxx to miss a 1986 meeting with a DJ named Eric B who was looking for a rapper. Another Long Island teenager named Rakim showed up instead, and they ended up recording “Eric B is President.” But Foxxx stayed cool with Eric B, who put Foxxx down with the Paid In Full Posse. Eric also let Foxxx use his studio time to produce and record his debut album, Freddie Foxxx Is Here.
This is where the Foxxx legend took root. Trying to promote his album, Foxxx was confronted with the type of lies and deceit that built the modern record industry. So Foxxx literally took matters into his own hands. After an unpaid debt led to one particular confrontation at MCA Records, Foxxx’s rep was sealed. Despite a slew of blazing guest appearances on records by the likes of KRS-One, Naughty By Nature, Kool G Rap, M.O.P. and GangStarr, plus writing hit songs for certain platinum female rappers, no record company would touch one of the most respected MCs in the game. So Foxxx sank deeper into the streets. Meanwhile, pushed by a hunger for the microphone, plus his budding spirituality, Foxxx began work on his breakthough project.
The only subject the king recognizes is the one who won’t bow down…
Piece by piece, Foxxx built his own basement studio. His hands installed every cable, every nail, every screw. Due to his own production and engineering skills—plus his bonds with such A-list beatmakers as DJ Premier, Pete Rock, Alchemist, and Diamond D—Foxxx became a self-contained musical entity. As he watched the rap game descend into a swamp of greed and shame, Foxxx’s anger and frustration grew. But he learned to reserve his options, largely from his growing friendship with the legendary soul singer Lloyd Price. Foxxx poured ten years of struggle and rage into the microphone. When Industry Shakedown dropped in 2000, it was an unprecedented commentary on the rap game. In an industry obsessed with politics, Foxxx named the names that no one else had the heart to utter.
At the end of my shows, when I take a bow
I’m reminded that it’s spiritual, so I take a vow…
Piece by piece, Foxxx has built the kind of life that might seem contradictory for a six-foot, 270-pound black man with a taste for classy diamonds and foreign automobiles. A life revolving around art, intellect, God, family, respect. The scars that the music industry carved into Foxxx will never fade. But to define Foxxx as forever fighting the industry would be a mistake. Shakedown was only the first in a planned trilogy of albums, and it proved its point: that Foxxx could not be tamed by the machine. Now comes Tha Konecxion to share more of Foxxx than he has ever revealed before.
“I hope this album makes rappers write a little more. I want to build a bridge to making people think about what they write,” Foxxx says. “All these rappers are living off their advances, that’s why they run out and drop two or three albums every year. They need to take the time to learn something! Develop your knowledge of business, your knowledge of the world around you. Develop morally, because someone with no morals is like a bone with no marrow.”
The development of Freddie Foxxx is far from complete. That’s why it’s impossible to define him for more than a moment in time. Part three of his trilogy will be American Black Man. By the time it drops, Foxxx will have done even more studying, more reading. He will have strengthened his connection to everything that is crucial to this world—and the next. “People say they rap from the heart, but the heart isn’t deeper than the soul,” Foxxx says. “You can touch your heart, but you can’t put a hand on no soul.”
Related artist Bumpy Knuckles
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