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3rd Bass Biography

Home > Music > Other > 3rd Bass > Biography

Birth Place: Queens, New York City, New York, United States
Years Active: 1987 - 1992
Genres: Hip Hop

3rd Bass was an American hip-hop group that rose to fame in the late 1980s and early 1990s, and was notable for being one of the first successful interracial hip-hop groups. MC Serch (Michael Berrin), Prime Minister Pete Nice (Peter J. Nash), and DJ Richie Rich (Richard Lawson) were the three founding members of the group.

Sever, Prince Paul, and The Bomb Squad produced their 1989 debut, The Cactus Album, a critically-acclaimed LP that went gold and contained a minor hit in "The Gas Face." The Cactus Album was released shortly after the Beastie Boys—riding high on the success of Licensed to Ill—walked out of their contract with the label. In addition to containing multiple potshots directed at M.C. Hammer (referred to as "M.C. Household Tool" in the liner notes), Cactus also attacked the Beastie Boys and their defection to Capitol Records.

3rd Bass's 1991 follow-up, Derelicts of Dialect, had a new target in fellow white rapper Vanilla Ice, who was the focal point of several tracks on the album, most notably "Pop Goes the Weasel". 3rd Bass's final collaboration was the title track to the soundtrack of the 1992 film Gladiator before the group called it quits. That same year—three years after The Cactus Album—the Beastie Boys retaliated against 3rd Bass on their new release Check Your Head; the track "Professor Booty" contained the lyric "dancing around like you think you're Janet Jackson," which was interpreted as a swipe at Serch's dancing in 3rd Bass's videos.

3rd Bass reunited for a gig at the birthday party of Andy Hilfiger (brother of Tommy Hilfiger) in 1998. They also performed at Woodstock 1999, and released a non-charting single, "Hail to the Chief." There had also been talks of a new album entitled Ichabod’s Cranium, but any long-term reunion and album plans were ultimately scrapped.