Death Row Records is one of the most successful music labels of all time From its inception in 1992, it exploded on the rap music scene with sales climbing to the 125 million mark in just four years Even noticeable than the label s financial success is the effect it had on American youth culture, making gangsta rap popular with suburban white youth and MTV viewers than traditional rock groups But under the guidance of six foot four inch, 300 pound CEO Marion Suge Knight, Death Row also became the most controversial record label in history a place where violence, gang feuds, threats, intimidation, and brushes with death were business as usual Have Gun Will Travel details the spectacular rise and violent fall of a music label that had at its heart a ferocious criminal enterprise cloaked behind corporate facades that gave it a guise of legitimacy With inside access no other writer can claim, Ronin Ro, the country s preeminent rap journalist, exposes the facts everyone else is afraid to divulge from the initial bankrolling of Death Row by a leader of L.A s notorious Bloods gang, to links with New York s Genovese crime family Have Gun Will Travel lays bare the full story behind this influential label, including the still unsolved murders of Tupac Shakur and the Notorious B.I.G., as well as Suge Knight s rise to power, his fights with East Coast rap titans such as Sean Puffy Combs, and his eventual imprisonment....
|Title||:||Have Gun Will Travel: Spectacular Rise and Violent Fall of Death Row Records|
|Publisher||:||Quartet Books October 1, 1998|
|Number of Pages||:||304 pages|
|File Size||:||683 KB|
|Status||:||Available For Download|
|Last checked||:||21 Minutes ago!|
Have Gun Will Travel: Spectacular Rise and Violent Fall of Death Row Records Reviews
Death Row Records may be history now, but it's certainly more than a footnote to those of us who lived through the 90's era when Death Row artists dominated the music charts and MTV (back when MTV still bothered to play a video once in a while...gee, I guess it was kind of long ago at that!) This is a fast-paced and interesting tale of how Suge Knight, a former football player turned bouncer and bodyguard, got into the record business and built a hit label from scratch. It also does a pretty good job of telling the history of 90's West Coast gangsta rap and throws in a little bit about the East Coast as well. If you're already very familiar with the scene, you might want something a little more in-depth, but if you weren't around when it was all going on or you're a more casual rap fan, this book is a good place to start getting familiar with the major players, as well as learning all about Suge's deeds and misdeeds.
This book leaves me with a lot of mixed feelings. There is a lot of interesting insight into Death Row that you probably don't know. It connects the different 'eras' if you will of Death Row, from the Chronic to All Eyez on Me and does a fine job of putting Death Row in its place in the rap game. It flows easily and is a very interesting read. However, it is not without flaws. First, Ronin Ro tends to repeat things. He'll tell the same anecdotes multiple times in the book, which really comes across as amateurish. Moreover, I think a lot of people are buying this to read more about 'Pac. I know that was a large part of my motivation. However, that is not a good reason to get this unless you're interested in the bigger picture. Ro paints a very unflattering picture of 2Pac (and just about everyone on Death Row in one form or another except Dre). And, if you want to hear the cricisms of the man, "Rebel For the Hell of it" is more direct on 'Pac. The strongest part of the book, however, is the looks into how Suge built his business which is really interesting. No one else would say all this about Suge, and I'm betting Ro will be moving to another country by the time Suge is set free. If you're a rap fan, get this book. If you're not, or you're more into just 2Pac, you might want to think a bit about it, although I think most anyone would enjoy this.
The mysteries of the Tupac assassination.
love the book . very well written
I owned this book previously and loved the insight it gave you about the gangsta rap world. I would read something about a certain rhyme then i would listen to the song and it was telling the same story. Example being; HIT EM UP by TUPAC.
Ronin Ro's "Have Gun Will Travel" is probably one of the most entertaining books ever written on the subject of Suge Knight's Death Row Records. However, a good deal of the information in this book should be taken with a grain of salt. Ro paints Knight as a thuggish bully who used violent tactics to extort his way into the music industry and helped create a feared "gang presence" behind the scenes at Death Row. It explores his partnership with Dr. Dre, a talented music producer who Knight pulled from rival Ruthless Records only to knock out of the picture when he was able to acquire an even-larger artist, Tupac Shakur. It goes into detail about the reported beatings of Dre production assistant, Sam Sneed and the infamous boat party where Warren G and his crew were assaulted. Ro tends to have a personal vendetta with some rappers, most noteably Tupac Shakur and DJ Quik. Shakur is written as a loud-mouthed, arrogant gangsta rapper who was falsely praised as a "revolutionary" because of his mother's fabricated past as a member of the Black Panthers. Quik is also written about in a less flattering way as Ro takes a biased look at his feud with MC Eiht, accussing him of hiding behind gang tactics and using violent threats while Eiht attempted to reconcile the problem. It fails to mention that Quik's diss record was a lyrical retaliation to a series of diss tracks called "Def Wish" where Eiht verbally punked Quik or that following the death of Biggie, Quik began recording positive anti-gang records including "You'z A Gangsta" where he made a call to end his problems with Eiht. Still, the star of the show, Suge Knight, takes the brunt of the beating in an editorial assault that makes Michael Moore's portrait of George W. Bush in "Farenheit 9/11" look kind in comparison. When he's not being accussed of assaulting record executives, promoting violence within the recording industry, or setting up rappers to be murdered, Knight's sexuality is also questioned as Ro explores a "supposed" homosexual relationship between Suge and his label's R&B crooner, Danny Boy, who is also his adopted son. If you were even a slight fan of West Coast rap music in the 90's, "Have Gun Will Travel" is one hell of an entertaining read, though most of its information is more "National Enquirer" than LA Times.