On this day, Nov. 24, in hip-hop history…
1998: On this day, Nov. 24, DJ Quik released his fourth studio album, Rhythm-al-ism, on Arista Records.
At this point in his career, the permed-out producer/rhyme slinger was at a bit of a crossroads. Then seven years removed from the release of his critically-acclaimed debut album, Quik Is the Name, which helped lay the groundwork for the G-Funk era, Quik was having label issues and looking to switch things up.
“With the Rhythm-al-ism album, even though it didn’t have a home because Profile Records was going through something and I was fighting them for back royalties and they had me on suspension because they didn’t want to pay me,” he said in an interview about the atmosphere surrounding the project. “I understood, those were some big checks, I wouldn’t want to pay DJ Quik either. I think that’s when I lost my rough edges, I lost the gangster and became like an R&B pretty boy. The name Rhythm-al-ism alone tells you what I was doing. I was mixing up rhythms. I was meshing R&B with hip-hop and jazz. And a little bit of comedy.”
What resulted was a solid project that was a bit different from the norm. The album contained the singles “Hand in Hand” featuring 2nd II None and El DeBarge, “You’z a Ganxta” and “Down, Down, Down” featuring Suga Free, Mausberg and AMG. The LP was certified gold by the RIAA in 1999.
In the 19 years since putting out Rhythm-al-ism, Quik has put out five more solo albums, with the most recent being 2014’s The Midnight Life. But that doesn’t mean the West Coast vet has been sitting idle. Earlier this year, he put out the joint project, Rosecrans, with fellow Compton native, Problem. He is also working on a joint project with Houston rap luminary Scarface.
See Photos of Rappers’ Fashion Choices in 1997