Cypress Hill is an American hip hop group from South Gate, California. Originally called DVX, the name was changed after Mellow Man Ace left in 1988. Cypress Hill was the first Latino group to have platinum and multi-platinum albums and over the course of its history has sold more than 18 million albums worldwide, including more than 11 million records in the U.S. alone.
Cypress Hill's first album, called simply Cypress Hill, was released in August 1991. The lead single was "Phuncky Feel One," but it was the B-side "How I Could Just Kill A Man" which attracted more attention, receiving heavy airplay on urban and college radio. The other two singles released from the album were "Hand On The Pump" and "Latin Lingo", the latter of which combined English and Spanish lyrics. The success of these singles led to the album selling two million copies in the US alone. DJ Muggs, Cypress Hill's producer, subsequently produced House of Pain's first album, then worked on other Soul Assassins projects like Funkdoobiest. The band made their first appearance at Lollapalooza on the side stage in 1992.
Black Sunday, the group's second album, debuted at number one on the Billboard 200 in 1993, recording the highest Soundscan for a rap group up until that time. Also, with their debut still in the charts, they became the first rap group to have 2 albums in the top 10 of the Billboard 200 at the same time. With "Insane in the Brain" becoming a crossover hit, the album went triple platinum in the U.S. and sold about 3.25 million copies.
Cypress Hill was banned from Saturday Night Live after Muggs smoked a joint on-air and the band trashed their instruments while playing their second single "I Ain't Goin' Out Like That". The band headlined the "Soul Assassins" tour with House of Pain and Funkdoobiest as support, then performed on a college tour with Rage Against the Machine and Seven Year Bitch. In 1993, Cypress Hill also had two tracks on the Judgment Night soundtrack, teamed up with Pearl Jam and Sonic Youth.
The band played at the 1994 Woodstock Festival, introducing their new member Eric Bobo, formerly a percussionist with the Beastie Boys. Rolling Stone magazine named the band as the best rap group in their music awards voted by critics and readers. Cypress Hill played at Lollapalooza for two successive years, topping the bill in 1995. They also appeared on the The Simpsons episode "Homerpalooza". Prior to Bobo joining the crew, Panchito "Ponch" Gomez sat in as a percussionist when not acting.
Their third album Cypress Hill III: Temples of Boom was released in 1995, selling 1.5 million copies and reaching number 3 on the Billboard 200 on the strength of the hit single "Throw Your Set in the Air". Cypress Hill also contributed a track "I Wanna Get High" to the High Times sponsored Hempilation album to support NORML.
Sen Dog took a break from the band to form a Los Angeles based rap rock band SX-10. Meanwhile in 1996, Cypress Hill appeared on the first 'Smokin' Grooves' tour, featuring Ziggy Marley, The Fugees, Busta Rhymes and A Tribe Called Quest. The band also released a nine track EP Unreleased and Revamped with rare mixes. In 1997, band members focused on their solo careers. Muggs released Muggs Presents ... the Soul Assassins featuring contributions from Wu-Tang Clan members, Dr. Dre, KRS-One, Wyclef Jean and Mobb Deep. B-Real appeared with Busta Rhymes, Coolio, LL Cool J and Method Man on "Hit Em High" from the multi-platinum Space Jam Soundtrack. He also appeared with RBX, Nas and KRS-One on "East Coast Killer, West Coast Killer" on Dr. Dre's Dr. Dre Presents the Aftermath album, and contributed to an album entitled "The Psycho Realm" with the band of the same name. Though the focus that year was not on Cypress Hill, the band played Smokin' Grooves with George Clinton and Erykah Badu.
Cypress Hill released IV in 1998 which went gold in the U.S., even though the reviews were somewhat negative, on the backs of hit singles "Tequila Sunrise" and another tribute to smoking cannabis "Dr. Greenthumb." Sen Dog also released the Get Wood sampler as part of SX-10 on the label Flip. In 1999, Cypress Hill helped with the PC crime/very mature video game Kingpin: Life of Crime. Three of their songs from the 1998 IV album were in the game ( "16 Men Till There's No Men Left", "Checkmate" and "Lightning Strikes"). B-Real also did some of the voices of the people in the game. Also in 1999, the band released a greatest-hits album in Spanish, Los grandes éxitos en español. Cypress Hill then fused genres with their two-disc release, Skull & Bones, in 2000. The first disc, "Skull" was composed of rap tracks while "Bones" explored further the group's forays into rock. The album reached the Top 5 on the Billboard 200 and number 3 in Canada. The first single was "Rock Superstar" for rock radio and "Rap Superstar" for urban radio. The band also released Live at the Fillmore, a concert disc recorded at the Fillmore (in San Francisco) in 2000. Cypress Hill continued their experimentation with rock on the Stoned Raiders album in 2001. However, its sales were a disappointment, as the disc did not even reach the top 50 of the U.S. album charts. In 2001, the group appeared in the film How High.
Cypress Hill recorded "Just Another Victim" for the World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE) as a theme song for Tazz. At the time, WWE was using original music for almost all of the wrestlers, so this was an unusual step for the company to take, but it remains one of the more memorable songs to emerge from the wrestling organization. The band released Till Death Do Us Part on March 23, 2004. The album saw the band experiment with reggae especially on the lead single "What's Your Number". The track features Tim Armstrong of Rancid on guitar and backup vocals. It is based on the classic song "The Guns of Brixton" on The Clash's London Calling and has proven to be a success on the modern rock charts. However, the album represented a further departure from the signature sound of their first four albums. The album also features appearances by Damian Marley, son of Bob Marley, Prodigy and Twin of Mobb Deep and producer the Alchemist.
In 2004, the song How I Could Just Kill A Man was included in the popular videogame Grand Theft Auto San Andreas created by Rockstar Games, playing on West Coast hip hop radio station Radio Los Santos. In December 2005 a best of compilation album titled Greatest Hits From the Bong was released including 9 hits from previous albums and 2 new tracks. The group's next album was tentatively scheduled for an early 2007 release. In the summer of 2006, B-Real appeared on Snoop Dogg's single "Vato". Pharrell Williams produced the track, and originally sang the hook, but because of the video idea, B-Real was asked to sing the hook. Sen Dog is now currently touring with the Kottonmouth Kings, Kingspade and Dogboy on the Joint is on Fire Tour
In 2007 Cypress Hill toured with their full line up as a part of the Rock the Bells tour, held by Guerilla Union, and headlined with Public Enemy, Wu-Tang Clan, Nas, and a reunited Rage Against the Machine. Other acts included Immortal Technique, Mos Def, Talib Kweli, The Roots, EPMD, Pharoahe Monch, Jedi Mind Tricks, Erykah Badu, MF Doom, Sage Francis, Brother Ali, The Coup, Blue Print, Lucky I Am, Living Legends, Felt, Cage, Mr. Lif, Grouch & Eligh, and Hangar 18.
311 and other ska musicians became popular during the '90s with fun rock-reggae infused tracks, and created a unique So-Cal music scene.
The band originally formed in Omaha, Nebraska when all original members met in high school. 311 released their debut EP, Unity, in 1990 and booked concert dates at local Omaha-area clubs. By 1992, the band moved to Los Angeles and were quickly signed to Capricorn Records. They released their debut album, "Music", in 1993 and scored a minor hit with "Do You Right". 311 concert dates were independently financed, and the band drove to venues in an old borrowed RV with borrowed equipment.
311 had better luck with their sophomore set, "Grassroots", which peaked at #8 on Billboard's Heatseekers albums chart and developed a loyal college following. They hit massive commercial success on their third try; Their self-titled album was released in 1995 and was eventually certified three times platinum. It featured the hit singles, "Down" and "All Mixed Up," and widened the band's fan base. 311 tour dates were booked in support of the album and they made an appearance on David Letterman.
They followed up with, "Transistor", which debuted at #4 on the Billboard 200 and was certified platinum. They toured extensively and filmed a live DVD at their New Orleans stop in 1998 and released one more album in the '90s, "Soundsytem", which featured the hit "Come Original".
In 2000, the band dubbed every March 11, as 311 day and every other year they gather in new Orleans to celebrate with a massive concert and play extended sets. This tradition has continued and in 2010 they moved the event to Las Vegas and played a 60 song set at Mandalay Bay. They released their sixth album, "From Chaos", in 2001 and it featured the hit reggae-infused single, "Amber". Two more albums followed, including "Evolver" and Don't Tread on Me", in the 2000s. They also scored their biggest commercial single with a cover of the Cure's "Love Song", which hit #1 on the Modern Rock Tracks chart and entered the Hot 100, marking their first entry on that survey.
311 tour dates have been particularly popular lately as their fan base has remained solid throughout the years. In 2006, they embarked on their Summer Unity Tour, which played to a record audience of 18,500 diehard fans at their Atlanta stop. Following the highly successful 37-date tour, the band announced a hiatus. They returned in 2009, and the 311 concert schedule included a revived Summer Unity Tour as well as an opening stint on the Offspring Tour.
311 released their most recent album, "Uplifter," in 2009, and are currently finishing up their forthcoming tenth album. Use Eventful as your source for 311 tour dates, concert schedule, and venue information.
G. Love and Special Sauce:
During the early 90s, a Philadelphia band called G. Love & Special Sauce combined east coast blues and R&B with the laid back attitude of the west coast, adding just little bit of hip hop, to create a totally unique sound. The sound brought them critical acclaim as well as tour dates full of supportive and appreciative fans. G. Love and Special Sauce's 1999 album, Philadelphonic, brought them into the mainstream and the band has been working diligently to keep their fans happy ever since. Part of that includes the abundant 2011 tour dates around the world that the band has in store for this summer and fall.
Guitarist, harmonicist, and lead singer Garrett Dutton (aka G. Love) and drummer Jeffrey Clemens formed G. Love and Special Sauce in 1993. The next year, they released their eponymous debut album, which featured the hit single "Cold Beverage." The album's success led to nearly a year of performing tour dates that showcased G. Love and Special Sauce's lazy musical style. The group's next hit came in 1999 with the release of Philadelphonic, which reached #1 on the Heatseekers chart and featured special guest Jack Johnson. By the release of 2008's Superhero Brother, G. Love and Special Sauce were incorporating musical styles beyond just blues and R&B, including soul and classic rock.
G. Love and Special Sauce's 2011 album, Fixin' To Die, was produced by The Avett Brothers has combined the band's signature blues sound with a winning folk style. This new musical direction can be heard on the group's 2011 tour dates, including stops in Japan, the US, UK, Western Europe, and a Rombello Cruise to Cozumel, Mexico. For all the details on G. Love and Special Sauce's tour dates in 2011, use Eventful.
Sublime With Rome:
Rome (vocals, guitar): Eric Wilson (bass); Josh Freese (drums)
The wait is over! Sublime With Rome returns long at last with 'Sirens' (July 17, 2015, BMG Chrysalis), the effervescent follow up to the band's 2011 debut, 'Yours Truly.'
"We had more time, we know each other better now, and we're even better musicians," said Rome Ramirez, who was just 20-years-old when he embarked on this journey. Now 27, the singer, guitarist, and songwriter is truly flourishing.
With drummer Josh Freese (A Perfect Circle, Nine Inch Nails) now permanently installed behind the kit and Sublime bassist and co-founder Eric Wilson anchoring the group, Sublime With Rome are armed with an album that makes a real statement... their statement.
Co-produced by Rome and Paul Leary, who manned the boards for 'Yours Truly,' 'Sirens' is an expression of three musicians who truly get each other and who can communicate seamlessly through their instruments and while in their favorite habitat -- the stage!
The luxury of time had a huge impact on their approach to this all-important sophomore set, especially since the band went into the studio without any demos or songs ready to go! That might sound terrifying to some musicians, but Sublime With Rome were invigorated by the situation.
"We didn't have any songs in our pockets," the frontman said, confessing that while he liked the spontaneity, it also lit a fire under their collective ass. "We showed up to this big studio and we had nothing, so we had to make it grassroots. It felt refreshing to make things on the fly. It really came together with all of us in the room and we loved the result."
He furthered, "Everything was recorded live and together. It's a little tighter and edgier than 'Yours Truly.' We have a lot of influence from Eric and it definitely shows."
Wilson concurred, saying, "It was great to work with Paul again, and with Josh Freese on drums, our chemistry was excellent. We had a great time recording the album in a totally organic way. There was no stress, even though we came up with stuff the fly."
"It is a whole different feeling now," Ramirez admitted. "Josh is such a great guy and he is just as lighthearted, which is great on the road, since touring can be so serious and so tough. It has been more fun, really. It is a lot more relaxed, and that helps with everything. It's like that everywhere. Studio. Stage. Bus. Wherever we are. We've moved forward, musically and on stage. He brings a great element.
And while Ramirez pays the utmost respect to the original Sublime entity, since, as he admitted in the past, they were the first band that made him want to make, as opposed to just listen to, music, he knows Sublime With Rome are worthy of fan's undivided attention. "This summer, I want fans to say, 'I went to see Sublime With Rome and the new album is sick as fuck.' We can do that by continuing to make better and better records," he said.
'Sirens' is overflowing with standout songs, such as the mellow yet buzzed out title track, featuring Dirty Heads. "This was a song where the drums and synths and beat that I did were for Mickey Avalon and I liked it so much that I decided to keep it and save it for Sublime With Rome," Ramirez said. "I had a random idea and asked Jared [Watson] to hop on the track, even though it's not what they do! They are gangster and they can handle anything."
Then there's "Skankin'," which is a Fishbone song that Sublime used to cover in their own unique way back when. It was an unrecorded fan favorite that sounds like an old demo! "We're covering Sublime covering Fishbone!," Ramirez exclaimed.
An instant summer classic, the slow-burning and chill jam "House Party," with a groove that transports listeners within the first few notes, or "Been Losing Sleep," with it's instantly memorable reggae groove.
Ramirez even stated that he isn't so much interested in the endgame or results as much as he is interested in writing music that is honest. And it's Wilson who summed up how Sirens is such an important record for the band. "I'm able play music for the love of music, just like I did back then. I am so fortunate to still be able to do it," he said.
With Sirens, those missions are dually accomplished. The album is seamless and has flow. It plays out like the work of musicians who complete one another's sonic sentences.
Indeed, Sublime With Rome are making their definitive statement with 'Sirens.'
Pennywise formed in 1988 in the south bay of Los Angeles in the same small coastal community of Hermosa Beach that produced three of the most infamous hardcore punk bands of all time, Black Flag, the Circle Jerks and the Descendents. The four band members, guitarist Fletcher Dragge, original bass player Jason Thirsk, drummer Byron McMackin and vocalist Jim Lindberg, began playing local backyard keg parties to increasing crowds, and with the help of friend Marc Theodore of Theologian Records, recorded a five song E.P. A Word from the Wise. A college radio DJ liked what he heard and gave it to Brett Gurewitz, guitarist and songwriter for L.A. punk legends Bad Religion, who was also starting his own label, Epitaph Records. Epitaph was already putting out Bad Religion albums as well as those of hardcore acts NOFX, Insted, and Down By Law. The band gave Brett a ghetto blaster recording of some new songs and he signed them to their first record deal. The result was their heralded, eponymous 1991 self-titled debut which immediately struck a chord with hardcore fans and action sports enthusiasts alike. In defiance of grunge, the disc helped to define the then-emerging West Coast punk movement. Astoundingly, 1993’s Unknown Road sold a few hundred thousand copies and rather typically at the height of the punk resurgence of 1994 the major labels came calling. But the four-piece elected to stay put and released another Epitaph smash with 1995s About Time. When the tragic death of Thirsk the next year put the future of the collective in serious doubt, they rallied and regrouped with new bassist Randy Bradbury for Full Circle. The popularity of Pennywise continued to swell as the 20th Century ended, first with the success of 1999’s Straight Ahead, followed by the riotous 2000 concert disc Live at the Key Club and the groups highly praised 2001 disc Land of the Free? An ensuing tour was highlighted by a sell-out gig at the 14,000-seat Long Beach Arena. After taking a year off for introspection, the group reemerged stronger than ever in 2003 as evidenced by the glowing accolades From The Ashes received. In early 2005, as Epitaph reissued remastered, content enhanced versions of the groups first four albums, the band reconvened to craft what would ultimately become The Fuse. After performing the more shows worldwide than they’ve played in recent years to support The Fuse, including a string of sold out House of Blues shows in L.A. and Orange County, the band again headlined the Vans Warped Tour in 2007, an entity they and a handful of other influential artists help turn into the longest running and one of the most successful American Music Festivals. As of now the band is hard at work on their yet to be titled next album, scheduled for a march 2008 release.