An Essay on Suge Knight
April 1965, too custodian father and schoolteacher mother. (Segue is short for Sugar Bear, so Its pronounced as in the first syllable of ‘sugar’). He was born and grew up In Compton, Los Angles.
He attended Lyndon High School, Lyndon, CA, before he studied at the university of Nevada In Lass Vegas. As a youth, he was Involved with the Mob Pull Bloods street gang, and during his later years was frequently seen wearing their colors.However, he remained an excellent student and athlete, Knight went to college on a sports scholarship, and played football as a replacement player for the ‘Oakland Raiders’ during the ‘NFG strike of the early sass’s. He then retired from professional sports and entered the music industry as a celebrity bodyguard, working for Bobby Brown amongst others, after his limited success as a professional footballer. During this period of body guarding, according to him, he learned that “the key to artistic and financial freedom is owning your masters”. A physically huge man, standing 6 feet and 2 inches tall, and weighing in at around 320 lbs. Knight has been accused of acts f violence Including forcing business rivals to drink urine and having extensive ties to street gangs, specifically the Bloods.
Knight first ran afoul of the law In 1987, when he faced auto theft, concealed weapon, and attempted murder charges, but got off simply with probation. Two years later, he managed formed his own music- publishing company, and allegedly made his first big money in the business by coercing Vanilla Ice into signing over royalties from his smash album To the Extreme, owing to material that he supposedly sampled from one of Knight’s company creations.Rapper Vanilla Ice has accused Knight of dangling him out the window of a high-rise building several stories up. Vanilla Ice claims that he was forced to agree to grant him a majority of Ice’s own royalties from his signature hit “Ice Ice Baby’. Even though Segue Knight had business relations with him, Vanilla Ice later refuted the whole balcony story or has told a toned down version. Knight next formed an artist management company and signed prominent West Coast figures the D. O.
C. And DC Sulk.Through the former, he met several members of the seminal gangs rap group N. W. A. , most notably budding superpower Dry. Drew.
Jumping Into the royalty disputes between N. W. A. And their label, Ruthless, Knight negotiated a contract release for Drew that, according to N. W. A. ‘s Easy-E and manager Jerry Heeler, involved Knight and his henchmen threatening the two with pipes and baseball bats.
Whatever the methods actually were, Drew co-founded Death Row Records in 1991 with Knight, who famously vowed to make it “the Mouton of the ‘ass. For a time, Knight made good on his ambitions: He secured a distribution deal with Interstice, and Dress solo debut, The Chronic, became one of the biggest-selling and most influential rap albums of all time. It also made a star of Dress protog, Snoop Doggy Dog, whose debut album, Doggedly, was another smash hit. As Dress signature G- funk production style took over hip-hop, Death Row became a reliable brand name for gangs fans, and even Its lesser releases sold consistently well.However, Knight was soul In and out of trouble with the law. During the 1 992 sessions for The Chronic, he was arrested for assaulting two aspiring rappers who allegedly used a placed on several years’ probation. Meanwhile, Death Row had begun a public feud tit Miami rapper Luke (2 Live Crew’s Luther Campbell), and when Knight traveled to Miami for a hip-hop convention in 1993, he was allegedly seen openly carrying a gun, which caused people to assume he was after the Miami rapper.
The following year, he opened a nightclub in Lass Vegas called Club ‘662’, so named because the numbers spelled out “MOB” – his gang affiliation – on telephone keypads; he also pleaded no contest to firearms trafficking charges, and was sentenced yet again to probation. In 1995, he ran afoul of activist ‘C. Dolores Tucker’, whose criticism of Death Row’s limitation of the gangs lifestyle helped scuttle a lucrative deal with ‘Time Warner’. Additionally, Knight’s feud with East Coast impresario Sean “Puffy” Combs took a nasty turn when Knight insulted the Bad Boy label honcho on the air at an awards show.However, the year was partially redeemed when Knight offered to post a hefty bail for Outpace Shaker if the troubled rapper agreed to sign with Death Row, and make numerous albums on the label. Shaker agreed, setting the stage for sass’s blockbuster double album “All Eyes on Me”, which sold over xx platinum, and ad the smash hits “California Love” and “How Do U Want It. ” Outpace temporarily helped Death Row stay on top of a marketplace that was already shifting back toward the East Coast, which had devised its own distinct brand of hardcore rap.
However, the label suffered a major blow when Dry. Drew, frustrated with the company’s increasingly thuggish reputation, decided to leave and form his own label. A stream of Drew-disusing records followed, and Segue and OPAC were making media headlines everyday for their gangster antics and lifestyles, and rising fame due to those lifestyles. But things turned tragic later in 1996, when Outpace Shaker was murdered in a drive-by shooting, he was a passenger in a car driven by Knight, who claimed he was shot in the head during the drive-by shooting.But not only had Segue lost the most talented artist of Hip Hop music in Outpace Shaker, he had also took part, alongside Outpace, in the assault of Crisp gang member Orlando Anderson, in the Lass Vegas hotel where Knight and Shaker had been watching a boxing match prior to the murder. He was caught on camera, and this was a breach of his parole, which resulted in Knight returning to prison. Moreover, it was revealed that Knight’s light sentence may have involved a conflict of interest on the part of prosecutor Lawrence Long, who rented out a Malibu home to Knight and even had his teenage daughter sign a recording contract with Death Row.
Knight was sentenced to nine years in prison, which effectively spelled the end of his Death Row empire. When Shaker’s East Coast rival, the Notorious B. I. G. , was murdered in a similar fashion to Outpace in early 1997, speculation immediately arose that Knight was somehow involved, and that the killing was revenge. To date, both murders remain unsolved, but the investigations exposed a web of connections between Death Row Records, gang members who worked there, and LAPS officers who sometimes worked security for the label and its artists during their off hours.During his time in prison, Knight’s home was burglarized, and police seized a vehicle at the Death Row offices thought to be the getaway vehicle in the Biggie Smalls murder.
Moreover, Knight’s story in the aftermath of Shaker’s death was questionable: Medical reports contradicted Knight’s claim that a bullet from the attack had lodged in his skull, and he also said in an the police. During serving his time, English conspiracies documentaries, Nick Brookfield, was successful in meeting with Knight in prison with aims of discussing his involvement with the murders of the two rappers.Having previously failed to get proper interview permissions from acting boss of Death Row Records, Reggae Wright CNR, Brookfield, in search of the elusive interview, goes ahead regardless and visits Segue Knight in Jail. Following a search of Recreation Yard C and Jailhouse 15, Knight is tracked down and agrees to give ‘a message to the kids’ rather than to speak about Tuba’s death. Segue was released in August 2001 after serving around five years, and immediately went back to work, retooling his label as ‘That ROW and searching for new talent.