(1958- )
Ice-T, The Arsenio Hall Show
Credit: Ice-T: Reed Saxon/AP

Why Dylan’s a fan of Ice-T

In Dylan’s Words ”Danny [Lanois] asked me who I’d been listening to recently, and I told him Ice-T. He was surprised, but he shouldn’t have been…. These [hip-hop] guys definitely weren’t standing around bulls—ting. They were beating drums, tearing it up, hurling horses over cliffs. They were all poets and knew what was going on.”

Let Us Explain Ice-T may be devoted to acting now (namely a leading role in Law & Order: Special Victims Unit), but his harsh, insightful rhymes about crime-ridden streets are still hard-hitting. Taking on much more than the typical hardcore hip-hop strains of sex, drugs, and violence, he is best known for the unflinching police brutality critique ”Cop Killer” — released in 1992 to the chagrin of censors everywhere. Makes Dylan’s transition from acoustic to electric seem harmless, doesn’t it?

Suggested Spin O.G.: Original Gangster (Sire, 1991), a seminal work of biting social commentary that reeks of venom and freshly spilled blood — contributing to the rise of gangsta rap and the reign of Dr. Dre.

On the Web
Official Site
Best Unofficial Site
Practice That Gangsta Pose Learn to sneer and stare like a weathered street poet with this photo gallery
Listen Up Not sure whether to buy The Pimp Penal Code or that O.G. classic? Sample songs here first