I was listening to the radio which I really don’t do a lot of anymore, but Hit ‘em up came on and I am never not amused at that being one of Spanky’s favorite diss tracks ESPECIALLY since she was BARELY one when it was released which I guess says a lot about my parenting but also I’ve talked a lot about how I used to play catch with The Boy when he was a baby so is anybody really surprised to learn that Spank learned this song before she was in pre-K?  ANYWAY. I was listening and thinking to myself it’s Friday and there is no reason at all I can’t do a fact on music ‘cause some of the stereotypes are true you guys. I love music. And I’m not sorry at all for finding completely ridiculous but true stories to tell you about Black History. So let’s talk about black on black crime diss tracks!

DID YOU KNOW that one of the earliest examples of a diss track is a song to called “You Keep Her” by Joe Tex? Because y’all. R & B singers was WILIN’ OUT. This is what had happened: Joe Tex and James Brown were label mates at King Records. [I didn’t think I knew who Joe Tex was, but I do because my auntie used to always play this song called Ain’t Gonna Bump No More (With No Big Fat Woman) and can I just tell you that song ALWAYS makes me laugh. Even right now. I was 5 when that song came out. And I’m still 5.]

BACK TO MY STORY: Their beef started when  when Brown reportedly called out on Tex for a “battle” during a dance at a local juke joint. In 1960, Tex left King and recorded a few songs for Detroit-based Anna Records; one of the songs he recorded was the ballad “Baby, You’re Right”. A year later, Brown recorded the song and released it in 1961, changing the lyrics and the musical composition, earning Brown co-songwriting credits along with Tex. By then, Brown had “recruited” singer Bea Ford, who had been married to Tex but had divorced him in 1959. In 1960, Brown and Ford recorded the song, “You’ve Got the Power”. Not too long after, Tex got a personal letter from Brown telling him that he was through with Ford and if Tex wanted her back, he could have her. Tex responded by recording the diss record “You Keep Her” in 1962, where he basically told him “I taught her er’thang she knows; you’re welcome. Gon’ and keep her ‘cause I got me a new boo thang”

ALSO THOUGH. When you start taking people’s girl/boy friends you just gotta assume that they will continuously wish the bad things in life happen to you and nobody but you, right? SO. In 1963, James and Joe used to hang out at this after hours spot called Club 15. One night Joe did a performance making fun of Brown’s cape act. And James…was not amused. So one night James went in with two shotguns, and started shooting up the place while Otis Redding and the Pinetoppers were playing. James Brown ended up shooting 6 or 7 people before jumping into his tour bus and peeling out. A member of his entourage stayed behind and handed out $100 bills to keep everyone (including the people he shot) quiet. This story lives rent free in my head. And I wanted to share it with you. Because it too, it’s Black History.

And just like that I’ve knocked out an entire week of BHFOTD! Hope you enjoyed, blah blah blah, Stay tuned to find out what other ridiculousness I decide to share or if I decide to use my weekend to PLAN OUT A FACT instead of “no plans, just vibin’ my way through Black History Month” (hint: I already have plans for a beach walk, a bubble bath, and a nap. And that’s all)

See y’all next week! Don’t forget to tip your server (me. I am your server) BYEEEEE