Prince Paul Tells All: The Stories Behind His Classic Records (Part 1)

De La Soul “Millie Pulled a Pistol on Santa” (1991)

Album: De La Soul Is Dead

Label: Tommy Boy

Prince Paul: “We received a lot of praise for that song. That was a beat I made, which was personal. I’m a big Funkadelic fan. I loved the song, and played it for the guys, and they came back with the concept. The subject matter for me was just really intense.

“The first album was more innocent, pleasant, happy-go-lucky, the second album was a lot more cynical. I think the skill of music and creativity never left, but I just think the tone of the album was different.

 

This was after [De La] went on tour, and then you stop by the label, staffs are extra congenial like, ‘Hey, come on in!’ When they were never like that before. They basically saw the ugly parts of the industry.

 

“This was after [De La] went on tour, and then you stop by the label, staffs are extra congenial like, ‘Hey, come on in!’ When they were never like that before. They basically saw the ugly parts of the industry.

“I guess knowing how fickle people can be, and how they always like their artists on certain records to remain the same way, we knew they were going to diss De La Soul is Dead. De La Soul went into the pop zone. Not saying that we made pop records, but I guess that the pop community appreciated it. Or I should rather say the alternative community.

“Just knowing that, I knew it wasn’t going to make those fan bases as excited that the album’s gear slightly shifted. And I think it was Pos who said it as a joke, ‘We should just do an album called De La Soul is Dead,’ and I said, ‘Yo, do an album like that! Because it’s funny.’ And that’s how that album title came about.”

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