Once upon a time many years ago, three friends from Atlanta, Georgia decided to form a music production trio. Their goal wasn't to be the next big industry hitmakers, nor was it to gain local popularity—it was simply to play backup for a collective of several young rappers they had taken under their wings. The three young men were named Rico Wade, Ray Murray, and Patrick "Sleepy" Brown. They called themselves Organized Noize.
Starting out in the basement of Rico's mom's house—a.k.a. "The Dungeon"—Organized Noize cooked up sounds for their collective, which came to be known as The Dungeon Family. On any given night, future supergroups like OutKast and Goodie Mob would be down in the basement, making the music that would make them hip-hop legends.
Though no one knew it then, it's now become starkly obvious how groundbreaking Organized Noize's sound was. To say they were ahead of their time would be an understatement. Besides creating their own stars, Organized Noize has been credited with resuscitating En Vogue's career, giving Ludacris his most memorable party anthem, and handing TLC their biggest hit ever on a silver platter.
In this Complex exclusive, Dungeon Family founder Rico Wade, fellow Organized Noize producer Ray Murray, and associate producer Mr. DJ, tiptoe down memory lane to discuss the hits that put their crew on the map, and the juicy behind-the-scenes stories you've never heard before... until now.
Written by Linda Hobbs (@LinnyLovesLin)