Erick Sermon Tells All: The Stories Behind His Classic Records (Part 1)

Keith Murray “Herb is Pumpin'” (1994)



Album: The Most Beautifullest Thing in This World
Label: Jive
Producer: Erick Sermon

Erick Sermon: “That first Murray album was phenomenal. We didn't have a manager or an agent, so we didn't get as big as a Death Row or other crews that had teams behind them. We didn't have people pushing us to become big. Our music spoke.

“But these albums, when you hear [the beat for 'Herb is Pumpin'] I'm like, 'What was I on?!?!?' I still be buggin', man. There was a sample in there, but I played the bass line myself. All my stuff is bass-line driven. That's what people know me for—grooves.

 

They were smoking [weed], and they were smoking some shit called bom-ba-zi, which is leak [or dust].

 

“I didn't smoke, or drink. That was all Reggie. They were smoking [weed], and they were smoking some shit called bom-ba-zi, which is leak [or dust].

“Murray had rhymes upon rhymes upon rhymes. That album was just shit that he had. I didn't need to smoke. I was high off hearing those rhymes. To hear those rhymes? Oh my God. They sounded so dope. It was like, 'Wait 'til somebody hears this shit.'

“The Keith Murray shit was hard though, because I was making his demos and playing them for people, and nobody was liking it. Like, Das was not [feeling it]. Parrish was like, 'Oh yeah, he's getting better.' And then Sticky Fingaz [from Onyx] was like, 'Yo, he's dope, but I can't hear him on a whole album. And then he came out, and it was proper. And it went Gold quick, too.

“We stopped around 700,000. I wish I knew what I knew now, on how to jump-start stuff, and do the extra marketing and promotion that you should be doing. Why stop? Do a remix or another video or something.”

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