Large Professor Tells All: The Stories Behind His Classic Records (Part 1)

Akinyele “The Bomb” (1993)

Album: Vagina Diner

Label: Interscope/Atlantic

Producer: Large Professor

Large Professor:“I was trying to chop up Rick James' ‘Mary Jane.’ But for some reason, I couldn’t get the phrase out of it, or I did get the phrase out of it, but for some reason, I was like, ‘Yo, we need to play this over, because it will bang more if we play it over.’ So my dude Anton hooked up the bass. And the ‘Mary Jane’ little guitar lick [is still lingering in the background]. That was dope how it came together, especially that horn sample, because that’s from an abstract jazz record, but it fit nice.

 

Ak, to this day, is a real lyrical guy. His freestyles average a hundred bars. You gotta kind of tell Ak to stop rhyming. He’ll kinda OD a little bit.

 

“Ak, to this day, is a real lyrical guy. His freestyles average a hundred bars. You gotta kind of tell Ak to stop rhyming. He’ll kinda OD a little bit. [Laughs.] Ak just always came with crazy rhymes and styles. And [that chorus] came from that same ‘Barbeque’ energy we had in the studio. We were always yelling on the mic, gettin’ busy, putting those ‘call and response’ hooks on the record.

“[The reason I produced that whole album] was because of Ak, and his loyalty. He was like, ‘Yo, you got me here, so I’m gonna gamble on you all day, like how you gambled on me. I don’t really rock with these other dudes.’ If you got a Ak on your team, you got a solid dude on your side.

“After a while, you see what’s going on [and why albums get slept on]. Like, ‘Oh, I see, this is a popularity contest. A marketing contest. This is not about skills, or the art.’ That’s what I felt after that.

“But The Source, which was the everything at that time, they came down hard on that album, because of the song ‘I Luh Huh.’ They wrote a specific editorial [about that song]. It wasn’t even a review. They were like, ‘We’re addressing this song.’

“The song was like, ‘My girl’s pregnant, she gotta get an abortion.’ And he was going through all the thoughts in his head, like, ‘Yo, I might push her down the stairs.’ [Laughs.] So, you know, it was us being young dudes, just expressing how we feel at the time. And The Source came down hard on it. That was huge. And Ak was one of the first dudes on the east coast that was signed to Interscope.

“Once that happened with The Source, a lot of the momentum was gone. Because we kind of came out poppin’ like, ‘Aiight, you got the video. Shit is playing all the time.’ Shit was good. And it was a female that wrote [the editorial at The Source], like, ‘Oh, you’re gonna take my black baby and do this?’ It was off from there.”

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