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The 100 Best L.A. Rap Songs

61. Hi-C "Leave My Curl Alone" (1992)

Album: Skanless
Label: Hollywood Records
Producer: Tony-A


The jheri curl was invented in Los Angeles in the late 1970s by a white hairdresser named Jheri Redding. It became the most popular black hairstyle on earth with the release of Michael Jackson's Thriller, which functioned as a worldwide advertisement for Redding's line of hair goops. The curl died in 1991, when Ice Cube shaved his off for Death Certificate and rapped about burning off Eazy's with gasoline in “No Vaseline.”

For true believers like Hi-C the last defense of the hairstyle that had become the ghetto equivalent of a mullet was to celebrate its nastiness. “Leave My Curl Alone” is easily the apex of shower cap rap. (Competition is slim.) In it the leaky perm becomes a way for Hi-C to mark his territory (“Grease on the do' / The bathroom flo'…).

Likewise, Hi-C argues that the curl may serve as a litmus test for potential sex partners. He confesses that he's “got a gang of hoochies but the Fendi girls don't want me.” If you learn anything from Hi-C you will learn that a single hoochie is worth 100 Fendi girls.

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