Erick Sermon and Parish Smith once formed one of the most influential rap groups ever, Long Island's own, EPMD. Their sample-driven songs and back-and-forth rhyming schemes blended together to make classic albums like Strictly Business and Unfinished Business.
But record label business—messy contracts, distribution, and management—led to the group's downfall...well, that coupled with the time that Parish Smith's house was robbed, and one of the burglars said that Erick Sermon paid them to commit the crime.
Tensions, not surprisingly, grew, and EPMD was no longer. Over the last 20 years, there have been reconciliations and break-ups, recordings and near-death experiences, but never success like the late 1980s brought.