Open Space: Big Boi

“Niggas still ain’t fuckin’ with Hollywood Court,” goes the first line of “Mic Jack,” the first single off Big Boi’s forthcoming album Boomiverse,  For all you newjack Outkast fans, that line is a reference to “SpottieOttieDopaliscious,” a dubbed-out jam off Kast’s 1998 album, 

“Two niggas don’ start bustin’ (wham! wham!)” Andre 3000 states spoken-word style.
“And one nigga don’ took his shirt off talkin’ ’bout / Now who else wanna fuck with Hollywood Court?”

In a very special episode of Open Space, the legendary ATL emcee Antwan André Patton aka Daddy Fat Sax aka Big Boi drops knowledge about this crucial—but now demolished—ATL housing project. “Hollywood Court is one of the hardest neighborhoods in Atlanta,” Big Boi explains. “It’s really nuttin’ to be fucked with. So when you say “Hollywood Court,” that was some real life. We went to TriCities High School where they merged like three different schools together… with the hardness all around. It just represented Atlanta to the fullest.”

As a Dungeon Family disciple and OutKast representer, Big Boi shed light on the origins of the hip hop collective that changed the geography of the culture when they stated—and proved—that “The South got somethin’ to say.”

Big says that when his partner Andre uttered those now-famous words at the 1995 Source Awards it was a completely spontaneous statement. “We didn’t know that it would become legendary,” Big Boi recalls. “It was an emotional moment. He was on the verge of tears. You could hear his voice shaking. Here we are, ‘Oh, we made it to the mecca of hip hop,’ and we wanted to be accepted from the South. It’s like you had the whole Bad Boy thing going on and you had Snoop and them from the West Coast in there. It was a real hostile environment. We was just two young boys. That might have been our first or second time even in New York. Everybody in Madison Square Garden—like 90 percent of the people—booed. It hurt. It was like a rap cvil war. From that point on we went straight into Jedi mode and started training. OK if that wasn’t good enough, wait till you get a load of next time.”

Big Boi also tells the story of Sean “Puffy” Combs directing the video for “Player’s Ball,” Outkast’s first release. “Young Diddy was a wild boy on the set,” Big Boi recalls. “He was good at putting’ the jumper cables on us.” He also recalls doing shows with Biggie and watching a young Future (then known as Meathead) start to make his way through the ranks of the Dungeon Family. “We were like Dungeon Family fist generation,” Big recalls. “The second generation guys were in the Dungeon while we were touring the world. So we would come back in periodically and we’d see these guys working on music. The Dungeon is like a school for gifted kids. We are the Rap X-Men. Everybody was dope and focused on their craft evolved into something else.”

Big Boi also recounts the making of his new single “Kill Bill” with Killer Mike and Jeezy and talks about the thrill of meeting Kate Bush, whose “Running Up That Hill” is one of his favorite songs of all time. Check out the video up top.

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