On September 29th, 2009 Ghostface Killah will be releasing his eighth (8) solo offering entitled, Ghostdini: The Wizard of Poetry in Emerald City. Ghost promised that this album would be inspired by an R&B influence. Rumor has it, Ne-Yo, Joseci, Jon Legend and a host of R&B singers are featured on the album. The first single is an auto-tone love song entitled, Baby – feat. Raheem DeVaughn. As of now, it’s been suggested that this will be a laid-back album.
Ghost was a central playa in the success of Wu-Tang Clan’s debut album, Enter The Wu-Tang Clan (36 Chambers).
Many Hip Hop fans think they are knowledgeable about this highly influential Emcee. But do they know that before Wu-Tang, Ghostface Killah grew up without his father since age six (6) while living in Staten Island’s infamous Stapleton Housing Projects in New York? Do they really know that more than often it is unavoidably necessary to fish out the lollipop raps in their iPods for something really urban, from an Emcee who has genuinely influenced Hip Hop?
On the streets, he goes by Ghost Dini aka Sparky Love aka P. Tone or Pretty Tony aka Ironman aka Tony Starks or Ghost for short. Ghostface Killah is derived from the kung fu movie, Mystery of Chessboxing. Ghost was a central playa in the success of Wu-Tang Clan’s debut album, Enter The Wu-Tang Clan (36 Chambers). Pretty Toney set off on a solo career. His debut album is a Hip Hop classic on all accounts, Ironman. This 1996 album set the streets on fire. Even the most bias critics praised it for the knowledge that was encapsulated within it.
Do they really know that more than often it is unavoidably necessary to fish out the lollipop raps in their iPods.
It reached number two (2) on the billboard 200 at a time when Tupac’s All Eyes On Me and Makaveli, Biggie and The Fugees were sitting high on the charts. Singles like, All That I Got Is You – feat. Mary J Blige and Popa Wu (a spin-off of the Jackson 5’s, Maybe Tomorrow), soared on the charts. Another radio hit off the album was Daytona 500, in which He took turns with Raekwon, Cappadonna, and the Force MDs. The street was also buzzing with Black Jesus and Motherless Child when the album became more popular.
The album was also noted for a skit at the local New York rapper 50 Cent who at the time had released a song called, “How To Rob.”
For the next four (4) years fans had to be content with the Ironman LP since Ghost would not bless the mic until his sophomore album, Supreme Clientele was released. This album brought Tony Starks his first gold plaque and solidified his position as not only a dominant member of the Wu but also a legitimate solo artist. The album was also noted for a skit at the local New York rapper 50 Cent who at the time had released a song called, “How To Rob.” 50’s song offended a few big names because the lyrics were about robbing the heavyweights. 5o’s song was considered an insult. For that, Ghost and Raekwon took shoots at him on the album. The lead single was the classic club banger, Cherchez LaGhost feat. U-God. It was followed by the single, Apollo Kids feat. Raekwon.
A year later, Ghostface returned with his third (3) solo album, Bulletproof Wallets. This album was met with unluckiness from commencement since Ghost Dini would be held back because of his label’s (Epic Records) reluctance to pay clearance fees over samples used. This proved inconvenient for the Wu-Tang strong man so much to an extent the album’s final production was poles apart from what was initially intended. Ironically, its lead single was, Never be the same Again – feat. Carl Thomas and Raekwon which was what his career would be afterward. Ghost left Epic Records and signed with Def Jam. The second single to be released off Bulletproof Wallets was Ghost Showers -feat. Madame Majestic.
This proved inconvenient for the Wu-Tang strong man so much to an extent the album’s final production was poles apart from what was initially intended. Ironically…
On, “Tooken Back,” he featured Jacki-O
The fourth (4) album by Ghostface was also his Def Jam debut which was released three (3) years after Bulletproof Wallets. Among its notable features were his usual WU Tang members. He also reached deep for a gritty sound and a more urban format with less of a mainstream appeal playing songs like Metal Lungies feat. Styles P and Sheek Louch. The hit single was Tush – feat. Missy Eliot. On, “Tooken Back,” he featured Jacki-O but the second smash single and street banger would be, Run feat. Jadakiss. Run turned out to be what radio DJs and fans were waiting for because it received heavy rotation on the air plus the video was also heavily rotated The third single off the album was, Love featuring K Fox.
The Pretty Toney album and showed he could turn it up for the mainstream
In 2006 Ghostface released two (2) albums. The first one, his fifth (5) solo, was Fishscale. Ghost turned to a lot of soul samples for this album and won the hearts of critics all over the world. The album saw Ghost’s return to the billboard 200 as it debuted at number four (4) on the chart. He proved that he could do records for the streets like Bulletproof Wallets and The Pretty Toney album and showed he could turn it up for the mainstream also. It featured Wu-Tang artists Raekwon, Masta Killa, and Method Man. The album’s hit singles were, Back Like That – feat. Ne-Yo and the hit song, Be Easy feat. Trife Da God. The track entitled, Three Bricks, produced by Cool & Dre featured vocals by the late Notorious BIG.
Ghost released his sixth (6) LP, More Fish, that same year. By this time Sparky Love had assembled his own band of brothers dubbed, The Theodore Unit and he featured its members more frequently. More fish hit the billboard 200 chart at number 71 and impressed critics yet again. Rolling Stone, Vibe and Entertainment Weekly magazines each gave favorable reviews. Many saw this as Ghost’s attempt at a double LP. The album spun off the hit single, You Know I’m No Good – feat. Amy Winehouse and a remix of the hit single, Back Like That from the Fishscale album. The remix featured Kanye West and Ne-Yo. A track entitled, Blue Amour feat. Sheek Louch was also a street banger. Greedy Bitches was another street favorite off the album featuring Redman and Shawn Wigs.
The seventh offering from Ghost Dini would be his 2007, The Big Doe Rehab. Releasing it was a subtle move that he announced on his Myspace page shortly before it was launched showing that Ghost was back with another one. This album featured Wu-Tang members Raekwon, Method Man, U-God, Masta Killa, Cappadonna and members of Theodore Unit but there was no production from RZA who had always produced much of Ghost’s previous albums. This absence suggested that there may be a feud between Ghostface and RZA especially since Ghost expressed displeasure with RZA’s production on WU Tang Clan’s most recent album, 8 Diagrams. The album featured several street bangers including Toney Sigel A.K.A. the Barrel Brothers – feat. Beanie Sigel and Styles P, Yolanda’s House’ – feat. Raekwon and Method Man and We Celebrate – feat. Kid Capri.