Sir Mix-A-Lot may forever be linked to 1992 mega-hit “Baby Got Back,” but you’d be off-base in labeling him a one-hit wonder. One of hip hop’s ultimate DIY practitioners, he was a platinum-selling artist long before “Baby Got Back” introduced suburbanites everywhere to the glories of the big, bad booty. He founded his own record label, produced his own tracks, created a Seattle hip-hop scene from scratch and was among the first hip-hop acts to collaborate in the rock genre. These days, he is working on a new album due out next year and generally surveying a scene hugely influenced by the music he created two decades ago. Sir Mix will be guest editing magnetmagazine.com all this week. Read our Q&A with him.
Sir Mix-A-Lot: Let me start by saying, ain’t no hatin’ in me, but when the country that gave us Aretha, James, Marvin, Jimmy, Janis, Otis, Motown, Stax, hip hop and rock ‘n’ roll starts sending a message that the best talent is the person who can best sing someone else’s song, something is fucked. Karaoke is fun to watch, but take a stroll through YouTube and type in “James Brown Sammy Davis” and watch James Brown run through a 10-minute medley of his own songs on a Sammy Davis special. Surely he would have lost on American Idol, but without a five-octave voice, dimples and a cute smile, James Brown left a mark on the game far beyond most of the perfect-singing, souless, pop icons out there.