The Fat Boys

Fat Boys

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Because of their comic image, some hip-hoppers dismissed the Fat Boys as a novelty act -- some, but not many. The fact is that they were among the best and most popular rappers of the mid-1980s. Along with Run-D.M.C., L.L. Cool J, and Whodini, the Fat Boys were the finest that hip-hop's "Second Generation" (as it was called) had to offer. After making some noise as the Disco Three, the rotund Brooklynites changed their name to the Fat Boys in 1984 and hit big with this excellent debut album, which is humorous, wildly entertaining, and unapologetically funky. Everything from "Fat Boys" to the amusing "Jailhouse Rap" proves that their rapping skills were first-rate. One of the group's strongest assets was Darren Robinson, aka the Human Beat Box, who was known for making percussive sounds with his voice. A celebration of his talent, "Human Beat Box" uses no actual instruments -- only Robinson emulating them. This album is a true hip-hop classic. [The 2012 reissue was packaged in a small pizza-box replica and added eight bonus tracks, including "Reality" (their first A-side, as Disco 3) and "All You Can Eat" (from the Krush Groove soundtrack).

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