Pete Rock Recalls Recording "They Reminisce Over You (T.R.O.Y.)”

The veteran producer reflects on how the classic tune came to be.

Producer Pete Rock recently broke down his catalogue for Complex.com, telling the story behind his classic single “They Reminisce Over You (T.R.O.Y.)” with CL Smooth. Reflecting on the song’s title and theme, Pete revealed that the song was about a neighborhood friend who died while on tour with Kid ‘n Play and Salt-N-Pepa.

“Troy was a close friend of the neighborhood that we grew up with since we were little. [...] They were playing around throwing empty garbage cans at each other on stage,” he recalled. “Troy was a playful person like that. He was at the edge of the stage and it was twenty feet high, and he slipped off the edge and fell [and died]. I don’t know how I made that beat while being depressed for such a long period of time.”

He happened upon the sample while crate digging with Large Professor. “I made the base of the beat at my house, and I finished the rest at his house using his SP-950. Q-Tip had nothing to do with [making the beat]. I think what happened was he liked the horn riff that he heard. I had already sampled it, but I filtered it to make the bass line. The horn was already there, but he just thought it was a good idea for me to put it in there. And I put in there. I made the beat, he just suggested I put that in there.”

Even before Pete crafted the beat, CL had already penned his verses. “CL came up with the lyrics even before I came up with the beat. He didn’t have the beat [to write to],” he said. “He already had the song written. The beat made me emotional so I figured it would work. When the lyrics came together with the music, that was the match made in heaven. Thank God it matched the way it did. It was a great outcome.” 

Check out stories on 39 other songs on Complex.com.

RELATED: Camp Lo & Pete Rock: Time Machine

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11 Comments

  • Micheal White

    Why is Q-tip being mentioned in an article about this track?For you real HipHop heads out their,Pete Rock claimed that Q-tip jacked one of his beats for the track-"We've Got The Jazz".BUT..LARGE PROFESSOR says it was [he],NOT PETE who picked out the "horn sample"for-T.R.O.Y...and I believe him,,PETE protest too much for Large to be lying.

  • Big Log

    Man that song and album is all that classic song and album right there nigga i still bang that album today nigga

  • The MG

    One of the best hip hop songs ever made.

  • Kevin

    Yo, I finally cleared all the shit from my credit reports, getting out of that gutter for the first time in 5 years. Got that loan for a brand new Mustang finally, If any of y'all got any sort of credit problems, call 877-667-4052. They do all the work for you, and got me clean in 3 months for 40 bucks. My homie's stuff was worse than mine, and they cleaned him up too, amazing shit! Ring them up!

  • Anonymous

    eh, I'm 30 years old livin out in cali and i never thought this song was all that

    • adamsinc71

      Lil Homie ur buggin...U were prob ten when the song came out in 91'....So you wouldn't appreciate the meaning of it!

  • Anonymous

    thats strange, cos in every other interview pete rock has done about this song he said it was about Trouble T Roy from the group Heavy D and the Boyz

  • TAYLORD

    PPL WOULDNT EVEN RESPECT SUCH ART IF THEY CAME BACK

    • LoLSec

      I know right.. unlike Gang Starr.. they STILL can settle their differences, but the real question is if they did come back, whether they still got something fresh to bring to the table.

  • datdudefromnyc

    one of the greatest hip hop songs OF ALL TIME. have to be at least a top 10 easy. i wish PR and CL would work on new stuff.

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