The Long Island native stopped by Audacy’s Hip-Hop Made podcast, where he told host Mike Street that the lyrics “Bumpin’ they people and out come the tools/ Ain’t been a fair fight since the creation of crews/ And that’s why them dudes hearts all pumped/ Done closed the club down/ ‘Cause one of they n-ggas got jumped” had more than a bit of a basis in reality.
“‘The Art of Getting Jumped,’ it’s a really true story,” Maseo said. “I got jumped by a Turkish gang out in Germany somewhere…. We had an off day at some club that normally everybody would go to on their off day. This happened to be our first time going to the spot; this is where Cypress Hill would go… where Ice-T would hang out when he’s on tour.
“A lot of us who toured internationally would kind of go to the spot. This is like the first time we were going and we happened to be there around the time where there was a lot of racial tension, you know, between obviously Blacks and whites, but then also the Blacks and the Turkish.”
“I happened to run into an issue where they thought I was from deep Africa,” Mace continued. “They thought I was from Cameroon or somewhere. I just was in the wrong place at the wrong time. I got jumped, I got snatched into the club… My eye is all swole up and everything.
“And sure enough, once we got outside of the main club into the corridor area where people are coming in and out… the security there, the owner, and all of them was like, ‘Yo, yo…’ And all of a sudden, this shit stopped, but I still wanted to fight… because I got my ass tore up and I really wanted to fight the person who actually set it off on me.”
He added: “I needed some get back, but I didn’t quite get it because soon as I got outside, he pulled a gun in my face and he pulled the trigger — and the gun didn’t go off. So I just ran. I ran like hell yeah. God spared me. I got spared that day. The victory was in running!”
Listen to the episode below:
Unfortunate run-ins with Turkish gangs aside, Maseo and the rest of De La Soul are currently enjoying a resurgence in popularity thanks to the recent long-awaited arrival of their catalog on streaming services.
Following long-standing sample clearance issues and a contractual battle with their former label, Tommy Boy, the group’s first six albums — including Three Feet High and Rising, Buhloone Mindstate and Stakes Is High — finally became available on Spotify, Apple Music and other digital platforms in March.
While the jubilant moment was dampened by the tragic death of David “Trugoy the Dove” Jolicoeur, De La are looking to keep their newfound momentum going with the arrival of a third installment in their AOI series.
Though the trio hasn’t announced an official drop date, Maseo did confirm its impending arrival on the Kyle Meredith With… podcast earlier this month.
The producer/DJ also confirmed that many of the vocals were recorded prior to Trugoy’s death, but that fans will still be able to enjoy new music as well.
“AOI 3 is definitely going to take precedent,” he said. “It’s going to be the very next thing. That’s a responsibility that we have to our fans — a responsibility we even have to ourselves — with completing that trilogy.
“We have a responsibility to continue on just to sustain [Trugoy’s] legacy and what we’ve built as three childhood friends, and we have a responsibility to Hip Hop.”