De La Soul’s legendary track “The Magic Number” has finally arrived on streaming platforms as they begin to hype the imminent arrival of their entire catalog.
“The Magic Number” originally dropped back in 1989, and served as one of the singles from De La Soul’s seminal debut 3 Feet High and Rising. The track arrives after the New York trio announced earlier this month that after years of legal battles, the group’s entire catalog would finally be available to stream.
De La Soul resolved their decades-long legal battle with Tommy Boy Records in 2021, with the group officially winning back the rights to all of their master recordings including 1989’s 3 Feet High & Rising, and 1991’s De La Soul Is Dead.
De La Soul’s catalog was acquired by Reservoir Media as part of its acquisition of the Tommy Boy Records catalog, with a statement from the former confirming they’ll be distributing the group’s first six albums on March 3.
“We can’t believe this day is finally here, and we are excited to be able to share our music with fans, old and new,” De La Soul said as part of the statement. “Golnar, Rell, Faith and the Reservoir team have been great partners in this entire process. We’re grateful that our relationship with them all has enabled this to happen.”
The group recently sat down for an interview with Ebro Darden on Apple Music to reflect back on their iconic catalog, more specifically their debut 3 Feet High & Rising.
“3 Feet High and Rising was inspired, maybe just the state that we were in as kids, just not afraid to say, ‘This is me.’ At the same time, it also gave birth to an era, a sound, a style in Hip Hop,” Trugory said.
Posdnuos added: “Dealing with how the media was labeling us, purposely putting us as the champion of gangsta rap or… None of that really mattered to us.”
“Gangsta rappers never called themselves gangsta rappers. It just got tagged on and they just ended up adopting it,” Maseo interjected. “But it was always called reality rap, and it was just their harsh reality.”
He continued: “We’re part of something that’s truly bigger than us, so now it’s even another thing of having a responsibility to continue on just for, one, three being three Black men who stuck together; two, being a part of a culture that wasn’t supposed to happen.”
De La Soul’s last album was 2016’s And The Anonymous Nobody…, which featured Talking Heads’ David Byrne, Little Dragon, 2 Chainz, Snoop Dogg, Gorillaz frontman Damon Albarn, Estelle, Usher and more. The album peaked at No. 12 on the Billboard 200 and was nominated for a Grammy Award in the Best Rap Album category at the 2017 ceremony.
But new music might soon be on the horizon, as Prince Paul recently reunited with the group in the studio for the first time in 30 years. The esteemed producer took to Instagram to commemorate the occasion.
“This might have been one of the most eventful years I’ve had in quite some time,” he wrote. “An unsuspected highlight was the opportunity to revisit and work on De La Soul once again. I really want to thank them for believing in me once more to get the job done.”
He concluded: “I want to thank everyone who was involved in helping us make this project a reality. Everybody who I called on to participate or get advice from.”