24 years after the release of De La Soul’s second album De La Soul Is Dead, the trio sat down with VladTV to break down the meaning behind the project’s title, as well as address the significance of the smashed flowerpot on the album’s cover.
During the conversation, Maseo admitted that the cover was designed to denounce the hippy connotation that the group was labeled with by the image of daisies illustrated on the group’s first album cover.
“It was definitely denouncing the image [of the first album], because the overall image of the group is about creativity and the music,” Maseo says. “And the message, I think, the message was misconstrued where it was, what we’ll say now reminding people of the hippy era, but it became something so manufactured that it started to seem like people started to think this is what we were. This is who we are. And, we weren’t that. Everything about us was more so about the music.
“It was also about taking control as well,” David Jolicoeur adds. “We had to take the control out of the media’s hand and out of the label’s hand, and I think crushing that flowerpot was like, ‘Okay, now what y’all got to work with? We’re in control now. So let’s basically start with a clean slate and now let us direct our forward motion.’ It was taking the power of out the hands of people who actually didn’t know how to use the power that we were creating.”
De La Soul’s interview with VladTV can be viewed below: