This past Saturday (May 23) marked the 20th anniversary of Three 6 Mafia’s debut album, Mystic Stylez. To celebrate the milestone, the group spoke with Nah Right to reflect on the making and impact of the project.
First off, DJ Paul spoke on the recording of the album, which took place on the north side of Memphis.
“We recorded [Mystic Stylez] in the middle of the fucking projects,” DJ Paul says. “It was a side of town we wasn’t from. Juicy [J] was from there and Koopsta [Knicca] was from there but nobody else in the group. We were from the south side but we [recorded] it on the north side. We would just jump in my car. I had a 1972 Pontiac Catalina convertible. Me, Koop, Crunchy [Black], [Gangsta] Boo, Lord [Infamous], all of us would jump in the car, drive over there, meet Juicy and we recorded man. We used to go everyday. Then we would walk down the street to the Whataburger and get something to eat and we just had a good time recording. It was an old R&B singer that recorded the album. He would always tell us stories about his group traveling the world and when groups get older they travel overseas and do tours. I was like, ‘Man, that’s cool. I want to do that one day.’”
Koopsta Knicca touched upon the influence of the group’s hometown of Memphis, Tennessee.
“[Memphis] influenced a lot,” he says. “It influenced everybody. We was weird to people, we were scary, we were different and even what we talked about, we was so good when we rapped about it [and] to be so young. It influenced a lot of folks. It’s in everything. It’s mostly like those rapping right now. They got our sound. A lot of people took Lord Infamous’ flow. And people even use stutter rap. I had something to do with the beginning of stutter rap but to be honest I got that part from Michael Jackson. I have that whiny style too. I don’t want to say that [artists] are stealing because I don’t mind. We did a lot for the rap scene now.”
Later in the conversation, Gangsta Boo spoke on her feelings when she was left off of the album cover for Mystic Stylez.
“I was mad as hell that I wasn’t on the cover because [I was like], ‘Man I thought I was in the group?’ At first the group started off as a collective, it was whoever was down with the posse, and then they separated everyone and just made it a group of six and I was, at the time, in the group of six, which was Paul, Juicy, Koopsta, Crunchy, Lord Infamous and me but they thought adding a female on the cover would be too girly or too stupid looking [laughs]. They were wrong obviously because I became a real strong, key member of the group and [was one of the] only members that put solo albums out outside of the group.”
To read the full interview, please visit Nah Right.