BARS FOR AN EIGHT MONTH BID
The AWOL Records Story from Freddie 'T' Smith Awol
In 1988, I started with a dream. At the time, I was
in the penitentiary doing a three with a three year
sentence for selling crack cocaine as usual and having
two firearms. While I was in jail, I was thinking
about what I wanted to do when I got out of this jail.
I got out on April 28, 1991 and my brother and my
mother came to get me from Mill Creek State Penitentiary
the big one in California. Man, I was new to everything
, streets, people, slang, styles, music, etc. So now
(that) I was out, it was time to make my dreams come
true. I started going to Vallejo kicking it with my
first cousins E-40, B-Legit, D-Shot, Suga T, the whole
click family that just came out with down and dirty
were working on plans, going to all their shows with
them and learning usiness. They really wanted me to
get into music because I was gangbanging, shooting
at every enemy I saw because of the fakes that got
me in prison in the first place. The wild life that
I was leading was going to send me back there again.
D-Shot, E-40, and B-Legit told me that I had to stop
all that crazy stuff or I was going to be dead or
go to jail for the rest of my life. So then I wouldn't
have it, and I needed to get my mind straight from
all these snitches and police. I was living in Sacramento,
where I grew up, and my parole officer wanted to see
me behind one of the shootings. She the hoe as she
is had heard I was involved in it. I decided I was
not going back to nobody's jail and then I moved to
Vallejo. About four months passed and then I got a
call one day from Shawn Thomas, AKA C-Bo. He told
me that he had just got out of CIA(California Youth
authority) where he had done two and a half years.
When he came to Vallejo we hugged each other because
we hadn't seen each other in three and half years
and we started talking about everything I was doing
with E-40 and The Click. He just busted out with,
"Nigga, I'm tight...I mean tight!" I told
him to bust some shit and then he started flowing.
It was time to find a producer to do our beat. First,
I hit up Studio Ton and we started working together,
but he started bullshitting because he had too many
projects he was working on. He was fully booked, so
the only time he gave me was on Sundays. I started
looking around and then I found Mike Mosley. I told
Mike that I had a top-notch artist he had to hear.
He was like "Heck yeah, we can do this,"
so we started in Mike's house putting together the
first album called The Gas Chamber. Then we had to
come up with a record label name that fit us. I said
AWOL because at the time we both went "AWOL"
from parole. Then it was time to find somebody to
work on our project , as in promotions, sales and
marketing. I hooked up with my uncle S.M.G., Solar
Music Group where bo gives a shout out on Shout
Outs on Gas Chamber, where I learned a lot from
him. He is the one I really learned the ups and downs
from. The tape was completed and it was time to see
if I made on everything. Well, I sold 160,000 units
and it is still selling. I then met Marvaless and
we began working on her album Getto Blues. I started
learning the business and then I then out I was being
"got" by my uncle "SMG". They
were selling tapes and CD's on the under. I went up
there with a gun in my pocket where everybody could
see it and told them I would kill them all over my
business. I hadn't worked this hard to let anyone
take it away from me. I said just fuck it-you're my
family and I'm already on the run and I don't need
to be killing nobody. I just stopped fucking with
them. I had to think of a name for my distribution.
I came up with "On the Run." I went from
store to store selling tapes like it was a piece of
crack cocaine. I was hustling day by day, not really
selling a lot, but doing everything I could by myself.
I sold 20,000 units of by myself and then I realized
I really needed C.O.D. I then went back to my uncle
so I could sell more units because he was getting
C.O.D. from City Hall. We then sold 30,000 more, enough
for me to finish C-Bo's second tape called The Autopsy.
I did all the promotions, sales and marketing and
sold 90,000 units. Later on that year we came out
with the third tape on AWOL records, called "Just
Marvaless," which sold 60,000 units. I was very
upset because I was planning on it selling more. I
talked to C-Bo, and he looked at me and said he promised
to the dead homies this next tape would take us to
where we wanted to be. Well, he was right, we came
out with Tales From the Crypt that sold 290,000 units
and is still selling. We entered number Four on the
Billboard with "Shockin' the World." As
an independent label, nobody had done that since N.W.A.
back in the day. Six months passed by and C-Bo came
to me and said let's give the people a tape with all
my old songs and call it The Best Of C-Bo. It's preorder
was 160,000 units and is still on the Billboard as
you read this. Oh, I almost forgot, C-Bo's x-bitch
Snitch, told FBI where I stayed in the ATL, so they
came to get me. I gave them a high speed chase. Fuck
it, I was AWOL from the law for five years, it's time
for me to face this bullshit anyway. So there you
have it my story how awol came about.
Rappers on Awol Records:
C-Bo - First rapper signed to the label.
DJ Daryl - He is a major producer for awol
he did albums like Success, the Best Revenge, One
Life 2 Live, Till My Casket Drops, Best Appearances:
1991-1999, Nu Niggaz on Tha Blokkk, Clear & Present
Danger, Mr. Mafioso, Kingpins Only, High Performance,
and Different Reality.
Dosia - Yeah, yeah the crew is Lunasicc, Killa
Tay, and Laroo straight offa AWOL records. Lunasicc
sounds sicc than ever. This is straight killa
music with no remorse. It's only for the hardcore
bangers, not no studio gangstas. For those who didn't
know, Lunasicc from AWOL is part of Dosia.
Lunasicc is X-Raided's cousin. Lunasicc and the other
two in Dosia got real tight gangster flows especially
if your down with their set, but they ain't
have the beats as Lynch or C-Bo yet. Still pick up
Dosia if you down with this true color Sac-town music.
Killa Tay - Known for his collaborations with
C-BO, rapper Killa Tay made his solo debut in 1998
with Mr. Mafioso. Snake Eyes and Thug Thistle
followed two years later; another gang-oriented tale
was captured on 2001's Thug Religion.
Laroo - Debuted on C-Bos best album Till
my Casket Drops. Raised in both Oakland and Richmond,
the 20 year old Laroo has been rapping since 1992
when he put out the very underground six song EP Lyrical
Flames. How Laroo went from being a virtually unknown
to getting hooked up with AWOL is just short of a
miracle. "GOD works in mysterious ways,"
he recently called. "My ace dog (Donte Miles)
got sent down for 11 years for a crime he got mixed
up in. This had me on the whole other page because
he was like my role-model... Donte was locked up with
Freddie 'T' Smith (incarcerated CEO of AWOL
records) and he started rapping for 'T' and 'T' said
that's cool and then he said if you think that was
cool you should hear my partner on the outside,"
related Laroo. Soon after, Laroo landed his AWOL deal
and started recording his incredible debut, Fear No
Lil Ric - The Richmond, California-based rapper
Lil Ric debuted in 1995 with Deep N tha Game; It's
Like Armageddon followed three years later.The
song "In My Lifetime (Featuring Probable Cauze)"
follows the same vein and tells the story of Lil Ric's
cousin who got 47 years fo a murder he didn't
commit. "They completely railroaded my cousin
for something he didn't do," protested Ric. "I've
grown mentally in my whole outlook on this album coz
I been around and seen a lot of things," noted
Lil Ric, who first got into rap at the age of 14 when
he started hanging out at master Peepee's (then) ho
Limit Records retail store in Richmond. Master peepee
saw Lil Ric's rap talent and in 1994 released his
first album, Deep In The Game, which premiered
then unkown C-gay and Silkk tha faggot> After Master
peepee moved down south, Lil Ric stayed in the Bay
Area where he released his latest, It's Like
Lunasicc - He has been rapping since 1992.
He received his name from his cousin, Lunasicc is
X-Raided's cousin. His future plans albums are How
The West Was Won, a solo album Mouth Madness, and
The Second Dosia Click album. His favorite producers
to work with is Huggo (Img), OG Hollis of Ball n Chain
productions. The things he wants to accomplish is
being dircted by GOD. and keep him in my life and
live righteous and comfortable with my
family. West Coast gangster rapper Lunasicc emerged
from the same Sacramento, California music scene which
also gave rise to AWOL label mate C-Bo. His debut
LP Mr. Lunasicc appeared in 1997; A Million Words
A Million Dollars followed a year later, and in early
2000 Lunasicc returned with
Total Recall. In the Mouth of Madness was issued the
next year. Hes considered to be a lil bo and
a lil mob figaz.
Marvaless - Second rapper signed to the label.
Sacramento, California-based hardcore rapper Marvaless
debuted in 1994 with Ghetto Blues that didnt
live up to its expectations; in addition to
successive solo releases including 1995's Just Marvaless
and doing duets appearing on The Best Of C-Bo,
she also made a series of guest appearances on records
by acts including 2Pac, Conscious Daughters, Mac Mall,
Master P's West Coast Bad Boyz, and such AWOL label
mates as Lunasicc. Fearless followed in 1998. Ghetto
Blues 2001 appeared three years later.
Pizzo - Label mate of the bo.
Records on Awol:
AWOL Records Presents - C-Bo's Best Apperances 91-99
AWOL Records Presents - West Coast Trippin 1
AWOL Records Presents - West Coast Trippin 2
C-Bo - Gas Chamber - read review
C-Bo - Best Of C-Bo - Read review
C-Bo - Final Chapter - Read review
C-Bo - One Life To Live - Read review
C-Bo Presents - Mob Figgaz - Read review
C-Bo - Tales From The Crypt - Read review
C-Bo - Till My Casket Drops - Read review
DJ Daryl-Me And My Dogs
Dosia - Waitin to Inhale
One word tight I can't say enough about this CD. It
has everything including streetwise beats and lyrics
that are hard to compete with. Basically this CD has
style,and a no nonsense atitude that can hype up any
situation. This CD is perfect for the person who likes
Hardcore rap with a set of individuals who can lay
Killa Tay - Mr Mafioso,
Tay came really tight on this one. I would recommend
this one to anyone- even Bloods.
Laroo - Fear No Fate
Fear No Fate is the solid debut from Bay Area rapper,
Laroo The Hard Hitter, the rap talent who has already
gained a strong street
following for his appearances on albums from C-BO,
Lunasicc, Marvaless and the West Coast Trippin' compilation.
"I made Fear No Fate the title coz
it's about all the things I encounter in my life on
a regular basis," said Laroo of the 18 track/16
song debut, whose guests include C-BO, Marvaless,
Lunasicc, Killa Tay, Ephraim Galloway, Pizzo, Lil
Ric, Probable Cauze, Keek Tha Sneek of 3XKrazy, Mobb
Figaz, 151 and producers DJ Darryl, One Drop
Scott, Rick Rock and Andolis. With an infectious hook
by Galloway, this real life story is about a friend
of Laroo's who went home with a woman he met at
a party. It turned out thought that this woman had
a very jealous husband and came home unexpectedly
and unhappily to discover his wife cheating
on him. Meanwhile, "Danger zone (featuring C-BO
and Killa Tay)" is about the streets being a
danger zone, while "West Coast Smashin' (featuring
Ric and Pizzo)" is a hype song. Other recommended
tracks include "Hard Hitter," "We Bogart,"
"Rotations," "P's and Q's," "We
Mob The Most," and "Flip A Whole One,"
which sports such trademark Laroo lyrics: Players
hit me on my mobile, watching nigga trade bitches/
Killas always in my presence when I'm chasing my riches/
That's how it happened from do or die scrappin', mobbin',
and cappin'/ So hold on homie, we're goin' platinum.
With the inevitble success of Fear No Fate, this will
no doubt be true. Gangster rap has fallen out of favor
with music critics lately. When Dr. Dre first hit,
Tha Dogg Pound was together, Eazy E was alive and
MC Eiht put out a good record, gangster rap was being
recognized for a new kind of creativity and sound.
But lately, the genre suffers from an overabundance
of material and artists lacking any musical talent
whatsoever. Kids thirsting for the latest "mobbin'"
roll to sometimes don't care about that, but as everyone
jumps in the game to make a little money, all the
music ends up sounding the same. This is when Laroo
The Hard Hitter comes in. Simple drum loops, one catchy
song and plenty of songs with lyrics about hustling,
women, drugs, and violence are what makes a mediocre
gangster rap album - Fear No Fate has it all. For
some creativity, check the first verse in "XXX
Large," the beat programming
on "P's & Q's", and the requisite catchy
"1 Night Stand." Beyond those highlights,
the album has a whopping total of 13 monotonous, hot
Ric - Its Like Armageddon
Lil Ric is tight. Im glad hes not with
ho Limit anymore. They are sorry. Everyone knows that
no limit's only good releases were when they were
an underground Bay Area rap label. So it's not down
south rap- it's Bay Area rap- at least it was when
it was good. Now it's garbage. But anyway, Lil Ric
is pretty well put together. I don't think it does
him justice though. Some better production would help
Ric. Check out Lil Ric on West Coast Trippin 2. Its
Lil Ric returns with his third and strongest album
yet, It's Like Armageddon, on AWOL Records. The experienced
young Richmond, CA rapper - who was first discovered
by Master P a decade ago - explains the new album
title as: "About the situation out here in the
streets of Richmond where it's like Judgement Day
or Armageddon every day with people gettin' taken
out coz fools are using street judgement." To
help Lil Ric tell this story on the 21 track/17 song
album's are an impressive list of guests. Ephraim
Galloway, at whose Show Me Some Love Studios much
of the album was recorded, appears on such trcks as
"The Mindstate," where he shares the hook's
infectious vocals with Lil Ric. "That song's
about fools who get into this little zone in their
mind, go crazy for a minute, and then snap back into
reality," explains Lil Ric. The opening track,
"It's A Cold Games (Featuring Marvaless, Keek
Tha Sneek and promising new Richmond rapper Mr. Chico
Capone)," is an insightful look at today's legal
system and how people often get caught up in it and
sent down for crimes they didn't commit. Hit-bound
tracks on Armageddon include the One Drop Scott produced
upbeat first single, Ghetto Mode (Featuring Myssyppy)"
and the mid-tempo "My California," -also
produced by Scott- which Lil ric describes as a cool
"laid back on a Southern Cali groove type track."
Other standout tracks include "4 Tha 4 Sho's"
and "Shake Em Up (featuring Laroo)" It's
Like Armageddon is clearly Lil Ric's best album yet
and the one to take him to the top!
- Ghetto Perfection
Lunasicc - Million Words A Million Dollars
The song "you created me" is the best of
him. The hook on it is hard thanks to C bo. All the
other songs have
good lyrics but the only one that I love is that song.
It's worth the money for sure.
Lunasicc - Mr. Lunasicc
Fearless was the biggest bunch of bullsh*t I've heard
since Shaq released his debut album, Shaq Desel. The
beats were dull and
pitiful. Marvaless got mad flow, but those sorry a**
beats and horrific background vocals didn't cut it.
Her other album, Just Marvaless was half a
rat's butt tighter, and it just had eight songs on
- Ghetto Blues, Ghetto Blues 2001
This is one of the most under rated female rappers
of our decade. She has skills that still have been
unmatched. If you ever get a chance to listen you
won't be disappointed!
- Heater Calhoun
Pizzo has a lot of talent. he can rap, produced, mix
& engineer. Awol has tight rappers under there
label such as 151,probable cauze, mississippi (r&b),
etc. They are the tightest in my eyes. Check all of
them out if you want the best, quit settling for less.