The relationship between hip hop and Hollywood is one that stems back to the days of ghetto blasters and MC battles deep in the heart of the Bronx. With depictions of charismatic kingpins like Tony Montana and epic crime stories like The Godfather, Hollywood provided enough material for MCs to borrow from for decades to come. While famous actors portrayed these memorable characters on the big screen, MCs began making subtle or not so subtle references to their favorite films in their rhymes. As a seasoned MC and avid movie fan, Tech N9ne has a lengthy track record of borrowing from his favorite films and characters. Everything from comedies to horror films are referenced in Tech’s music, and while some are clear, others may have slipped by even the most careful of listeners. This is a list of the Top 10 movie references in Tech N9ne’s music.
10) “Red Nose” – Movie: Mask
Looking to put the industry on blast, Tech N9ne set his sights on every DJ, label executive, and program director responsible for keeping good music out of the mainstream. Embracing his crazed look and reputation for being different, Tech N9ne took on the ugliness like Rocky Dennis of the 1985 film, Mask. As the lead character in Mask, Rocky Dennis faced discrimination and ridicule for his disfigurement, something Tech N9ne could relate to when he spit:
“So I’m Rocky Dennis
But I’m so polished, Nothing can stop me in this”
9) “So Lonely” – Movie: The Mask
Reserved for only the elite MCs, “So Lonely” was originally meant to feature Eminem. A cry from the top, Tech N9ne and Blind Fury traded verses about being so alone in their goal to be the best. Here, Tech couldn’t resist name dropping Jim Carrey’s character from The Mask. Referencing Stanley Ipkiss’ alter ego, Tech flowed:
“Whammy is wicked
Face covered up just like Stanley Ipkiss
But damn he is lifted were no families listed”
8 ) “KC Tea” – Movie: Black Dynamite
A sequel of sorts to his 2006 hit, “Caribou Lou”, Tech N9ne brought the party back on “KC Tea”. With the drinks pouring and the good times in full swing, Tech’s charismatic and hilarious personality came through with his send up to the mock Blaxploitation film, Black Dynamite. A quick shout out to the film’s ridiculous Cream Corn character gave us:
“My money mayne is on Hennessey and the image of cream corn
I’m runnin thangs ( I’m runnin Thaaangs)”
7) “KC Tea” -Movie: The Big Lebowski
Tech wasn’t quite done with the drinks or the movie references on “KC Tea”. Showing a little love for slackers and drinkers everywhere, Tech threw a quick reference to Jeff Bridges’ character, The Dude, from The Big Lebowski. Always concerned for his drinks, Tech warned:
“They started fightin and my leg was near rammed
I told em take it easy there’s a beverage here man”
6) “Hellevator” – Movie: Hellraiser
On the now classic Anghellic, Tech explored themes of spiritual struggle and real life horrors. Taking listeners on a journey from hell to heaven, Tech’s love for horror movies made an appearance on the “Hellevator”. Using samples from the 1987 film, Hellraiser, the skit welcomes listeners to the frightening world they are about to encounter. As if to open the gates of hell, Pinhead greeted the damned souls with:
“We have such sights to show you”
5) “Psycho Bitch” – Movie: Halloween
Tech N9ne forever cemented the term “Psycho Bitch” with this classic from Anghellic. A tribute to the crazed females in everyone’s life, Tech gave the track an extra bit of insanity by sampling John Carperter’s “Halloween Theme” from the 1978 hit, Halloween. With chilling piano notes, the original theme was a perfect fit for this terrifying tale of twisted love.
4) “Sinister Tech” -Movie: Superman II
Declaring his dominance over other MCs, Tech fired back at everyone on “Sinister Tech”. With furious flows and daring words, Tech’s unique style was never so prominently showcased than on this track. As the man who demanded Superman to kneel before him, General Zod was the villainous lead in Superman II. Taking on the role of General Zod, Tech commanded:
“Your whole facade’s punkish,
I’ll make you kneel before Zod”
3) “Smoke Sumting” – Movie: Training Day
Just because he is the King Of Darkness doesn’t mean he can’t appreciate a funny moment. On 2008’s “Smoke Sumting”, Tech N9ne weaved his way through syllables with a silly and playful delivery. On one of the track’s funnier rhymes, Tech relives the ending of Training Day with a Denzel Washington impersonation:
“Then hiyah, I’m gunnin you with the glock brick in the dash
Screamin, Ah, you son of a bitch, you shot me in the ass”
2) “Let Me In” – Movie: Life
Firing back at the discriminatory ways of Kansas City’s Power & Light District, Tech N9ne gave fans this smash hit from Sickology 101. An admitted fan of Martin Lawrence, Tech and Krizz Kaliko reenacted the gut bustingly hilarious “nigga pie” scene from Life, also starring Eddie Murphy. Putting their own spin on the scene, the opening skit to the track has become a fan favorite over the years, and is without a doubt one of the funniest moments on any Tech N9ne release.
“How much it gon’ take to turn this all white club into a nigga club?”
1) “Am I A Psycho?”– Movie: Old School
Proving to be completely out of his mind, Tech N9ne put his psychotic tendencies out in the open on this huge hit from All 6’s And 7’s. Accompanied by B.o.B and Hopsin, Tech threw listeners into the middle of a true nuthouse. The now famous start to his verse was lifted from the 2003 comedy film, Old School. With Will Ferrell in mind, Tech delivered the hilarious opening that has gone on to become a popular catchphrase with fans worldwide.
“You’re crazy, I like you, but you’re crazy, my tours paid me
So I used that dough to allure ladies to manure bathe me”
As Tech prepares to release Welcome To Strangeland, there is no telling what new movies he could be waiting to insert into his music. Be sure to share your favorite Tech N9ne movie references in the comments below!
-Victor Sandoval, Assistant Editor Strange Music
Follow Victor on Twitter: @VicMSandoval