Ice-T was in the middle of shooting an episode of Law & Order: Special Victims Unit when his name became a trending Twitter topic on Thursday night
Questlove was among the many who were shocked by the comment and replied, “wait what?—-as someone who lived through it—yes he was regional—but uh….High Roller/New Jack Hustler/Original Gangsta/Colors/6 In The Mornin’ are MAJOR jawns.”
Journalist Tariq Nasheed chimed in, “Dude…Ice T had to face attacks from high ranking officials in the US government to help make it possible for rappers today to speak freely on records. These new ninjas are something else.”
But Ice-T had no idea his name was momentarily the topic of discussion on the massive social media platform. When reached for comment, he initially told HipHopDX, “What? I have no idea what happened.”
Once Ice was briefed on the situation, he had a few words for the person who sparked the onslaught of rebuttals.
“I had no idea what happened,” he continued. “But if you’ve played the game right, your fans will always hold you down when some clown ass tries to diss on the low. I may not be in anybody’s Top 5, but I’ve taken Hip Hop for a ride I hope others get to enjoy. Thanks to all that fuck with me.”
For those who don’t know, Ice-T is a bona fide pioneer when it comes to gangsta rap. Inspired by Schoolly D’s “PSK (What Does It Mean?)” in 1985, Ice-T got to work and penned “6 ‘N The Morning” from his 1987 Rhyme Pays.
The track features arguably one of the most memorable opening lines for a rap song ever with, “6’n the morning’ police at my door/Fresh adidas squeak across the bathroom floor.”
A year later, Ice-T followed up with Power, which included now-classic songs “I’m Your Pusher” and “High Rollers.”
1991 saw the release of O.G. Original Gangster featuring the Grammy Award-winning “New Jack Hustler (Nino’s Theme),” which was originally released as a single for the 1991 Mario Van Peebles film New Jack City, his first major movie role.
In an interview with HipHopDX last May, Ice-T talked about what made his fourth studio album so impactful.
“The first two or three albums I did, there was no N.W.A,” he said. “So N.W.A hadn’t hit. The term gangster rap wasn’t even out. The press called it ‘gangster rap’ because Cube said, ‘Well, I’m from a gang called niggas with attitude.’ He didn’t say I’m from a group. The press coined us gangster rappers, and this was me claiming the throne. This was me saying, ‘Well, if this is gangster rap, well I’m the original gangster.’
I was kind of flexing myself. Not that I was against the N.W.A. I was happy for N.W.A., but I wanted to stake my claim. It was very interesting. I was just looking at a photo on Twitter last week, and this guy was making paintings of saints and he had Snoop as the LBC [Long Beach] saint, Cube as a Compton saint and me as South Central saint.
He added, “It’s true that I represented South Central, not Compton or Long Beach. These are three different places.”
Since then, Ice-T has become a successful actor and entrepreneur while fronting the Grammy Award-winning metal band Body Count. Those who are up on Ice-T’s undeniable contributions to Hip Hop culture quickly came to his defense.
Check out some of the reactions below.