Nardwuar: Who are you?

Ice-T: Ice-T.

Ice-T, I have to ask you, right off the bat, did you ghostwrite this [Nardwuar gives Ice T a cassette] right here, "Mr. T's Commandments?"

Yes I did.

Mr T's Commandments

That's amazing. Can you tell me about working with Mr. T, because you're not credited on this particular record?

I'm not on there?

No. It doesn't have your name. Like if you open it up, look for your name, it doesn't say your actual name. It doesn't say Ice-T on the actual credits when you open it up.

Yeah, this is a secret. I guess back in the day I didn't feel I was ever gonna be anybody. I was around these cats who were actually doing a video for him called "Be Somebody Or Be Somebody's Fool" and they didn't really have a rapper and they asked me if I’d try to help Mr. T rap and I wrote mostly all the raps for him.

I love it. "Mr. T's Commandments," believe it, every word is...


True, yeah. 

[laughs] It was pretty whack. I mean, it's something to look back on, but the fact that I was able to even work with Mr. T? I gotta, you know, give myself a pat on the back for that.

Because it makes me think, who is the real Mr. T? Mr. T or Ice-T? Who is the real T?

Mr. T has the mohawk.

And that gives him the crown?

That's the answer, yeah. And he's bigger than me and he's more violent, I think.

Ice-T, I wanted to read you a quote from Blowfly. Blowfly says, "I'm a stand-up comedian, a rapper and a singer." What do you think about that? Are you like Blowfly?

Yeah, yeah, I try to sing, you know I sing in Body Count. But yeah I'm a stand-up comedian. I like to try and get a joke in edgewise, you know what I'm sayin'? Then I'm a rapper. I go from one side to the other. Sometimes I'm dead serious about certain issues and other times I'm just, you know, having fun.

Ice-T, is it true, David Hasselhoff, Ice-T? Is this true, you're going to be producing David Hasselhoff's rap LP?

No, there's a rumour out about that. What happened was I was doing an interview with a guy and he asks me, he says, "You're so cool Ice, you could probably make anybody rap." And I'm like, "For enough money I could make anybody rap." He said, "Could you make David Hasselhoff rap?" I said, "For $5 million I could have him rappin' like Jay-Z." So the next thing you know we got the rumour out that I'm working with David Hasselhoff. But uh, nope.

Cold Wind-Madness

I heard he's your next door neighboor.

Nope. Nah, I never even met him before.

So nothing ever came of it then? He didn't ever contact you?

The offer's still out there.

So David Hasselhoff, if you're listening to this...

Or anybody — $5 million, become a hip-hop star.

Ice-T, how are the juice wars going? How are the juice wars going, because you have the Liquid…

Yeah, I had Liquid Ice, but I got in a lawsuit with them cats and I'm not promoting them anymore.

Ah, OK, 'cause it was Liquid Ice and Nelly has the Pimp Juice, so I thought there was some juice wars going on.

I made Liquid Ice. Liquid Ice was better. It tasted better and everything, but what happened was the cats that had the company sold it to some other people and they tried to breach my contract and we had to take 'em to the max, you dig what I'm saying? We had to get our money.

Ice-T, you talked today about how you had to prepare for potential predators, battling potential predators.


Like, you never know who you'll come up against. So I offer you this: What was it like when you battled a leprechaun, in Leprechaun In The Hood?

I was worried about that leprechaun, because that leprechaun, I never saw that guy out of makeup. So he is a midget, so I would hit the corner, he was walking around, and he always looked like that so I wasn't really cool with that leprechaun. He was a strange character and he was always in character, so I just, you know, so I just read my lines and you know, stayed out of the way.

That's somebody you never prepared for, you never prepared for a leprechaun, did you Ice-T?

Nah. I ain't never thought I'd have to go head up with somebody with superpowers.

Ice-T, what was it like having a 1-900 line? You had a 1-900 line. That's pretty cool.

Yeah, that's cool. Back in the day, before the internet you know what I'm saying, so people would call. You just answer a whole bunch of questions and they'd press a button and you'd get a recording.

Ice-T, November 14. What does November 14 mean to you?

Day before November 15?

No, it's Ice-T day in Atlanta!

Yeah. [laughs] I got that years and years ago. I never went down there and flexed my key to the city. I haven't gone down there and said, "Hey, everybody shut up. It's my day." But they gave that to me years ago.

Is that the only day you have? Have you been given the keys to other cities?

I think they wish they took that day back. I think after they gave that to me people said, "Do you really know who he is?" So you know, I would make it so November 14, in Atlanta, all titties will be bare.

Ice-T, were you the first guy to say "ho" on a record?

I dunno, maybe, me or Too $hort, probably.

I want to ask you about some of these Ice-T album jackets here. [Nardwuar pulls out some vintage Ice T vinyl] We have the "Coldest Rap." First off, let's zero in on that photo of you. What is going on there Ice-T?

Well, that's the old hip-hop style, you know what I'm saying? A lot of metal, a lot of studs and stuff. If you looked at Melle Mel And The Furious Five, and all of us was wearing. It was real heavy metal so that was the style back then.

Were you told to wear that?

Nah. That was how MCs, we wanted to look tough, so that's what we wore.

And there's the "Coldest Rap," that's where I thought the rap that contained the word "ho" for the first time was on wax.

Yeah, this is my first record. This is not actually on the right label. It's on a record label called Saturn, but you know I still have my hat on and my glasses and stuff. You know, back in the day that was the cool look.

Now, they dressed you up for the movie Breakin'? Did they dress you up?

Nah. That was just my clothes.

So those were your clothes?

Yeah, I had on, like, a bomber jacket and a hat from Neiman Marcus and uh, just doing my thing.

Ice-T, underneath that record, if you could just lift them, we have another compilation called The Compton Compilation. And if you could turn that over for a second, I wanted to ask you about this. Here we have a picture of Compton's Most Wanted with a white guy in the band!

Yeah, well you know, there's white people in Compton. Actually, that was MC Eiht and their crew, you know what I'm saying? I mean it was like, who was in the original NWA? Arabian Prince was in that group back in the day, you know what I'm saying? So there's white people in Compton, you know that?

And right over here we have Vanilla C, a female rapper. What's the history of female gangsta rappers, Ice-T?

I dunno. The trip with gangsta rappers is once a girl acts too hard it's like she no longer acts like a girl, so it's kinda like a paradox, you know what I'm saying? They can only rap so hard then they start sounding man-ish, so it never really works. I think the only real people that really mastered that are Foxy Brown and say, Lil' Kim.

What do you think, if we could move his record out, of this record? This person right here?

Terry C, right?

Terry C. What's the importance of Terry C, a white woman gangsta rapper?

Yeah, somehow Eazy hooked up with her and she was like supposed to be the next thing and stuff but I never really met her. From what I understood she was an interesting chick, had an ill personality. A lot of people weren't really getting along with her, but then I heard she turned over and started to try and do rock.

I've been mentioning the women because you're hosting VH1 Hip-Hip Honors and I understand you're inducting MC Lyte into the hall of fame. MC Lyte!

Yeah, MC Lyte is a hardcore rapper.

East coast.

Yeah, east coast, I wouldn't call her gangsta rap, but she was hardcore. You know, she was right on the edge and very much respected and one of the pioneers of the early, rugged style of rap.


Ice-T, we have [Nardwuar pull out another vinyl LP] here The Posse, Chapter Two, another Compton record.


On the back here I find it neat there are some pictures here  of  the 2 Live Crew when they were from L.A.

Yeah, people don't know that. Actually brother Marquis was really, used to be my hypeman. He used to come out on stage with us at some of our shows and all the groups from L.A. originally started on Macola Records see. Macola was a pressing plant in L.A. that we could go to and you could go in there with a tape and they would make you a record. So that's what me, NWA, all the L.A. groups started right there.

And right there [pointing to the record] we have the Digital Underground. Now at this time was 2Pac dancing for Digital Underground? What can you say about 2Pac dancing for Digital Underground?

Yeah, 2Pac was dancing and doing the whole Digital thing. You know, "Doowutchyalike" like and all that kinda stuff, having a good time, you know. He didn't really jump off until he went into his solo career with the more hardcore stuff.

And   here we have Ice-T![Nardwuar pulls out a another Ice T LP] What do you remember about this? This is one cool record cover, Ice-T.

[looking at record] It's me and Evil, you know what I'm saying? And uh, you know, everybody's just trying to, we had the gun. I had the .38, you know. Back in the day I had the three fingered ring right there that everybody wanted. Some fresh Jordans, you know what I'm saying? It was just being funky fresh, just keeping it real clean.

Do you still have that outfit?

Nah. I don't have that outfit. But it would still look good today.

Ice-T, one other thing I was wondering about was "99 Problems." What's the history of that song? It’s your song. Jay-Z took it, and now apparently there's some links to 2 Live Crew?

What happened was, the true story is Brother Marquis made that comment one time I was with him. And he was like you know "I got 99 problems and a bitch ain't one." So I thought we can make a record off of that, so I call Marquis and flew him out to L.A. Me and him did the record together, paid him and everything was cool and that was that. Years later, Jay-Z hears the record from Rick Rubin and decides he wants to remake it, remakes the hook and does it. Then Marquis comes back and hears Jay-Z did it and decides he wants more money, but all the money was already paid out. I didn't get any more money or any publishing from it because I had a publishing deal at the time. So he decides he wants to sue me and all kinds of nasty stuff which friends shouldn't do to each other, but that's the true story. Nothing's happened since then. You know, it's kinda water under the bridge, you know, but the first "99 Problems" was done by myself and Brother Marquis from 2 Live Crew.

Ice-T, what did you do on Fame? You were on Fame. What did you do on Fame?

Breakdancer, I was a breakdancer.

Would  you get paid for that? Did you negotiate a good deal or was it like those other movies where you didn’t get as much money?

Nah, we got paid scale, you know, so probably, like, seven grand.

Ice-T, you're a good friend of Jello Biafra. How come Jello Biafra, ex-Dead Kennedy is the real G? How is Jello Biafra the real G?

Well, you know, real G's basically, if you want to get into it, it just means you're original. You know, and Jello Biafra is one of the original Dead Kennedys members, one of the original punkers, one of the original people who really set the mode for early punk rock and stuff like that, so that makes him a G. If you're obviously a copy of somebody, you don't get that G. You can't be called a G, you basically a replica.

Ice-T, do you still like Sizzler?

Yeah, Sizzler's more of a west coast place, you know. In New York right now we go to Tad's.

Ice-T, the movie 3,000 Miles To Graceland.


I was a bit upset at the end of that movie. You're suspended from a flying fox and you totally get murdered. Why did you agree to do that? Was that just for the money? Because I felt mad. Ice-T, you had no chance to live in that movie did you?

Uh, well the true story was the cat that was directing that wanted me to be one of the Elvis' at the beginning of the movie. And I couldn't do it because I had another obligation. And they actually wrote that part in the movie to bring me in at the end, so it was kinda like the director wanted me to be, like I got a cool part playing Hamilton and it was a pretty exciting moment in the movie. So I get a lot of clips in action sequence shows.

So you're just hanging basically from a meat hook getting nailed.

Just spinning around shooting two guns. It was cool. It was fun.

Ice-T, Dan Quayle, did he get a gold record for helping Body Count?

Yeah, we gave Dan Quayle a gold record. We gave Charlton Heston a gold record. Not so much they helped us, but it was just like they was so stupid so, you know, you can call, once you have an official gold record you can call and get anybody's name connected to it. So we got one with Charlton Heston's name on it and one with Quayle. We haven't ever presented it to 'em.

Ice-T, you recently played the Leeds Festival with Body Count, didn't you?

Yes sir.

And you were heard saying, "The main stage is full of pussies."


What is a pussy, Ice-T?

Just a pussy. Everybody knows what a pussy is. Just… I guess a pussy is something that has no balls.

Ice-T, what's wrong with teddy bears? Why don't you like teddy bears? You're saying Kanye West has a teddy bear. Why don't you like teddy bears?

I don't understand grown men with teddy bears. I don't understand it. I mean, Kanye West is cool, I mean he just threw me with the teddy bear.

Ice-T, I wanted to ask you lastly here, about this record right here [Nardwuar pulls out an LP], we have the Jimmy Castor Bunch. What can you tell the people about the Jimmy Castor Bunch? You used a sample of this on your Power record.

Uh, you know, Afrika Islam produced a lot of my music and he was into the old original hardcore funk bands like Jimmy Castor Bunch and Dazz Band and all the real heavy grooves like that. So that's part of hip-hop is taking something that may be, you know, obscure to other people and making it funky. That's what hip-hop is about.

And you were saying Ice-T, that your band has splintered. Is it true that your ex-associate the Egyptian Lover is a pimp or is it DJ Aladdin who is a pimp?

DJ Aladdin's a pimp [laughs]. DJ Aladdin is now pimpin' somewhere. He may be up here in Canada with his groove on. Egyptian Lover, from what I last understood, is out DJing all over the world.

Because he was in the movie Breakin' with you right?

Uh, he was in there with Afrika Islam and The Glove.

Ice-T, anything else you want to add to the people out there?

Nah, I think you got enough. You're a very interesting guy and I like your wardrobe.

Well, thank you very much Ice-T, I appreciate that.

Yeah it's real pimpish. I like how it’s going down. It's real big.

Ice-T, why should people care about Ice-T and Body Count?

I dunno. I mean you gotta care about something, why not care about us? You know what I'm saying? I think music is just like going to the ice cream store, man. You know, if you don't like this flavour pick out another flavour. I just happen to be one of the flavours in the ice cream store.

Well, thanks so much Ice-T, keep on rockin’ in the free world and doot doola doot doo…

Bang bang.