Fresh Kid Ice
Fresh Kid Ice in the early eighties
|Christopher Wong Won|
|Born||May 29, 1964|
Port of Spain, Trinidad and Tobago
|Died||July 13, 2017 (aged 53)|
Miami, Florida, U.S.
Lil Joe Records
|2 Live Crew, Luther Campbell, Mr. Mixx, Brother Marquis, Verb, Flo Rida, JT Money|
Christopher Wong Won, known by his stage names Fresh Kid Ice and The Chinaman (May 29, 1964 - July 13, 2017), was an American hip hop, Miami bass recording artist and an Asian hip hop pioneer. He was a founding member of the best selling rap group 2 Live Crew known for their considerable controversy with the sexual themes in their work, particularly on their album As Nasty As They Wanna Be which led to a famous legal case. Fresh Kid Ice was the only 2 Live Crew member to appear on all albums, and was the first prominent Asian rapper. In many of his raps, he gave himself the nickname Chinaman.
Wong Won was born in Port of Spain, Trinidad and Tobago. Afro-Chinese, Wong Won's family is of Trinidadian Chinese descent, mostly coming from Hong Kong; both of his grandmothers were of African descent. At the age of 12 he moved to Brooklyn, New York. In 1982 he graduated from Samuel J. Tilden High School, and that summer he joined the U.S. Air Force for a four-year stint.
While stationed at March Air Force Base in Riverside, California, in 1984, he met fellow musicians Amazing Vee and Mr. Mixx to form the rap group 2 Live Crew. The trio would perform in small venues on weekends, unbeknownst to those in charge of the base. They eventually released their first single, "Revelation", on their own label "Fresh Beat Records" in 1984. The A-side of "Revelation" contained a song by the same where the only rapper featured was Amazing Vee, and on the B-Side it contained a song named "2 Live" where Fresh Kid Ice was the only rapper featured."Revelation" was popular in Florida, so 2 Live Crew, without Amazing Vee who wanted to perform a new style of rap, relocated to Miami. Due to the subsequent success of 2 Live Crew, this made Fresh Kid Ice the first rapper to be noted in Asian American in hip hop, and the first Asian rapper to gain notoriety.
In 1985, for their next single "What I Like" Fresh Kid Ice was the only MC featured on the track released on Fresh Beàt Records.
In Januany 1986, they released the single "Throw the D" with "Ghetto Bass" on the B-side, again he was the only rapper on the record. The single gave a permanent blueprint to how future Miami bass songs were written and produced. The fact that he was alone made him the first Miami Bass Rapper. They went into a joint venture with Luther Campbell to start Luke Skyyywalker Records for the group. Shortly after Luke Skyywalker joined 2 Live Crew. In April of that year Brother Marquis joined the group in Miami. Luke Skyywalker gave The 2 Live Crew a record deal and officially joined the group with his newly founded label Luke Skyywalker Record. They exploded on the local scene with their Gold-selling debut album, The 2 Live Crew Is What We Are (1986). Notorious for sexually explicit lyrics, that even made DJ of the time uncomfortable, this made Fresh Kid Ice and his group mates rap superstars.
In 1988, the group released their second album, Move Somethin' It was certified Gold and featured the singles "Move Somethin'" and "Do Wah Diddy Diddy". The album improved on the charts from the previous album, making in to #68 on the Billboard 200 and #20 on the Top R&B/Hip Hop Albums chart.
Campbell decided to sell a separate clean version in addition to the explicit version of the album, Move Somethin'. Around that time record store clerk in Alexander City, Alabama, was cited for selling a copy to an undercover police officer in 1988. It was the first time in the United States that a record store owner was held liable for obscenity over music. The charges were dropped after a jury found the record store not guilty.
Their third album As Nasty As They Wanna Be (1989), it became the group's largest seller, being certified double platinum by the Recording Industry Association of America. Their single "Me So Horny" peaked at 26 at the Top 100. In 1990, the United States District Court for the Southern District of Florida ruled that the album was legally obscene; this ruling was later overturned by the Eleventh Circuit. It is the first album in history to be deemed legally obscene. An obscenity trial followed, in which Henry Louis Gates Jr., addressed the court on behalf of the defendants, all of whom were eventually acquitted.
In 1990, Fresh Kid Ice with the 2 Live Crew before their original split. First Banned in the U.S.A. (1990), originally credited as Luke's solo album featuring 2 Live Crew and in later editions credited as a 2 Live Crew album. The album included the hits "Do the Bart" and the title track who peaked at 20 on the Top 100. The eponymous title single is a reference to the decision in a court case that its album As Nasty As They Wanna Be was obscene (the decision would later be overturned on appeal). Bruce Springsteen granted the group permission to interpolate his song "Born in the U.S.A." for it. It was also the very first release to bear the RIAA-standard Parental Advisory warning sticker.
Displeased over the decision of Florida Governor Bob Martinez who, on being asked to examine the album, decided it was obscene and recommended local law enforcement take action against it and over the subsequent action of Broward County, Florida, sheriff Nick Navarro, who arrested local record-store owners on obscenity charges for selling the group's albums and the subsequent arrest of members of the group on obscenity charges, the group included the song "Fuck Martinez", which also includes multiple repetitions of the phrase "fuck Navarro". The group found two other men with the same names, and had them sign releases, as they thought that this action would make it impossible for Martinez or Navarro to sue them.
That same year they released Live in Concert is the first and only live album by American rap group 2 Live Crew and their fifth record overall. It was released under the Effect subsidiary label of Luke Records, a move that was deemed necessary for the company to be able to release additional 2 Live Crew material outside of their distribution deal with Atlantic Records, which was signed in 1990 - the same year they released Banned In The U.S.A.. The album peaked at number 46 on the Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums.
Sports Weekend: As Nasty as They Wanna Be, Pt. 2 (1991). is the sixth album overall and fifth studio album by the 2 Live Crew (released in 1991) and the sequel of As Nasty As They Wanna Be. A clean version was released later that same year titled Sports Weekend: As Clean As They Wanna Be Part II and was the sequel of As Clean As They Wanna Be. This would be the last studio album by all original members of the 2 Live Crew.
The Chinaman was the first solo album by Fresh Kid Ice. It was released in 1992 by Effect Records, a division of Luke Records. Singles that were released to promote the album were "Dick 'Em Down," "I'll Be There," and "Freak 'Em Down" (the clean version of "Dick 'Em Down," which wasn't featured in the album). "Freak 'Em Down" was turned into a video clip. The album is noted for being the first hip hop album embracing having an Asian heritage. With songs like "Long Dick Chinese," he inverted stereotypes into prideful declarations of self-identity. He showed there was a way for Asians to exist in hip-hop.,The Chinaman sold over 200,000 with very limited promotion. On the Billboard charts it peaked at #38 and stayed two weeks on the Heatseekers Albums Chart, and was on the Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums Chart for ten weeks, peaking at #56.
Deal with This was released in 1993, as a 2 Live Crew/Rock On Crew album. The tracks that appeared on this album were unreleased songs that Fresh Kid Ice and Mr. Mixx had recorded before Brother Marquis and Luke Skyywalker joined the group. Fresh Kid Ice is the only rapper featured aside from three early tracks with former member Amazing V. It was released independently on January 20, 1993 for Macola Records and was entirely produced by Mr. Mixx.
In 1994, he reunited with Luther Campbell, and a local rapper named Verb made an album under the banner The New 2 Live Crew. It is the last 2 Live Crew related project to feature Luther Campbell. Mr. Mixx is not present and is the only 2 Live Crew project without Brother Marquis. The album became a moderate hit, peaking at #52 on the Billboard 200 and #9 on the Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums, as well as producing two charting singles, "Hell, Yeah" and "You Go Girl" who were both made into music videos.
Shortly after the recording of "The New 2 Live Crew" Back at Your Ass for the Nine-4, Fresh Kid Ice, Brother Marquis and Mr. Mixx re-formed again to record "Hoochie Mama" for the soundtrack of 1995 movie Friday. The soundtrack reached No. 1 on the Billboard 200, where it held the position for two weeks, and the Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums chart for six weeks.
In 1996, he reunited with Brother Marquis and Mr. Mixx. Under the 2 Live Crew banner they made the album Shake a Lil' Somethin' who's hit song by the same name, peaked 72 on the Top 100, at #11 on the Hot Rap Singles chart. Also on the Hot Rap Singles category, "Do the Damn Thing", which made it to #24 and "Be My Private Dancer", which peaked at #34. It would be the last album to feature Mr. Mixx.
In 1998, he made with Brother Marquis The Real One the final 2 Live Crew to date. Its single "2 Live Party" featuring KC of KC and the Sunshine Band and Freak Nasty peaked at #52 on the Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs and #9 on the Hot Rap Songs, and title single "The Real One" (the only song where he doesn't rap) featuring Ice-T peaked at #60 on the Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs and #9 on the Hot Rap Songs.
In 2000, he released his second solo Still Nasty under his own label Chinaman Records. The main single for this album was a song named "I Wanna Dance Yall'". The song was made into a video clip, and due to its explicit content it could only be played exclusively on "BET Uncut". It became one of the shows favorite and was noted for being one of the video that helped launched the show. Wong Won would go on to be a regular fixture of the show, where he also promoted his later album of that decade.
In 2003,Stop Playin was released under his own label Chinaman Records and Manufactured and Distributed by NewHotMusic.com/PGE Also that year, he was a featured guest alongside Esham and Fish & Grits on the song "Wicked Wild" by the group Insane Clown Posse. The song appears in the Album "Psychopathics From Outer Space Part 2".
While in the audience of a nightclub doing a hip hop show, Fresh Kid Ice took notice of a then unknown Flo Rida and asked him to be his hype man and back-up rapper..Shortly after he took him for a show in Hawaii, and toured together a while. They developed a long lasting friendship, Flo Rida considers this period as his schooling.
In 2006 he released a three songs EP called Get Freaky.
Circa 2006-2007 Fresh Kid Ice and Brother Marquis discussed their differences and decided to relaunch 2 Live Crew. They tried to offer other past members to be involved but declined. Since the both of them have been touring and released singles.
Later that year, the both of them released the singles I'm 2 Live featuring Mannie Fresh, Couguar, Boom featuring E-40. They announced the release of an album called Just Wanna be Heard that remains unreleased till this day.
In 2012, he released a solo single named Twerk That.
In 2014, they released the single Take It Off. It was turned into a music video with cameos by Flo Rida, Trick Daddy, Trina, Mannie Fresh, and Flavor Flav. Later that year they made a cameo in the Flo Rida music video G.D.F.R.
Also that year they announced an album called Turn Me On, which remains unreleased.
My Rise 2 Fame is a biography written by Fresh Kid Ice. It was also released in 2015 and was published by the Iconic Three Media Group. The memoirs is co-written by Jacob Katel. The books features his stories of his sex, lies, the music business, making gold and multi-platinum albums, a legendary lawsuit from Florida's governor who tried to ban the group and take away their first amendment right to free speech, his early life, and his current life with his family. It's a historic ride through one of the world's favorite cult genres: "Miami Bass".
In late November of that year, he released the single Dick in Ya Mouth.
In 2017, he released a compilation album named Breaking Glass Ceilings Vol. 1 on his Label Chinaman Records distributed by NewHotMusic.com. Notable artists on this volume include Threi and Chilly Chill of Lench Mob Records fame, and JT Money. The rest of the slate are new rappers.
Shortly before the release of Move Somethin' in 1988, Fresh Kid Ice was in a near fatal car accident. His injuries included damage to his brachial plexus, which resulted in a loss of mobility in his left arm. He also suffered his first stroke on Thanksgiving 2009, followed by a second stroke early 2010. He had to retrain himself to walk and correct his speech.
On July 13, 2017, Fresh Kid Ice died in a Miami, Florida hospital at age 53 from cirrhosis of the liver. The Miami-Dade County Medical Examiner said other contributing factors to Fresh Kid's death also included Hepatitis C and a history of alcohol. Before his passing, he suffered from acute respiratory failure and went into shock before his death.
Miami Bass, Booty Bass, Booty Music, or whatever you want to call it, changed the scenes of hip hop, dance music, and pop forever...The story of music's dirtiest genre reaches back to the '80s with roots set firmly in Afrika Bambaataa's elektro-funk...foundational artists Amos Larkins and Maggotron, both of whom have been credited as kicking the regional sound into motion. According to Stylus Magazine, Larkins and the Miami Bass conception can be traced back to the movie Knights of the City...Inspired by the humid and vice-ridden melting pot of cultures, ...MC A.D.E.'s "Bass Rock Express" gets the title for first hit of the genre, but it was 2 Live Crew who became the poster boys of movement. Record store owners who sold the album were arrested and charged with crimes of obscenity, and 2 Live Crew members were arrested just for playing shows...US Appeals Court system ruled rap was protected by First Amendment rights...2 Live Crew made it safe for hip-hop as we know it to exist. The influence of the genre is far-reaching...Miami Bass remains not only one of the most ridiculous and enjoyable genres of music in recent memory but also one of the most important.