|MC Tunes - "Suck It MC"|
10th March 1990
I'm not a crusader, just a white hoodlum from Manchester, that's all I am and I'll never forget that.
"If I've got something to say I'll say it. If someone pisses me off, then I'll get right on to it. That's the way I am."
The ugliest white Mancunian there is, rubs his hammered face, opens his gob and .. . BAM!
"The city's my culture and my culture is to go for it with both fucking hands and just do It. Round here you're on your own, you've got to make what you can when you can. I was a street player for a long time, I was robbing handbags, doin' all sorts of madness."
This isn't a confessional, it's just a casual conversation with MC Tunes. Wired and raring to go, the mouth, mind and manner generate enough power to light a small town.
Raised on 'get slapped, slap 'em back' principles, MC Tunes' raps have a hard edge, spat off grated vocals and delivered at point blank range. Yet behind all the macho bullshit of 'Dance Yourself To Death' and 'The Only Rhyme That Bites', lies a certain positivism. Aggression and self obsession pummelled by love, peace and harmony. Weird.
"I soon realised that the only way you get anything out of life is if you kick ass, if you thieve it or if you beg and hope for it.
And most people go for the latter, they kick ass and they suffer. People have got to believe more in themselves. People give up on life too easily."
After watching those closest to him destroy themselves, Tunes bucked up his ideas and plunged head first into hip-hop.
"Johnny Jay, the guy who introduced hip-hop to Manchester, was one of the influences on me starting rap. He introduced the rivalry, about being the best there is, I just got me head together, I wanted to be the best."
Fired by influences such as Parliament, Bootsy Collins, Jimi Hendrix and Stevie Wonder, Tunes developed his idiosyncratic style, WEA latched on, lit up and promptly called him down to London. There was no demo tape, just a live delivery in the middle of the office and the deal was sorted.
"There was none of this forelock tugging," sneers Tunes. "I was like, what you see is what you get, you want to pay me money, pay me and I'll give you 110 per cent."
"I am not made up," asserts Tunes, daring me to question his integrity. "I haven't been marketed. Somebody didn't pick me out of a crowd, stick a label on me and start selling me. It was my choice, I decided to rap, I decided to write the lyrics and I say what I want to say."
And he does. Tunes raps over anything that moves. Joining forces with 808 State, his rap now rips through a hot acid jam. Riding on hardcore rhythms and nifty gritty rhymes, MC Tunes is intent on exploring all directions, kicking hip-hop back to the edge. Keep looking over your shoulder, the age of the hippy hooligan is here.