25 Years Ago Today Kid ‘n Play Switched It Up For Class Act (Video)
While Kid ‘n Play’s Hip-Hop career dates back to 1987’s Select Records breakout “Last Night,” the ’90s would be their definitive decade. Christopher “Kid” Reid and Christopher “Play” Martin brought their showmanship to film, in a big way. In 1990, the pair were incredibly busy. In addition to a self-titled NBC animated series, the first House Party released to theaters. The New Line Cinema franchise launched by writer/director Reginald Hudlin would be a film staple of the early ’90s.
However, as that was happening, Motown wanted in the Kid ‘n Play business too. Following the first two House Party films, on June 5, 1992 Class Act released. “Duncan Pinderhughes” and “Blade Brown” switched styles, in a film that starred Karyn Parsons, Doug E. Doug, and the late Tommy Ford of Martin fame.
The film was co-produced by Motown’s Suzanne de Passe, and penned by emerging writer Randall Miller (Houseguest, The 6th Man). Paulie Shore and Rhea Pearlman would also make cameos in the film that playfully included shootouts, Rap talent shows, and a quirky, sexual William Shakepeare reference.
In Hip-Hop the fame has been referenced in contemporary Rap lyrics. Smoke DZA blasted on “New Jack”: “I’m a class act, you looking at the real life Blade Brown / You acting like I won’t abuse ni**as / Square ass lame Duncan Pinderhughes ni**as” from his Rugby Thompson album with Harry Fraud.
Although the film may have covered Hip-Hop culture with some overt stereotypes, Heads can rejoice in the soundtrack inclusion of Lord Finesse’s “Set It Off Troop” (produced by Showbiz) during his Rhyme Syndicate days:
Kid ‘n Play, some DJ Quik-produced Penthouse Players, Monie Love, and Jade were also on the soundtrack.
#BonusBeat: Karyn Parsons was recently on Sway On The Morning:
Parsons is now president of Sweet Blackberry, a foundation that aims to teach children stories of African American achievement