R.I.P. To Flipside From O.F.T.B.

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Watts, California has a deep social history, as captured in films like Killer Of Sheep and moments like Wattstax. In Hip-Hop, the notorious section of South Central Los Angeles has produced major label artists in the form of Kam, Glasses Malone, and Jay Rock. One group from the publicized Nickerson Gardens that had early success was Operation From The Bottom, better known as O.F.T.B. Sadly, news emerged this morning confirming the death of group leader Flipside. Reports indicate that Flip was murdered yesterday in L.A.

The Big Beat Records group released Straight Up Watts in 1992. The trio of Flipside, Busstop and Low MB, who were members of the storied Bounty Hunter Bloods, would align with Suge Knight and Death Row Records several years later. Although the group never released an album during the height of Death Row, they worked with 2Pac, DJ Quik, and MC Hammer, appearing on the Above The Rim, Gridlock’d, and Murder Was The Case soundtracks.

The group stayed on Death Row during the early part of Suge’s 1997 incarceration, producing for lesser-known, dark-era acts like YGD Tha Top Dogg, before eventually leaving.

In 2007, O.F.T.B. self-released the album they were working on while at Death Row—The D.R. Files. The 15-song LP included contributions from Snoop Dogg, Kurupt, Tha Outlawz, and the also-tragically-gone Johnny J. Two years ago, the new ownership at Death Row (WIDEAwake), released Damn Near Dead—the unreleased work from O.F.T.B.

Sadly, Flipside was somebody who I got to know. He was a kind man, who wished that his music overshadowed his street ties, and was deeply bothered by his group not getting the shine they wanted. Rest In Peace to Kevin “Flipside” White, and our condolences to his family, loved ones, and many fans.

Check out this profile of Flipside’s life and career in the LA Weekly.

Related: Death Row Records Playlist