Cypress Hill Explain Passing On “Jump Around” & Why It Remains A Good Decision

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Hip-Hop Fans, we need your help...We recently launched AFH TV, a streaming video service focused on Hip-Hop culture. We already have exclusive interviews, documentaries, and rare freestyles featuring some of Rap’s most iconic artists and personalities. But, there is so much more to come--movies, TV series, talk shows--and we need your support to make it a reality. Please subscribe to AFH TV. It is only $1.99/month or $12/year, and offers 30-day free trials. Thank you.

In 1992, an emerging Hip-Hop group named House Of Pain became overnight mainstream sensations, thanks to single “Jump Around.” The Tommy Boy Records song, belonging to the group’s subsequent self-titled debut, would reach #3 on the charts. The Irish American-themed trio of Everlast, Danny Boy, and DJ Lethal would score platinum on the single, and the album—likely because of it. In the two LPs that followed, the group would never match the success of that breakthrough single, that made popular culture figures out of the New York-based act.

Although House Of Pain was a new group in ’92, its front man was not. Everlast had gained recognition care of Ice-T and Rhyme Syndicate in the late ’80s and early 1990s. Ice executive produced 1990’s Forever Everlasting, a Warner Bros. release that showed range within a Syndicate that also grew to include Donald D, Lord Finesse, WC & DJ Aladdin (Low Profile), DJ Hen G, Afrika Islam, DJ Evil-E, among others.

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In close proximity to Ice and Rhyme Syndicate was The 7A3. The Los Angeles, California trio of Brett Bouldin, Sean Bouldin, and DJ Muggs released Coolin’ In Cali in 1988. Alongside Ice, they appeared on that year’s soundtrack to Colors.

By 1992, Everlast and Muggs had reinvented themselves through new brands. Cypress Hill, signed to RuffHouse/Sony Records, was one of ’91’s biggest breakout Hip-Hop acts. In ’92, H.O.P. followed. Notably, Muggs produced eight of the LP’s 16 musical tracks. As Cypress Hill was on the rise at the time, a longstanding rumor surrounded the group (including B-Real and Sen Dog). They reportedly passed on the hit “Jump Around.”

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Nearly 25 years later, Sen Dog confirmed that rumor as well as justified the passing in a conversation with Medium’s Cuepoint. “I’ll tell you a little story that I don’t tell many people. [DJ] Muggs had approached B-Real and myself to do ‘Jump Around’ and our reaction was like, ‘Well, that’s what people are doing at our shows anyway. Why would we want to make a song called ‘Jump Around’?”‘ Sen told Cuepoint with a laugh. “We were like ‘Give it to the white boys’ and House of Pain got that song.” The chorus was presumably built into Muggs’ track.

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Sen, who joined his band-mates in celebrating 25 years since the Cypress Hill album last month, further admitted writer’s block. “It was the only time in my life that I could not come up with a good idea to one of Muggs’ songs. So I gave it back to him and told him to give it to Everlast and… boom. That was the last time I told myself I can’t or I won’t.”

Referring to Cypress and House as “brother bands” in the interview, Sen Dog believes the decision galvanized a unified front. “[House Of Pain] together with Cypress [would become] a really strong movement. We think we made the right decision there.”

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While Sen Dog did not appear on House Of Pain, B-Real featured on Muggs production for “Put Your Head Out.”

House Of Pain would join Cypress Hill in Soul Assassins, a mass recording collective that grew to include RZA, Alchemist, Funkdoobiest, and La Coka Nostra. L.C.N. is a group that has featured the members of H.O.P. at times, as well.

In 1998, Everlast would go solo again to release Whitey Ford Sings The Blues. The Tommy Boy/Warner Bros. Records album would be a Top 10 debut and achieve multi-platinum success.

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The Cuepoint interview with Sen (and B-Real) largely touches upon the anniversary, and Cypress Hill’s credit for helping make marijuana mainstream.