Since Krs-One is not really  what one would classify as a Gangsta/Thug Emcee… I’m just gonna post about this album right here. “Criminal Minded” set off a lot of different mentalities in Hip-Hop. Not only on the Gangsta style of Emceeing but on the Artistic side as well. I mean it was all artistic. Just a collage of the Gangsta mentality that existed at that time and still does in some cases. As a youth , I use to walk around the neighborhood singing “9mm” and amazed with the lyrics. Like, he really talking about killing somebody. HAAA! That shit use to scare me too. HAAA! But I couldn’t stop singing it. Living in Queens and still reciting “South Bronx” and “The Bridge is Over” is wild. It almost made you feel like you shouldn’ feel proud to be from Queens. That’s how serious it was. HAAAA! Queens cats use to catch mad flac! HAAAA! We took it on the chin though. Definitely one of the best Hip-Hop albums of all time. After Scott La Roc passed, KRS switched some of the direction. It was still Hardcore Hip-Hop but KRS started the “Stop the Violence Movement” as well. An amazing feat because Non-Violence was looked at as being soft but he showed even the hardest of the hard that it was intelligence. Plus, it wasn’t on some ol’ turn the other cheek shit! HAAAAA! Guess that’s one of the reasons he replicated the famous Malcolm X picture(with him looking out the window with the Gat work) for his next album entitled “By All Means Necessary”! KRS has had an incredible career  and changed many peoples lives through music and lectures but his first offer into the Hip-Hop world can never be forgotten for the effect it had whether Positive or negative. Salute to the great and one of the building blocks for helping us ” Normal ” people to understand the Gangsta mentality. FANGGGGGGGGGGGGGGG!!!

CRIMINAL MINDED(courtesy of Wikipedia):

Criminal Minded by Boogie Down Productions is a highly influential hip hop album. Production on the LP is credited to ‘Blastmaster’ KRS-One (Lawrence Krisna Parker) and DJ Scott La Rock (Scott Sterling), but in future interviews it has been revealed that an uncredited Ced-Gee (Cedric Miller) of The Ultramagnetic MCs had a key role in crafting the sound of the LP.

Released in early 1987, the album sampled records from James Brown and AC/DC, and also flaunted a dancehall reggae influence. The songs “South Bronx” and “The Bridge is Over” (a reference to the QueensbridgeHousing Projects) ignited a famous rivalry with the Queens-bred emcee MC Shan (see the The Bridge Wars).

The album is also credited with providing a prototype for East Coast gangsta rap from which to develop. For instance, the cover, which showcases Parker and Sterling surrounded by an arsenal of weapons, was hip-hop’s first major release to feature members brandishing firearms. The album also contained several seminal hardcore songs such as “9mm Goes Bang,” one of the first hip-hop songs to be based around a first-person crime narrative, and “P Is Free,” which details an encounter with a drug-abusing prostitute for perhaps the first time on record.

The liner notes of Criminal Minded read, “peace to Ron Nelson and the Toronto posse”. This statement is evidence of BDP‘s involvement with Toronto’s underground hip hop scene in the late 80s, which produced artists such as Michie MeeDream Warriors and Maestro Fresh Wes.

The album is broken down extensively by KRS-One in Brian Coleman’s book Check the Technique.


Initially, the album sold at least several hundred thousand copies; however, the relationship between the group and B-Boy Records quickly deteriorated when the label (headed by Jack Allen and Bill Kamarra) was allegedly slow to pay royalties. A lawsuit was launched, which was eventually settled out-of-court. Having left B-Boy Records, new friend Ice-T introduced them to a Warner Bros. A&R exec, who promptly signed them to a new record deal. The deal was short-lived, however.

By this time, Sterling had befriended a neighborhood teenager, Derek “D-Nice” Jones, who did a human beatbox routine for the group. One evening, Jones was assaulted by some local hoodlums and he later called Sterling to run interference. The next day, Sterling and a group of others came to the stoop where the offending parties lived. Sterling’s intention was to try and mediate things, but one of the hoods pulled out a gun and began shooting at random. In the ensuing confusion, Sterling was hit in the neck. Critically wounded, he died an hour later in hospital, leaving behind an infant son.

Warner Bros. reneged on the new deal in the aftermath of Sterling’s death. Parker, however, decided that the group should continue. A handful of friends were brought into the collective, including Parker’s new wife Ms. Melodie and brother Kenny Parker, with whom he had just recently reunited. Signing with Jive/RCA Records, Parker recorded eight albums for that label in a 10-year period, eventually dropping the Boogie Down Productions moniker and billing himself as a solo performer. REM and others recruited him for collaborations, and he was among the few hip-hop acts at the Beastie Boys’ Tibetan Freedom Concerts.

Meanwhile, Criminal Minded has been notoriously hard to find, falling in and out of print every few years, surfacing with a different distributor every time. Currently, the Boston-based independent label LandSpeed Records has landed the distribution rights to Criminal Minded, hence re-release in 2002. An expanded re-release titled The Best of B-Boy Records: Boogie Down Productions includes longer versions of the albums tracks and several 12-inch singles that didn’t make Criminal Minded’s original pressing. The album was re-released again in 2006—original art intact—when LandSpeed became Traffic Entertainment Group.


In 1998, the album was selected as one of The Source’s 100 Best Rap Albums .

In 2003, the album was ranked number 444 on Rolling Stone magazine’s list of the 500 greatest albums of all time.

Vibe (12/99, p. 157) – Included in Vibe’s 100 Essential Albums of the 20th Century.

Vibe (6/02, p. 108) – Ranked #3 in Vibe’s “Top 10 rap albums.”

Track List

1. Poetry

2. South Bronx

3. 9mm Goes Bang

4. Word From Our Sponsor

5. Elementary

6. Dope Beat

7. Remix for P Is Free

8. Bridge Is Over

9. Super Hoe

10. Criminal Minded