"Bone Thugs-N-Harmony" is an American hip hop group from the Glenville section of Cleveland, Ohio. They are best known for their fast-paced, aggressive rapping style and harmonizing vocals. The group was mainly produced by Los Angeles producer, DJ U-Neek. In 1997, the group was awarded the Grammy Award for Best Rap Performance with their song "Tha Crossroads" from their E. 1999 Eternal Album. Since its conception in the early 1990s the group has been honored with numerous other awards. Bone Thugs-N-Harmony are also the only artists to do acts with 2Pac, The Notorious B.I.G., Big Pun, and Eazy-E while they were still alive.
==="Faces of Death"===
Formed in the early 1990s, the group consisted of four members: Krayzie Bone, Bizzy Bone, Layzie Bone and Wish Bone. In 1991 Flesh-N-Bone joined the group. Their first album, "Faces of Death", was recorded in 1993 under the name B.O.N.E. Enterprise. Their career took off after heading to Los Angeles in search of famous producer and N.W.A. member Eazy-E. In hopes of securing a record deal, the group was given an audition over the phone receiving an unfulfilled promise from Eazy-E to call them back. Discovering that Eazy-E was performing back in their hometown of Cleveland, the group took a charter bus back hoping to have another chance, this time in person. The chance was given backstage as they auditioned, which resulted in them signing a contract with Ruthless Records.
==="Creepin on ah Come Up"===
Released in June 1994, the EP "Creepin on ah Come Up", was Bone Thugs-n-Harmony's debut with Ruthless Records and their first introduction into super stardom. After a slow start that saw the album's success limited to gangsta rap audiences, it broke through to the mainstream with the release of the singles "Thuggish Ruggish Bone" and "Foe tha Love of $," the second of which featured a verse by Eazy-E. The sound was raw and explicit, while the lyrics were violent and aggressive. Songs poured out feelings of anger against society for growing up on the violent and economically oppressed streets of Cleveland. Videos for the mega hits "Foe tha Love of $" and "Thuggish Ruggish Bone" increased the group's reputation among audiences. Beats were supplied by Kenny McCloud, Rhythm D, DJ Yella, and newcomer DJ U-Neek. The album was later certified 2x Platinum by the RIAA selling 2 million copies in the United States.
==="E. 1999 Eternal"===
While "Creepin' On Ah Come Up"s subject matter was focused almost entirely on violent criminal activity, "E. 1999 Eternal" saw Bone diversify its content and musical stylings. It debuted at #1 with 307,000 copies sold in its first week. The G-Funk style beats were smoothed by DJ U-Neek (with co-production from Tony Cowan and Kenny McCloud). The singles 1st Of Tha Month and Tha Crossroads were both huge successes, the second of which which reached #1 on the Billboard Hot 100. A considerable portion of the album's concept was built upon violent subject matter, yet Bone proved its ability to incorporate deeper themes, as its songs dealt with more spirituality and occult mysticism. "E. 1999 Eternal" also introduced Bone's trademark tracks devoted entirely to the use of marijuana. One of the group's more commercially successful albums, it has sold over 4 million copies in the United States, and 10 million copies worldwide.
==="The Art Of War"===
In 1997, the group released the double-disc set "The Art of War", backed by the single "Look into My Eyes", which also appeared on the soundtrack of the film "Batman & Robin". The album saw Bone further explore a wide variety of subjects and styles, with even more focus on God and family and an overall more ambient, mellow sound. The group still incorporated violent lyrics, though, with a large portion of the album dedicated to what they labeled "clones" who claimed Bone had stolen their quick-tongued rapping style and vice-versa. The Chicago-based rap group Crucial Conflict
was targeted by name, with indirect disses thought to be aimed at Twista, Three 6 Mafia, and Do or Die. The album also included "Thug Luv" with Tupac Shakur. The album is also influenced by the book of the same name by author Sun Tzu. "The Art of War" philosophy is littered throughout the album. While the album had initial success, debuting at #1 on the Billboard 200 (with 394,000 copies sold in the first week). "Look Into My Eyes" (which charted at #4 on the Billboard Hot 100), the only other single was "If I Could Teach the World", which won an American Music Award, but other songs on the album like "Body Rott" and "Thug Luv" received airplay from popularity. The group's efforts were though dampened by the absence of Bizzy Bone from the album's videos and large portions of the ensuing tour and public appearances. This absence fueled rumors of a break-up. The album was certified 4x Platinum by the RIAA, with each disc counted. The album sold 4,600,000 copies in the U.S.
In 2000, Bone delivered BTNHResurrection, their first group album to prominently feature Flesh-n-Bone, whose presence was limited on previous releases because he had never signed with the group's label Ruthless Records. With Flesh-n-Bone appearing on fourteen of the album's sixteen songs, Krayzie Bone and Wish Bone took a lesser role, appearing on nine and eight songs, respectively. The album's first half featured a slew of hardcore and dark tracks, with the second half being considerably more introspective and soft. The album also featured one of the group's biggest singles, "Resurrection (Paper, Paper) in which only reached Bubbling Under Hot 100 Singles at #126.
Shortly before the album's release, Flesh-n-Bone was arrested and the group again began having public disputes with Bizzy Bone, having missed out on the promotional tour and appearances. The album debuted at #2 on the charts, selling 283,000 copies in its first week, but again the group ran into problems with staying power. The three singles from the album all failed to crack the Billboard Hot 100 and the big-budget video for "Change the World" failed to receive any rotation. The album was certified Platinum by the RIAA selling a total of 2,515,000 copies.
==="Thug World Order"===
In 2000, member Flesh-n-Bone was sentenced to eleven years in prison for threatening a neighbor with an AK-47. In late 2001, the group returned to the studio to record their next release thanks to Rick "Double R" Robinson (Bizzy Bone's manager at the time) and Steve Lobel (Layzie Bone's manager at the time). By February 2002, the album was complete and turned out to be their last release on Ruthless Records. Thug World Order sold 440,000 copies in the United States, remaining uncertified.
"Thug Stories", Bone Thugs-n-Harmony's sixth album, was recorded on Koch Records and released in September 2006. It marked the first time Bone Thugs-n-Harmony recorded as a trio for a full album, as troubled former member Bizzy Bone was finally ousted. This album was the group's first full-release since 2002's "Thug World Order". "Thug Stories" sold 38,000 in its first week and peaked at #25 on the Billboard 200 and #1 on the Independent Chart. The album featured a slightly more mature style and the group leaned heavily towards its harmonic roots than its "thug" origins. It has since sold over 100,000 units despite having no singles, official videos or radio play. There was a tour to accompany the albums release, however.
==="Strength & Loyalty"===
Originally to be called "The Bone Thugs Story", Strength & Loyalty was released on May 8, 2007. Being their first major album after an absence of nearly five years, the album debuted at #2 on the Billboard 200 and #1 on iTunes and the Billboard Urban Music charts. The album contains guest appearances by Mariah Carey, The Game, will.i.am, Akon, Twista, Bow Wow, Yolanda Adams, and Felecia. Fleetwood Mac's "The Chain" is sampled strongly for "Wind Blow."
Producers on the album included Swizz Beatz, Akon, DJ Toomp, Jermaine Dupri, will.i.am, and others. The executive producer of the album was Swizz Beatz. Bone's video "I Tried" (Directed by ) was launched on March 7, 2007, their first single from the album "Strength and Loyalty", followed by the second single "Lil Love".
This album and Bone were nominated for the "Favorite Album" (Rap/Hip-Hop) and "Favorite Band/Group" (Rap/Hip-Hop) on American Music Awards 2007 Bone Thugs-n-Harmony won the award for favorite Band/Group. As of September 2008, it has sold over 900,000 copies in the United States.
"T.H.U.G.S." is an album featuring previously unreleased Bone Thugs-n-Harmony songs that didn't make the final cut of "BTNHResurrection" and "Thug World Order" albums. It was released on November 13, 2007 by their former record label, Ruthless Records. The sole single off the album is entitled "Young Thugs", which is accompanied by a newly-filmed music video featuring Krayzie, Layzie, Bizzy and Wish.
==I Tried (The Bone Thugs Movie)==
Bone has also released a movie titled (directed by Rich Newey), which was originally named "What If..." The topic of the movie is how different the lives of Krayzie, Layzie and Wish would have been if they never have met Eazy E. The cover of the DVD is on their . The movie was released in stores on September 25th of 2007. All three current members did an interview with DJBooth.net to talk about the project.It has since became a platinum selling Dvd.
In November 2007, Layzie Bone confirmed that he had completed the "Bone Brothers III" album with Bizzy Bone, spurring speculation of a full Bone reunion. In a recent video interview, Krayzie Bone stated that they all wanted to reunite but that record label issues may prevent an official reunion. Bizzy Bone had attended a recent Bone Thugs performance and he and the three current members had a "good conversation".
After nearly a decade of incarceration, Flesh-n-Bone was released from prison on July 13th of 2008 and was soon photographed with all four other members. The reunited Bone Thugs-n-Harmony have reportedly been seen in studio working together for the first time in many years. In a recent interview, Bizzy confirmed his return to the group, spurred by Flesh's release and Layzie Bone's diplomacy; the five are indeed now working on a new studio album, having recorded 10-20 tracks out of a possible 100-200. Producers are set to include LP Dogg, Krayzie Bone, Damon Elliott (son of Dionne Warwick), Anthony Cowan a.k.a. Tony C, Scott Storch, and possibly Dr. Dre and Akon.
==Style and technique==
Known mostly for their flow rather than lyricism, Bone's style and technique can be described as melodic, yet dark, rapid-fire and aggressive. Their flow is often interwoven at a high speed melodic pace or slow harmonic pace. They also tend to ride the beat that they're rapping over. Sometimes there are very few choruses separating their verses from one another. In the beginning, circa "Faces of Death", Bone used a pseudo-Jamaican patois delivery with their trademark style, though they rarely do this now. Bone's subject matter has both spiritual and occult undertones (e.g., "Hell Sent", "Intro", "Mr. Ouija", "Mr. Ouija 2" and "Da Introduction"). At first, their subject matter was almost always exclusively about violence and smoking marijuana. Today, however, their subject matter includes other topics such as urban socio-political issues and religion. Besides minor changes to subject matter and sound, their lyrical style, locution, and overall methodology remain intact.
The group has had strong sales success, selling 22.5 million records in the United States, and over 40 million records worldwide.
Referenced from Wikipedia: Bone Thugs-n-Harmony