The greatness of Ol’ Dirty Bastard comes from one tactic, being raw. Being a “raw figure” in the culture of hip-hop has nothing to do with how hardcore, street savvy, or how impressionable your toughness appears to be. As lead by example by the “Shimmy Shimmy Ya” emcee, being raw is centered around being able to express your bare individuality without outer restraints attached.
In 1997, Ol’ Dirty Bastard sat down with MTV to discuss his rumored predicaments, which ended up being a premature personal interrogation that the legend smoothly bypassed falling victim too through his elevated responses.
You must have a three-dimensional ocular when watching this interview. While the average person will base their impression on O.D.B.’s stimulated and unadulterated persona, the open-minded viewer will recognize the depth of his intellect as he drops clairvoyant words of wisdom.
Josh Tyragiel, the interviewer of the classic unedited MTV interview (who is now the overseer of Vice News), is often darned for his disparaging FBI like questions as he touched on intimate topics such as Dirty’s relationship with his children, wife, and dealings with drugs and alcohol. Tyragiel was on a mission to gain a perhaps, emotionally fragmented response from the Wu brother, but instead, Dirty’s comical wit overwhelmed his shallow questions bringing forth aimless wisdom.
While recognizing his own imperfections along with welcoming acceptance, A Son Unique dropped essential life jewels, showcasing his abstract intelligence.
“Something about that red wine, brings out the brilliance,” the Brooklyn Zoo emcee unapologetically admits when asked about his drinking habit while also admitting he has been two months sober.
An original in his own divine right, Ol’ Dirty hones drops of sincerity in his eyes as he speaks about the importance of being present for the tour with his clan, the Wu-Tang Clan in the fashion of brotherly love.
“I know that my clan need me. They need me like I need them. Nah-mean. The world need me period. Word. ‘Cause I need the world.”
Remaining on an unapologetic wavelength, he goes on to admit that he is not used to interviews. The forced disposition to sit down with a stranger and “talk too much” was completely out of his league and he was not going to pretend as if it was. “…all this camera stuff man. You know, I ain’t really used to this stuff.” The legend goes on to say, “I’m used to it but then again, I’m not used to it. I’m used to being myself. You know, natural.”
When it comes to his relationship with Mariah Carey, he describes the songbird as his “heartbeat, my sugarplum.” The two made history in the world of Hip-Hop and Pop when they collaborated for Carey’s record-breaking hit “Fantasy.” “Mariah got a special genuine…she ain’t got to say nothing love,” Dirty lips with a sense of certainty.
Ol’ Dirty is a master at the art of humility. While giving major props to fellow Wu brother RZA, Dr. Dre, and Diddy-who went by Puffy at the time, the “Got Your Money” spitter tells how he would favor them or, just about anyone who was creating the most banging tracks to produce music for his next album, Nigga Please. “Dirty is going to bring back that light that you’ve been missing,” Osirus was not trying to spew out hateful energy, especially when in talks about his craft.
“I already got all the hip-hop fans. Hip-Hop belongs to me. Younah-mean? That ain’t no lie, cause I let it all out.”
This interview is a record of Ol’ Dirty Bastard in his most innocent and rawest form. Under the notion of exposing his obstacles, he managed to tuck away from the pain and bring forth a wealth of wisdom the masses were not ready to take in. The openness of his stance and goodwill seen in his eyes give away the legitimacy of his famed unadulterated persona. Such display is what made the untainted hip-hop icon relatable to hip-hop listeners all over the world.
“People be so bias about how people living, what people doing. Who cares about what people doing. People don’t understand what love is.” – O.D.B. jewel
Watch the classic, unedited Ol’ Dirty Bastard interview with MTV, below.