Published May 30, 2014Rap fans know Ice Cube as one of the minds behind the controversial rap classic "Fuck tha Police," and kids know him as the star of family films like Are We There Yet? With such a diverse career, it's only fitting that the MC born O'Shea Jackson is the subject of this month's Timeline feature, which you can find in Exclaim! new print magazine.
The feature covers the 44-year-old gangsta rap pioneer's whole life. As you dive in and examine his influential, massively successful journey, here are five notable facts from the feature to get you started.
Five Noteworthy Facts You May Not Know About Ice Cube:
1. Ice Cube attended the same high school as some other famous rappers.
As a teen, Cube's parents pull him out of school in his high-crime neighbourhood and bus him to suburban Taft high school in the San Fernando Valley. He begins penning his nascent rhymes during keyboard class at the same alma mater as Eazy-E and House of Pain's Everlast, and begins to question why the drugs and violence destroying so many of his friends and neighbours aren't being eradicated.
2. If rap hadn't worked out, he could have had a career in architectural drafting.
Determined to carve a better life for himself, Jackson enrolls in the Phoenix Institute of Technology and earns a two-year diploma in architectural drafting.
3. Eazy-E nearly rejected the classic song "Boyz-n-the-Hood."
Cube raps the lyrics to "Boyz-n-the-Hood" for Eazy-E, who initially rejects the song before changing his mind, with Dre's encouragement, and deciding to put it on wax, the first of dozens of verses Cube would scribe for Eazy.
4. Ice Cube helped to make Chris Tucker's career.
"If you can write a record, you can write a movie," [filmmaker John] Singleton tells Cube. Inspired, Cube writes and stars in the cult classic Friday, which grosses $28 million on a $3.5 million budget and makes co-star Chris Tucker a hot commodity in Hollywood.
5. Ice Cube reconciled with Eazy-E shortly before the rapper's death, and the two discussed reuniting N.W.A.
Eazy-E dies in March, 1995, due to complications from AIDS, but not before running into Cube at the tunnel in New York City. "We ended up talking for two hours," Cube will tell Hot 97. "He was talking about, 'Let's get the group back together.' Two months later he got sick."