Junior M.A.F.I.A.

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Junior M.A.F.I.A.
OriginBrooklyn, New York
GenresHip hop
Years active1994-1997
2005-2007
LabelsUndeas /Atlantic Records - Mega Media Records
Associated actsSean "Diddy" Combs<
Members
Lil' Cease
MC KleptoBanger
Nino Brown
Past members
The Notorious B.I.G. (deceased)
Lil' Kim
Chico Del Vec
Blake C
Capone
Bugsy
 
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Junior M.A.F.I.A.
OriginBrooklyn, New York
GenresHip hop
Years active1994-1997
2005-2007
LabelsUndeas /Atlantic Records - Mega Media Records
Associated actsSean "Diddy" Combs<
Members
Lil' Cease
MC KleptoBanger
Nino Brown
Past members
The Notorious B.I.G. (deceased)
Lil' Kim
Chico Del Vec
Blake C
Capone
Bugsy

Junior M.A.F.I.A. was an American hip hop group from Bedford-Stuyvesant, Brooklyn, New York. The acronym M.A.F.I.A. stands for Masters At Finding Intelligent Attitudes. They were formed and mentored by New York rapper, The Notorious B.I.G., in the early 1990s and released their debut album, Conspiracy in 1995. The success of the group's singles, "Player's Anthem" (US #13) and "Get Money" (US #17) helped launch the career of Lil' Kim as a solo artist. The group became defunct in 1997 following the death of The Notorious B.I.G. In 2005 and 2006, three of the original members released the album Riot Musik and two DVDs under the Junior M.A.F.I.A. name.

Contents

History

Formation

The members of Junior M.A.F.I.A. met as childhood friends of The Notorious B.I.G. All the members were under the age of twenty when the group was formed. The group was composed of three separate groups and two individual artists. The 6s, or 666, (Lil' Caesar, Bugsy, Capone, Chico, and Nino Brown) who claim to know right from wrong and practice it; the Sixes knew Biggie before he was rapping (the other members other than Lil' Kim were added on to the group but still were very close to Biggie). The Snakes (cousins Larceny and Trife) who represent the enraged attitude expressed in a large number of America’s youth, MC Klepto, who offered insight on a life of “boostin' and hustlin'”, and Lil' Kim, (a.k.a Big Momma or The Lieutenant), the only female in the group, who showed the ghetto life from a woman’s point of view. The Notorious B.I.G. acted as the "godfather" to the group.[1]

Debut

The group released their debut album, Conspiracy, in 1995, under the NYC-based Big Beat Records and Undeas labels. The album was produced in a similar style to The Notorious B.I.G.'s debut, Ready to Die "successful[ly] [replicating]... the earlier record's strengths".[2] B.I.G. featured on four of the album’s tracks. The rhyme topics were hard-hitting, mostly addressing guns, money, and sex. The album featured production by DJ Clark Kent, EZ Elpee, Daddy-O, Akshun, and Special Ed. Conspiracy gained some positive reviews, but received criticism for some of its group members not showing enough individuality.[2] It debuted at number eight on the U.S. Billboard 200 chart and was certified gold.

The lead single “Player’s Anthem”, produced by DJ Clark Kent, and featuring The Notorious B.I.G., went gold. The accompanying video showed the group flying on helicopters and Learjets whilst carrying out business under F.B.I. surveillance. The album also spawned the popular top twenty hit "Get Money", a duet featuring The Notorious B.I.G. and Lil' Kim, and its remix "Gettin' Money", which has Lil' Cease with B.I.G. & Lil' Kim. The single was certified platinum and helped Kim start her own solo career.[3] "I Need You Tonight" (featuring Aaliyah) was the only single released from the album that did not feature The Notorious B.I.G. The music video featured the members and Aaliyah holding a house party at Kim's house while she was away.

Post-Conspiracy

After the death of the Notorious B.I.G. in 1997, the crew became defunct. In an interview with the Notorious B.I.G., which was conducted in 1995 but appeared in a 2003 issue of XXL Magazine, he claimed he was planning to retire from rap music in the year 2000 to manage the careers of Junior M.A.F.I.A. In 2005, three of the previous seven members of the group, Lil' Cease, MC Klepto and Larceny (now known as Banger), released an album entitled Riot Musik under the Junior M.A.F.I.A. name, however the album failed to match their previous success, only making it to #61 on the Billboard R&B/Hip-Hop albums chart and #50 on the Top Independent albums chart. On March 26, 2007, the trio released another album entitled Die Anyway, however it did not make it on any album charts.

Solo careers

Lil' Kim continued her rise and went on to become a successful artist in her own right, releasing four albums as a solo artist. The M.A.F.I.A. were referenced on her debut album, Hard Core, on the song "M.A.F.I.A. Land" and featured on "Fuck You". Kim collaborated with Lil' Cease on her single "Crush On You (Remix)". Lil' Cease's solo effort The Wonderful World of Cease A Leo was released in 1999 peaked at #26 on the Billboard 200. The lead single, "Play Around", featured Bristal, Lil' Kim and Puff Daddy and peaked at #9 on the Billboard Hot Rap Singles chart.

Compilations and conflict

In 2004, The Best of Junior M.A.F.I.A (Cleopatra) was released, as well as a DVD directed by documentary filmmaker, April Maiya, titled Chronicles of Junior M.A.F.I.A; a candid documentary dealing with the controversy and conspiracies surrounding The Notorious B.I.G and the Junior M.A.F.I.A. It included unreleased footage of studio sessions and home videos of life with the Notorious B.I.G. and his crew. The DVD release included a free mix-tape. A follow-up DVD without the original Director was titled The Chronicles of Junior M.A.F.I.A. Part II: Reloaded was scheduled to be released in 2005, but was halted when Lil' Kim filed a $6 million lawsuit against Lil’ Cease, claiming she never granted permission for her name and image to be used.[4]

Lil' Cease and Banger (formerly known as Larceny) testified against Lil' Kim during a perjury trial in 2005, which resulted in Kim and the group's manager, D-Roc, being sent to jail.[5][6] Following the case, Kim labeled the pair "snitches" on her 2005 album The Naked Truth. On June 27, 2006 a second DVD was released that was not as successful as its predecessor, entitled Reality Check: Junior Mafia vs Lil Kim. The DVD featured the pair explaining their side of the story on the case.

In 2007, "Chronicles of Junior MAFIA" Director, April Maiya, teamed with D-Roc for a follow-up tell-all documentary titled "Life After Death: The Movie." The film vindicated Lil Kim's convicted perjury and exposed facts behind Lil Cease and Banger being labeled as "snitches" in the perjury trial and Hot 97 shootout and corrected the shortcomings in the original 2004 release.

Discography

Studio albums

YearAlbum detailsPeak chart positionsCertifications
(sales threshold)
US
[7]
US R&B
[8]
US Indie
[9]
CAN
[10]
1995Conspiracy8264
2005Riot Musik
  • Release date: April 19, 2005
  • Label: Mega Media
6150
2007Die Anyway
  • Release date: March 26, 2007
  • Label: Street Danc Records
2011Coming Close to the Edge
  • To be released: May 12, 2011
  • Label: Atlantic Records
To be released
"—" denotes releases that did not chart

Compilation albums

YearAlbum details
2004The Best of Junior M.A.F.I.A.
  • Release date: June 22, 2004
  • Label: X-Ray Records

Singles

YearSinglePeak chart positionsCertifications
(sales threshold)
Album
US
[12]
US R&B
[13]
US Rap
[14]
NZ
[15]
UK
[16]
1995"Player's Anthem" (featuring The Notorious B.I.G.)137249Conspiracy
"I Need You Tonight" (featuring Aaliyah)431266
1996"Get Money" (featuring The Notorious B.I.G.)17413563
"—" denotes releases that did not chart

Filmography

References

  1. ^ Conspiracy Tower Records. Retrieved on 2006-12-16
  2. ^ a b Conspiracy > Overview allmusic. Retrieved on 2006-12-16
  3. ^ Lane, Lynda Junior M.A.F.I.A. > Overview Allmusic. Retrieved on 2007-03-11
  4. ^ Lil' Kim Hits Lil' Cease With $6 Million Suit MTV News 2005-07-19. Retrieved on 2008-06-27
  5. ^ Lil' Cease Says He's No Snitch for Testifying Against Kim MTV News 2005-03-21. Retrieved on 2006-12-16.
  6. ^ Metro Briefing | New York: Manhattan: Testimony Against Lil' Kim NY Times 2005-03-08. Retrieved on 2006-12-16.
  7. ^ "Junior M.A.F.I.A. Album & Song Chart History: Billboard 200". Billboard. http://www.billboard.com/#/artist/junior-m-a-f-i-a/chart-history/138828?f=305&g=Albums. Retrieved 2010-08-01. 
  8. ^ "Junior M.A.F.I.A. Album & Song Chart History: R&B/Hip-Hop Albums". Billboard. http://www.billboard.com/#/artist/junior-m-a-f-i-a/chart-history/138828?f=333&g=Albums. Retrieved 2010-08-01. 
  9. ^ "Junior M.A.F.I.A. Album & Song Chart History: Independent Albums". Billboard. http://www.billboard.com/#/artist/junior-m-a-f-i-a/chart-history/138828?f=326&g=Albums. Retrieved 2010-08-01. 
  10. ^ "Results - RPM - Library and Archives and Canada: Top Albums/CDs". RPM. http://www.collectionscanada.gc.ca/rpm/028020-110.01-e.php?PHPSESSID=gsg9c39cmpdlg1j49ae65f2hs5&q1=Junior+M.A.F.I.A.&q2=Top+Albums%2FCDs&interval=20. Retrieved 2010-08-02. 
  11. ^ "RIAA - Gold & Platinum - August 02, 2010: Junior M.A.F.I.A. certified albums". Recording Industry Association of America. http://www.riaa.com/goldandplatinumdata.php?table=SEARCH_RESULTS&artist=Junior%20M.A.F.I.A.&format=ALBUM&go=Search&perPage=50. Retrieved 2010-08-02. 
  12. ^ "Junior M.A.F.I.A. Album & Song Chart History: Hot 100". Billboard. http://www.billboard.com/#/artist/junior-m-a-f-i-a/chart-history/138828?f=379&g=Singles. Retrieved 2010-08-01. 
  13. ^ "Junior M.A.F.I.A. Album & Song Chart History: R&B/Hip-Hop Songs". Billboard. http://www.billboard.com/#/artist/junior-m-a-f-i-a/chart-history/138828?f=367&g=Singles. Retrieved 2010-08-01. 
  14. ^ "allmusic ((( Junior M.A.F.I.A. > Charts & Awards > Billboard Singles )))". Allmusic. http://www.allmusic.com/artist/p165563/charts-awards/billboard-singles. Retrieved 2010-08-02. 
  15. ^ "charts.org.nz - New Zealand chart portal". charts.org.nz. http://www.charts.org.nz/search.asp?search=Junior+M.A.F.I.A.&cat=s. Retrieved 2010-08-02. 
  16. ^ "Chart Stats - Junior M.A.F.I.A.". chartstats.com. http://www.chartstats.com/search.php?q=Junior+MAFIA. Retrieved 2010-08-02. 
  17. ^ a b "RIAA - Gold & Platinum - Junior M.A.F.I.A. certified singles". Recording Industry Association of America. http://www.riaa.com/goldandplatinumdata.php?table=SEARCH_RESULTS&artist=Junior%20M.A.F.I.A.&format=SINGLE&go=Search&perPage=50. Retrieved 2010-08-02. 

External links