Monday, Jun 19 2006 | 13:12

Don’t call it a comeback. Boot Camp Click’s been here for years. In fact, with several revered releases last year, BCC’s presence is being felt more than ever. Duck Down unleashed three masterpieces onto the masses the past year. Sean Price dropped his long awaited “Monkey Bars”, an LP regarded by many as a classic and one of the year’s strongest independent efforts. Price garnered praise from XXL, and The Source Magazine as they all named him as their independent artist or album of the year for 2005, making Sean Price one of the hottest underground MC’s in the game. With “Monkey Bars” still peaking, Buckshot of Black Moon teamed up with Little Brother’s super Producer 9th Wonder for “Chemistry”, another critics’ favorite, Scratch Magazine called the album “Hip Hop Gold”. Last but not least, Smif N Wesson dropped their third solo offering “Reloaded”, to much fanfare as the album featured heavyweight appearances from Talib Kweli and Dead Prez.

Cemented is BCC’s legacy in the Hip-Hop annals. Spitting hardcore raps over dirty samples, the BCC comprised of Black Moon (Buckshot, DJ Evil Dee and 5ft.), Smif N Wesson (Tek & Steele), Heltah Skeltah (Ruck aka Sean Price and Rock) and O.G.C., (Louieville Sluggah, Starang Wondah and Top Dog) have epitomized New York Hip-Hop throughout their storied career. Just when the West Coast G Funk was becoming Hip-Hop’s choice sound, Brooklyn’s BCC individual groups lead the East Coast resurgence with a couple of releases, including legendary underground classics like Black Moon’s “Enter Da Stage” (1993) and Smif N Wesson’s “Da Shinning” (1995). A year later Heltah Skeltah released “Nocturnal”, which won the group New Artist of the Year by the Source Magazine, followed by O.G.C.’s debut “The Storm” (1997).

After unleashing several projects and building anticipation for a collective set, BCC released its debut LP “For The People” (March 1997) which went on to sell over 250,000 copies and an impressive 50,000 in it’s first week. The squad later followed with “Basic Training: The Best Of Boot Camp Clik” (2000) which showcased the groups rich history of under the radar hits. Included were Black Moon’s “I got You Opin”, “Who Got the Props”, “How Many MC’s”, Smif N Wessun’s “Bucktown” and “Soundbwoy Burial”, Fab 5’s “Leflah”, Heltah Skeltah’s “Operation Lockdown”, and the BCC’s classic collective “Head’s Aint Ready”. The Camp went on to release individual group sophomore projects.

Boot Camp quickly assembled to drop their sophomore release “The Chosen Few” (2002). The album’s artwork was created by none other than Marc Ecko himself of ECKO Clothing further endorsing the groups popularity amongst trendsetters within the Industry. Production credits included beats from The Alchemist, Hi-Tek, Beatminerz, & Bink.

Now, after over 3 million albums sold (Boot Camp-related projects) and countless classic releases, Boot Camp Clik is readying “The Last Stand”. The album features all 8 original members including Rock of Heltah Skeltah who was absent on “The Chosen Few”. With Da Beatminerz behind the boards as usual, the set also features outside production from some of the game’s most consistent producers. The stellar line-up, which features 9th Wonder, Pete Rock, Large Professor, Ill Mind and Marco Polo among others, is a testament to BCC’s relevance in the immediate Hip-Hop landscape. The CD will coincide with a supportive 30-city nationwide tour which will take the crew to New York, Atlanta, Philadelphia, Los Angeles, Chicago and Seattle among other cities. But don’t view this as the crew’s last release, far from it. Retirement is not an option.

“The reason we call it “The Last Stand” is because it’s the last position we will stand on and we will take on all this bullshit,” Buckshot explained. “We can’t stand it no more. That’s how we feel with the game, with music, with even ourselves.”

“The Last Stand” will also marks the return of Rock to the BCC fold. Yet, as Buck and Dru Ha, CEO of Duck Down, put it, the raspy voice lyricist never truly left. “Rock’s return is triumphant. He has really added on to the crew,” Buck declares emphatically. Dru adds, “He’s actually been in the fold for a minute now. From Duck Down’s perspective, we never had any animosity towards Rock. Basically I’m excited. I’m glad that he’s willing to come back.”

Though the crew has never reached commercial success by mainstream standards, BCC more than makes up for it in respect. Over the years, the Brooklynites have worked with and collaborated on songs with legends like, Tupac Shakur, Mary J Blige, Q-Tip, Busta Rhymes, Sean Diddy Combs, Wyclef, Raekwon, Method Man, Spike Lee and KRS-One just to name a few. Respect comes from all angles. As the crew was getting ready to take the independent turn, West Coast luminary Dr. Dre flew Dru and Buck to Los Angeles to cut several songs and contemplate a potential partnership. The crew had also previously worked on the “One Nation” album with Pac. Unfortunately, the CD was never released due to his untimely death. Several of the LP’s verses were gradually put onto other posthumous Pac released after his death. The album track “Military Mind” was eventually placed on 2002’s “Better Days”. The crew also participated on Pac’s poetry album “The Rose Vol.2”.

In addition to four albums, BCC members have made noteworthy appearances on soundtracks like “New Jersey Drive”, “Panther”, “Rhyme and Reason” and “Crooklyn”. “The Last Stand” is the first shot in another round of BCC-related projects, like Sean Price’s “Jesus Price” to drop this year.

Boot Camp Clik – The Last Stand Tour Dates:

7-11-06 – Cleveland, OH- Venue TBA
7-11-06 – Chicago, IL- Abbey Pub
7-13-06 – Ann Arbor, MI- Blind Pig
7-14-06 – Madison, WI- Annex
7-15-06 – Omaha, NE- Sokol
7-16-06 – Minneapolis, MN-7th St. Entry
7-19-06 – New York- Nokia Theatre
7-21-06 – Boulder, CO- Fox Theatre
7-22-06 – Salt Lake City, UT- Urban Lounge
7-23-06 – Boise, ID- Neurolux
7-24-06 – Seattle, WA- Chop Suey
7-25-06 – Portland, OR- Berbati’s
7-26-06 – Eugene, OR- Wow Hall
7-27-06 – Santa Cruz, CA- Catalyst
7-28-06 – San Francisco, CA- Slims
7-29-06 – Sacramento, CA- Venue TBA
7-30-06 – SLO, CA- SLO Brew
7-31-06 – San Diego, CA- Belly Up
8-01-06 – Los Angeles, CA- Dragonfly
8-02-06 – Phoenix, AZ- Venue TBA
8-03-06 – Albuquerque, NM- Sunshine
8-05-06 – Houston, TX- Warehouse Live
8-06-06 – Austin, TX- Emo’s
8-08-06 – Orlando, FL- The Social
8-09-06 – Orlando, FL- The Social
8-10-06 – Ft. Lauderdale, FL- Revolution
8-11-06 – Atlanta, GA- The Earl
8-12-06 – Carrboro, NC- Cats Cradle
8-13-06 – Asheville, NC- Orange Peel
8-15-06 – Charlottesville, VA- Starr Hill
8-16-06 – Philadelphia, PA- TLA
8-17-06 – Baltimore, MD- Sonar
8-18-06 – NY, NY- Knitting Factory
8-19-06 – Boston, MA- Harpers Ferry
8-20-06 – Burlington, VT- Higher Ground
8-21-06 – New Haven, CT- Toad’s Place

The album Boot Camp ClikThe Last Stand” (Duck Down) is going to be released July 14, 2006.

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