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Da Youngstas

Background information
Also known as Illy Funkstaz
Origin Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, U.S.
Genres East Coast hip hop, Hip hop, Hardcore rap
Years active 1992-1995
Labels Pop Art Records
East West America/Atlantic Records
Former members
Taj Mahal
Qu'ran aka Q-Ball
Tarik aka Rick Geez

Da Youngstas were a hip-hop trio that consisted of two brothers, Taji "Taj Mahal" Goodman and Qu'ran Goodman, and their cousin Tarik Dawson, hailing from Philadelphia.

The Goodman brothers are the sons of Lawrence "LG" Goodman, CEO of Pop Art Records and one of Philadelphia hip-hop's founding fathers.




Late years

Da Youngstas' debut album, 1992's Somethin' 4 Da Youngstas was unfortunately overshadowed by the explosive success of their kiddie counterparts Kris Kross. However, the trio was able to garner a strong reputation in hip hop's underground due to the fact that, unlike similar child acts of the day, they wrote their own lyrics.

Its second album, 1993's The Aftermath, featured grand influences from Das EFX and Onyx, as Da Youngstas boasted a more aggressive and dexterous rhyming style and had production support from some of hip hop's heavyweights such as DJ Premier, The Beatnuts, Marley Marl, and Pete Rock. Hardcore tracks like "Wild Child" and "Crewz Pop" won them a bigger following; notably, Qu'ran began producing beats for the song "Da Hood," foreshadowing a future career as a producer. Some of the songs on the album had been directed to Kris Kross in songs Crewz Pop and Lyrical Stick Up Kids due to the beef they had going on with the group.

Da Youngstas' third album, 1994's No Mercy, is often regarded as its best. It contains the group's most successful single, "Hip Hop Ride," a sunny ode to hip hop music, which peaked at #21 on the Hot Rap Singles charts and #68 on the Billboard Hot 100. This time, most of the production work was left to Marley Marl, K-Def & Dante "Destro" Barton.

The group released its final album in 1995 I'll Make You Famous that found them referring to themselves as the Illy Funkstaz, a nickname the group had used sporadically during its last two albums. It contained the Mobb Deep-featured single "Bloodshed and War." The album was the least successful of the group's releases, and nothing has been heard from the group ever since.

Recent years

Qu'ran has continued in the industry as a producer, most recently co-producing one of the tracks for Amerie's album Because I Love It.

Taj Mahal is currently embarking on a solo career, releasing a video for "Gingerbread Man" as a promotional tool for his upcoming solo debut. As for Tarik Dawson, little to nothing has been heard of him since the group's last album.



Year Title Chart positions[1]
Heatseekers Billboard 200 Top R&B/Hip hop albums
1992 Somethin 4 Da Youngsta's - - -
1993 The Aftermath #4 #126 #25
1994 No Mercy - - #45
1995 I'll Make U Famous - - -


Year Title Chart positions[2] Album
Hot rap singles Hot R&B/Hip hop songs Hot Dance singles Billboard Hot 100
1992 "Pass da Mic" #10 - - - Somethin 4 Da Youngsta's
1993 "Iz U With Me" #9 - - - The Aftermath
"Crewz Pop" #3 #59 #26 -
1994 "Hip Hop Ride" #21 #62 #21 #68 No Mercy
1995 "Mad Props" #36 - #19 -
"I'll Make U Famous" - - - - I'll Make U Famous


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