"EXCLUSIVE-- SPIGG NICE SPEAKS OUT"
by: Jaime A. Davidson
1. WHY DO THEY CALL YOU SPIGG-NICE?
It all started out in High School (John Adams). Think back to the TV show
Lavern & Shirley, a few individuals said that I favored the character "Squiggy," for being short in size, but still yet, fast and funny. Nice sprouted from my superior swagger, and in character ethics. I was always one to be cordial to people, yet considered Nice at everything I've done. In light of these rare traits, a thought descended upon Mr. Cheeks and he said, "Yo, I'm going to call you "SPIGG-NICE!" And, that's how my name came to fruition.
2. HOW DID THE GROUP COME UP WITH THE NAME, "THE LOST BOYZ?"
We had always considered ourselves boys, from growing up in the same neighborhood (Queens, New York), and doing music collaborations. Lost came into fruition due to the industry doors being closed, which left the skills of each member and the unique sound undiscovered and falling on deaf ears. But, once those pearly gates opened up, I then decided to be a bit more innovative and change Boys with an "S" to Boyz with a "Z," because our talents and sound had no equal.
3. HOW DID THE HIT SONG "RENEE" COME TO FRUITION?
In 19-- on Christmas day at a phone booth, a young lady named "EBONY" from the "40 PROJECTS" in Queens was hit by a stray bullet. When this devastating news reached our group, it was decided to compose a song in memory of a lady who had truly enriched one's existence to a height that was invigorating. But, instead of using her actual name--, we had decided to substitute her name with the hit song "RENEE!" May Ebony rest in peace and I would like for her family and friends to know this, that her living wasn't in vain and the world would always remember her through"RENEE."
4. SINCE YOUR INCARCERATION, HAVE YOU RECEIVED ANY SUPPORT FROM THE GROUP?
Yes and No! Rahlou (aka "Pretty Lou"), continues to assist me spiritually, psychologically and economically, as much as possible. The "QUEEN" of the "LB'Z, Queen Josephine," has also been there in my corner to support me. But, on the other hand, Mr. Cheeks and Jay Raff (our road manager), including our manager (Charles Suitt), has been missing in action....
5. SPIGG, IT SOUNDS TO ME LIKE YOU ARE BITTER WITH MR. CHEEKS, BUT WHY?
I considered Cheeks to be more than a friend, like a brother. Remember when he was going to shoot the video in Miami, for "LIGHTS, CAMERA, ACTION?" He called me and requested my presence, because he knew that I had his best interest at heart and would push him to the pinnacle. I declined because he knew that I was using all my funds to finish my "SOLO ALBUM," but yet still, Cheeks wanted me to use my own money to fly into Miami. I wasn't feeling that move. Now, for him not to make an effort to assist me mentally and financially, much less contact my family to show some type of concern, is truly trifling (and left me sullen). I really can't say that his presence would have changed the outcome of my trial, but his voice on the airwaves and in the streets could have rallied enough supporters to have tipped the scale in my favor. I'm not just speaking of a not guilty verdict. More like a psychological and emotional security that would cloak one during the times of crisis. Accordingly, I stayed humble and loyal to the group and Mr. Cheeks all these years and continued to play my position in a multitude of ways..., but, those same virtuous qualities weren't reciprocated, because he always wanted to be in the lime light and said that we weren't ready for the spot light yet!
6. YOU MENTIONED FINANCIAL SUPPORT. HAS YOUR RESOURCES BEEN DEPLETED?
Yes! When one is a novice of the intrinsic aspects of the music industry, especially contracts, it opens the door for exploitation, cut throat and back stabbing. Pretty Lou and myself, ended up with the short end of the stick; by not being listed on the contracts as individuals, only as a group, "The Lost Boyz." The culprit in this matter is Mr. Cheeks's former manager, Charles Suitt (of Universal Records), who deprived us of our contractual rights, royalties and publishing, etc. As members of the group, my pay would range from $250.00 to $500.00 per show, while the full payments-- often times exceeded my share next to twenty times; yet, I would still receive this miniscule amount. So, in all actuality, now you tell me, who went to the bank smiling and who robbed who?
7. DO OTHERS HOLD YOUR SENTIMENTS ABOUT THIS WHOLE SITUATION?
Let's just say, Mr. Cheeks can't even go back to the neighborhood without sneaking in, as a villain does during the night. On several occasions the hood demonstrated where the love and respect had deteriorated, by vandalizing his car a few times at the local mall (J.A.). His actions toward the group only gave the public added ammunition. Mr. Cheeks's absence at Freeky Tah's funeral, truly upset a large number of people. But again, by me being in tuned with the streets, that was enough to keep the blood hounds off his neck. And, just look at that thanks that I was dished out.
8. WHAT ADVICE WOULD YOU OFFER THOSE EAGER TO BE AN ENTERTAINER?
First and foremost, one must be aware that the music industry is a complex society which has its own rules, teachings and philosophies, etc. It seems like the fruit of dissension and the wealth of chaos, has become the intrinsic's for love, happiness and serenity within. So, that's why many people have become accustomed to unscrupulous methods, such as manipulation, deceit and lies, etc., that's now a social norm. It's evident to me that, truth, love and loyalty, has fallen victims to capitalism, i.e., $! If anyone desires to be a musician/artist..., don't rush into any contracts without a lawyer present. Secondly, demand individual contracts if you are a group; protect your rights, and don't forget to invest your proceeds wisely, no matter how minute your cut might be... for it's truly a diabolical industry.
1 LUV ... SPIGG-NICE, LOST BOYZ FAM 4-LIFE!!!
Meet Author Jaime A. Davidson