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ICP cohort Legz Diamond fires his own "Pistolas"

For Journal Register Newspapers

» See more SOUND CHECK

The "original idea" for a solo album by longtime Insane Clown Posse associate Legz Diamond popped up in 1996, shortly after the guitarist started working with the rap duo.

It just took awhile to get its, well, legz. [cq]

Last month Diamond (real name Rich Murrell) released "9 Pistolas," backed by the Purple Gang (Jumpsteady and Sugar Slam), produced by ICP's Violent J and Shaggy 2 Dope and released on the group's Psychopathic Records label. All good things, they say, come to those who wait.

"It was just good timing," says the Detroit-born Diamond, 48, who played with George Clinton's progeny in Sons of Funkenstein and in the rock band Coup Detroit before becoming part of the ICP posse with 1995's "Riddle Box." The reason we never got around to (the album) is because working with ICP, we're just so busy all of the time. We always thought just about ICP.

"Finally, there was a slot after we finished (2012's) 'The Mighty Death Pop!' A few things changed and the window of opportunity opened and the karma was good, the energy was right and we just raced in and did this."

Diamond and company recorded "9 Pistolas," which features guest appearances by Bushwick Bill and Cold 187um," in three weeks at Violent J's Cabin in the Woods studio in Farmington Hills. The songs were composed in the studio, and the result is an album with a loose and highly musical good-time vibe that sounds different from anything that's ever been part of the Psychopathic family before.

"I think it's a fun record -- good for riding with, cruising in your car," says Violent J. "I think some Juggalos might be a little confused by it because it's not wicked rap coming at you right in the face. It's not about anger or terror or horror. It's just about chillin' and good hooks -- and the singing is on-key!"

Diamond does feel that there's a bit of an edgy undercurrent to "9 Pistolas' " lyrics, but he notes that, "I think that's art at its best, when you can present something that might be kind of distasteful but in a way that's pleasing to the ear. If you can present it with a smooth gloss but still some edge to the undertone there, it's a little more compelling."

Diamond, who resides with his wife about 250 miles from Detroit in northern Michigan, will be playing songs from "9 Pistolas" during ICP's upcoming tour and hopes to find some time to "branch it out into its own thing" as well. Meanwhile, he's already thinking about his second solo album -- and doesn't plan to take 17 years to get that one out.

"You know how it goes -- once you get something in the can, you get all kinds of great ideas for the next one," he says. "I've got it half done in my head already. I'm very excited about continuing the saga." -- Gary Graff

Send your thoughts and comments to Gary Graff


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