(Photo: Al Pereira/Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images)
Last Tuesday (March 26) marked the anniversary of one of hip hop's greatest losses. Eazy-E, who died unexpectedly from what doctors said were complications of the AIDS virus, was widely heralded as "The Godfather of Gangsta Rap," yet even that is an understatement.
As the co-founder of Ruthless Records and the architect behind N.W.A., Eazy built the foundation for the West Coast to become a hip hop powerhouse. Additionally, he was the prototype of the modern day hip hop hustler. Yet, even with all of that, his life and legacy continue to go overlooked and underappreciated. Eighteen years later, his daughter hopes to change that.
"A lot of people don't know the truth behind his death," Eazy's daughter, recording artist E.B. Wright, tells BET.com. "There's definitely a story out there of how people think he died but a lot of it is a misconception, so I think it's time to tell the story of exactly what happened."
With her documentary, titled A Ruthless Scandal, E.B. will focus on Eazy's sudden and untimely death while also uncovering never before heard stories from some of Eazy's closest friends and family. E.B., who is currently 22 years old, was only four when her father passed, but in the ensuing years following his death, learned just what he meant to an industry that has become a multi-billion dollar pop culture juggernaut. Still, to her, he was just Dad.
"[At the time of his death] it was really weird to me because he's not here, but then friends, celebrities as well as just everyday people, are constantly telling me stories about him."
While there have been other documentaries made about Eazy, E.B. promises this one will go more in depth and have more interviews than any made previously.
"I'm going to have interviews with everyone; his former [NWA] group members, business associates, friends, doctors, lawyers, court papers will all be in there. Everything that was involved [in his death] is going to be a part of the documentary."
Like many West Coast die-hards, E.B. feels that her father still does not get the respect he deserves for paving the way, not only for other rappers, but also for today's urban impresarios to capitalize on what is now a global phenomenon.
"He started all of this, and honestly I don't even think his impact can be limited to the West Coast," notes E.B. "I feel like, if my dad was alive today, he would be Jay-Z businesswise. He was a true visionary. He started the independent label, he started the idea of speaking your mind and I definitely don't think that his legacy is represented. And hopefully I can change that."
Although she can't name names until everything is confirmed, E.B. promises big names and big surprises for A Ruthless Scandal, which is currently scheduled to come out sometime in 2014.
It looks to be a busy year for E.B. Wright, who is quickly becoming a mini mogul herself. In addition to overseeing the documentary, she is also in the process of finishing her debut album (the first single, "What I Wanna Do," is already out) and will soon have her own reality show.
Guess the apple doesn't fall far from the tree.
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