Already being hailed as a must-have for the collectors out there, Wax Poetics celebrates its 20th anniversary with their latest issue. Issue 2 features rap icons Gang Starr on the front cover, and disco funk trailblazers Labelle on the back cover. You’ll also find a gorgeous photo spread from music photographer Jean-Marie Perier, an in-depth look at Manchester’s experimental post-punk group A Certain Ratio, a retrospective of Miles Davis’s distinctive fashion style, the inside story of hip-hop cornerstone Tommy Boy from its president Monica Lynch, and much more. This marks a real return to the depth and variety that Wax Poetics is famous for.
A Certain Ratio
Patta x Ge-ology
FRONT COVER: GANG STARR
Released as one of the last shots of true NYC underground before the oncoming wave of hip-hop commercialism, Hard to Earn was an artistic rebirth that came as Gang Starr was cresting, an intense batch of fresh material that felt like a deliberate growth spurt. “Moment of Truth is probably our most important album,” says DJ Premier, “but Hard to Earn is my favorite Gang Starr album.”
BACK COVER: LABELLE
As the 1960s faded away and the ’70s shattered the veneer of innocence, three talented singers—Patti LaBelle, Nona Hendryx, and Sarah Dash—shed their BlueBelles name, swapped their floor-length dresses in favor of denim, and reinvented themselves as a gritty soul trio. Over the course of six albums in six years, Labelle continued to grow, transforming into fierce and funky pop stars in wild costumes, and ultimately ascended to ubiquity with their Allen Toussaint–produced megahit “Lady Marmalade.”