So you think that hip-hop had its start out in Queensbridge?
If you popped that junk up in the Bronx, you might not live!

KRS-One, “South Bronx,” from Boogie Down Productions’ Criminal Minded, 1987

Rebel, renegade, must stay paid.

KRS-One, “I’m Still #1,” from Boogie Down Productions’ By Any Means Necessary, 1990

I am the manifestation of study,
NOT the manifestation of money.
Therefore, I advance through thought,
NOT what’s manufactured and bought.

KRS-One, “Original Lyrics,” from Boogie Down Productions’ Edutainment, 1990

…Cops just surrounding me with pistols everywhere.
They put me in the backseat of their car handcuffed,
Pushed out them chests like they’re big rough and tough.
A cop come and said ‘You’ll never sell your guns now.’
I said ‘It doesn’t matter, you’ll sell them anyhow.
You take the guns from me, you sell them for a fee;
Anyway you put it, they’ll get in the city!’

KRS-One, “100 Guns,” from Boogie Down Productions’ Edutainment, 1990

I never ever ran from the Ku Klux Klan, and I shouldn’t have to run from a black man.

Kool Moe Dee, “Self-Destruction,” from Stop the Violence All-Stars’ Self Destruction, 1989

You got to have style, and learn to be original.

KRS-One, “My Philosophy,” from Boogie Down Productions’ By All Means Necessary, 1988

Teach the student what needs to be taught.
‘Cause black and white kids both take shorts
When one doesn’t know about the other one’s culture,
Ignorance swoops down like a vulture.

KRS-One, “You Must Learn,” from Boogie Down Production’s Ghetto Music – The Blueprint of Hip-Hop, 1989

Ignorance is a poison and knowledge will nourish.

KRS-One, “Word From Our Sponsor,” from Boogie Down Productions’ Criminal Minded, 1987

Are you tired of lyrical liars, passing fliers,
Wannabe MC’s, but really good triers,
Tripping over mic cords, getting you bored,
A total fraud, this kind of thing I can’t afford!

KRS-One, “Mortal Thought,” Return of the Boom-Bap, 1993

Now it’s my turn, and I am concerned
About idiots posing as kings.
What are we here to rule?
I thought we were supposed to sing.
And if we oughta sing, then let us begin to teach.
Many of you are educated…open your mouth and speak!

KRS-One, “I’m Still #1,” from Boogie Down Productions’ By All Means Necessary, 1988

You were put here to protect us.
But who protects us from you?

KRS-One, “Who Protects Us From You?” from Boogie Down Productions’ Ghetto Music: The Blueprint of Hip Hop, 1989

Believers of Jesus be denouncing Satan on every level,
But every Halloween they’re dressin’ like devils.

KRS-One, “Higher Level,” Return of the Boom Bap, 1993. More from KRS…

Rap is like a set-up…a lot of games,
A lot of suckers with colorful names.
‘I’m so-and-so,’ ‘I’m this, I’m that.’
But they all just wick-wick-wack.

KRS-One, “My Philosophy,” from BDP’s By All Means Necessary, 1988. More from KRS…