Houston's history is dotted with albums that, fairly or not, have been swept aside. We'll examine them here. Have an album that you think nobody knows about but should? Email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Controversy (Rap-A-Lot, 1995)
Note: Yes, we're aware he's gone by "Willie D" for the majority of his career, but for this album he was "Willie Dee" so that's what we're going to call him. Plus, the two -ee's on the end just make his name so much endearing. "Willie D" sounds like the name of an excessively macho, intimidating street thug. "Willie Dee," however" sounds like the nickname you give to your neighbor's nine-your-old son.
Regarding the Geto Boys group recipe: Scarface was the streetwise one. Bushwick was the crazy one. And Willie Dee was the mad one. The really, really mad one. And on no album did he more successfully channel that angst into listenability than on Controversy, his official solo debut. He was brash and in-your-face and unnerving. But he was also smart and funny and (occasionally) profound.
Y'allmustaforgotability: 74 percent
If you grabbed 25 more "This Was About Two Steps Away From Being An Undeniable Classic" albums and lined them all up next to each other, this one would probably has the lowest Y'allmustaforgotability rating of them all. It's just kinda hard to forgot songs with titles like "Bald Headed Hoes" or "Fuck The KKK."
Best Song on the Album: This is completely off base, but we're going to go with the sleeper pick "Bald Headed Hoes" here, Willie's anti-short hair magnum opus. "Welfare Bitch" (which you could somewhat reasonably argue was "Brenda's Got A Baby" before "Brenda's Got A Baby" came out) is probably the one that should've been picked, but "Bald Headed Hoes" is just too uproarious not to earn the nod. We mean, he wrote an entire song about a hairstyle. And there were four verses. And they're all good. That's incredible. A couple of lines about how Willie felt at the time about women with short hair:
- You remind me of that monkey-looking bitch Grace Jones
- Fucked up is how you look to Willie D
- What are you bitch a boy or a girl? I can't tell cause your [hair] on the sides is gone
- There should be a crime against bald head hoes
- Hair spots on a hot sunny day, too many gaps in the scalp is a dead giveaway
- Im proposing a bill, to Capital Hill, to kill all bald headed women at will
Now, is there any way you can not pick that song as the best on the album? Of course not.
Obscure Fact(s) You Can Pawn Off As Your Own So As To Make Yourself Look Smart:
This was an excellent ironic album cover. It was like Willie and a bunch of guys were sitting in a room trying to figure out what the design should be and the following conversation happened:
Guy: Well, the album is called Controversy. Let's put some controversial stuff on there. What's controversial?
Willie: Ummm, the KKK.
Guy: Okay, okay.
Willie: Oooh, girls in bikinis. Feminists always get riled up.
Guy: Good one.
Willie: The police.
Willie: Hmmm... what else? Oh, I got it. Oiled up muscular black guys with their shirts off.
Guy: Bingo. Now, which one should we pick for the cover?
Willie: Fuck it. Let's put 'em all on there.
That's probably exactly how that cover came to be.
Keep the Houston Press Free... Since we started the Houston Press, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Houston, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Houston with no paywalls.