Arabian Prince

Last updated
Arabian Prince
Birth nameKim Renard Nazel
Born (1965-06-17) June 17, 1965 (age 53)
Compton, California
Genres Electro, hip hop
Occupation(s) Rapper, singer-songwriter, record producer, DJ
InstrumentsVocals, synthesizer, keyboards, turntables, drum machine, sampler
Years active1984–present
LabelsOrpheus Records
Da Bozak Records
Macola Records
Stones Throw Records
Associated acts N.W.A
Bobby Jimmy & the Critters
Uncle Jamm's Army
J. J. Fad

Kim Renard Nazel (born June 17, 1965), [1] better known by his stage names Arabian Prince or Professor X, is an American rapper, singer-songwriter, record producer, and DJ. [2] [3] [4] [5] [6] [7] He is best known as a founding member of N.W.A.

Stage name pseudonym used by performing artist

A stage name is a pseudonym used by performers and entertainers, such as actors, comedians, singers and musicians. Such titles are adopted for a wide variety of reasons and may be similar or nearly identical to an individual's birth name. In some situations, a performer will eventually adopt their title as a legal name, although this is often not the case. Personal names or nicknames that make up the professional name should not necessarily be considered as a "fake name" like Lady Gaga : for example: Miley Cyrus: born Destiny Hope Cyrus, uses her personal nickname "Miley" and her maiden name "Cyrus" as her professional name.


Early life

Nazel was born in Compton, California to the son of Joseph "Skippy" Nazel Jr., a prominent African-American author and radio talk show host. [8] His musical background came from his mother, a piano teacher and classical musician. [8] His family tried their best to shelter him, sending him to a Catholic school and keeping him busy with football to keep him away from the gangs. The younger Nazel got his first experience with making music at the radio station his father was hosting his talk show by using the station's equipment to put together mixtapes that he would sell at school. [8] Nazel went on to graduate from Junípero Serra High School in nearby Gardena. [9]

Mixtape compilation of songs recorded onto any audio format

A mixtape is a compilation of music, typically from multiple sources, recorded onto a medium. With origins in the 1980s, the term normally describes a homemade compilation of music onto a cassette tape, CD, or digital playlist. The songs are either ordered sequentially or made into a continuous program by beatmatching the songs and creating seamless transitions at their beginnings and endings with fades or abrupt edits. Essayist Geoffrey O'Brien described this definition of the mixtape as "perhaps the most widely practiced American art form".

Junípero Serra High School (Gardena, California) Roman Catholic high school in Gardena, California

Junípero Serra High School is a private, Roman Catholic high school in Gardena, California, United States, a suburban city located 14 miles southwest from downtown Los Angeles. Honored as a State School of the Year, Serra is operated by the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Los Angeles.

Music career

Nazel took the stage name of DJ Prince at first, out of respect for Prince, and started selling mixtapes at school. While working at a luggage store at the Del Amo Mall, its owner Sam Nassif would ask DJ Prince to dj a party at a community center, and because of his huge following from high school DJ Prince packed the place. He kept performing there for several weekends and the success persuaded Nassif to invest even more in the place, renaming it "The Cave", where Nazel would continue to host for over three years and even after his N.W.A. days. Nassif was also the one to fund DJ Prince first record, "Strange Life" He changed his stage name when he was 15 years old at the Skateland USA, the same skating venue credited for launching the NWA a few years later, due to a fan's suggestion. He said about his name: [10]

I called myself DJ Prince at first; back in the day, I always used to dress like Prince. That was the thing in the early ’80s — either you dressed like Prince or you dressed like Michael Jackson. I used to wear the tight parachute pants, and I had the trim moustache, the whole thing. One day I was DJing at a skating rink. I was with Egyptian Lover, that was my boy, still is. This girl comes up to us and asks us our names. And he’s like, "I’m Egyptian Lover." And I’m like, "I’m DJ Prince." She looks at me and goes, "I always see you two together. You should call yourself Arabian Prince." And I guess that just stuck. [9]

Arabian Prince started working with Bobby Jimmy & the Critters in 1984. He also produced the hit single and album for J.J. Fad, "Supersonic".

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In 1986, he was a founding member of N.W.A but when fellow member Ice Cube came back from the Phoenix Institute of Technology in 1988, Arabian Prince soon after left over royalty and contract disagreements. "I started off as a solo artist", he said, " so I was aware of what a royalty statement was. I knew that when these many records were sold, there is a quarterly statement. When you look at it, you can see how much money was paid and then share it. This was not the case. We were also never paid for touring." Eazy-E, Ice Cube and MC Ren remained as the main performers, DJ Yella was the turntablist and Dr. Dre was the main producer. [11]

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After leaving N.W.A, Arabian Prince began a solo career. His first album, Brother Arab , was released in 1989 with the hit single "She's Got A Big Posse"; Where's My Bytches followed in 1993.

In the mid-2000s, he started releasing music again, with his Professor X project on the Dutch label Clone Records. "I could not release the record under Arabian Prince", he said, "because I already had a single out, so I called myself Professor X on that record." [12] In 2007 he performed as a DJ on the 2K Sports Holiday Bounce Tour with artists from the Stones Throw label. In 2008, Stones Throw released a compilation of his electro-rap material from the 1980s. [13] One of his songs was included on the 2007 video game, College Hoops 2K8 .

In 2018, Arabian Prince appeared on the fourteenth studio album of industrial-metal band Ministry. [14]

Other ventures

Aside from his music career, he worked in special effects, 3D animation and video games. [9] [15] [16]

Straight Outta Compton movie controversy

After the release of the NWA film, Straight Outta Compton, in 2015, Arabian Prince said to VladTV: "A lot of the scenes in real life, I was there -I'm just not there in the film, which I'm like, if you're gonna write me out of a movie, shoot some other scenes. Don't write scenes where I was there." [17] Some of the pivotal scenes would be choosing the name for the band, the tour and the infamous Detroit concert. He also remembers himself as the main opposer to Jerry Heller about the royalties and the money, a role that in the movie was instead given to Ice Cube.




With N.W.A

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  2. HipHopDX (23 August 2008). "Arabian Prince: New Funky Nation". HipHopDX. Retrieved 23 August 2015.
  3. Martin Cizmar. "Arabian Prince: What Happened After N.W.A. and the Posse?". Phoenix New Times. Retrieved 23 August 2015.
  4. Southern California Public Radio. "Lost N.W.A member Arabian Prince plays MacArthur Park on July 28". Southern California Public Radio. Retrieved 23 August 2015.
  5. Kyle Grace. "N.W.A. - AskMen". AskMen. Retrieved 23 August 2015.
  6. "Arabian Prince | West Coast Rap Artists | West Coast Rap Pioneers | Tribute to the Early West Coast Rap Scene: Website Title". 1965-06-17. Archived from the original on 2015-08-08. Retrieved 2015-08-15.
  7. Brandes, Wendy (September 8, 2015). "Kept Outta "Compton": N.W.A's Arabian Prince Has No Regrets". Huffington Post. Retrieved November 15, 2015.
  8. 1 2 3 Eshaiker, Amin (2008). Egon (ed.). Innovative Life: The Anthology, 1984-1989 (Liner notes). Arabian Prince. Los Angeles: Stones Throw Records. pp. 6–7.
  9. 1 2 3 Mike Sager (16 January 2016). "Arabian Prince Left N.W.A and He's Doing Just Fine". MEL Magazine. Retrieved 1 November 2017.
  10. Jasmin St.Claire (3 May 2016). "How Arabian Prince was written "Straight Outta Compton"". Kindland.
  11. Martin Cizmar. "Whatever Happened to N.W.A's Posse?". L.A. Weekly. Retrieved 23 August 2015.
  12. Christina Li. "Hey, DJ: OG Arabian Prince".
  13. "Arabian Prince | Stones Throw Records". Retrieved 2015-08-15.
  14. Scott Munro. "Ministry Bring In Ex-NWA Man Arabian Prince". Metal Hammer. Retrieved 19 April 2018.
  15. Martins, Chris (10 September 2008). "Arabian Prince: A Jheri Blossoms".
  16. Weiss, Jeff (22 August 2008). "His 'Innovative Life'" via LA Times.
  17. "Arabian Prince reveals discrepancies in "Straight Outta Compton"".
  18. Paine, Jake (2008-07-03). "Stones Throw Records Releases N.W.A. Affiliate Album". HipHopDX. Retrieved 2015-08-15.