By D.L. Chandler
As one half of the legendary and influential Texas hip hop duo UGK , Pimp C’s lasting legacy as a rapper and producer lives on through his partner Bun B’s music and a host of fitting tributes recorded by Bun and other notable acts since the rapper’s unfortunate death.
The rapper born Chad Lamont Butler would have been 37 years old today, if not for the colorful MC’s accidental overdose of promethazine and codeine – also known as “drank.” Authorities found the Port Arthur, Texas star in a Los Angeles hotel on December 4, 2007. The brutally honest Pimpin’ Chad shared openly through his music and in interviews about his partying lifestyle and the consumption of the concoction was extremely popular at the time.
Pimp C’s interview style was something to behold. The rapper never minced words and his no-holds-barred style of straight talk was just as entertaining as his verses. Pimp C’s now-infamous interview with Atlanta radio station Hot 107.9 stemming from some scatching comments in Ozone magazine was one of the most talked about stories in 2007. The Pimp addressed all questions from the article in his usual humorous and brash fashion, naming names fearlessly and potentially sparking dissent between Atlanta and Texas, both powerhouse areas for rap at the time. The issue took fire beyond the comments but the outspoken Butler eventually apologized to his Atlanta fans a short while later.
UGK’s profile escalated at a time when Pimp C was incarcerated between 2002 and 2005, with the diplomatic Bun B working alongside everyone to keep his group’s name afloat while awaiting Pimp’s release. Both artists went on to release solo records after Butler’s prison stint. However, the hot-selling and critically acclaimed fifth studio album Underground Kingz was a fitting opus, reuniting the long-time friends and opening their style of southern hip hop to an audience unfamiliar of their significant impact.
RIP to the great Pimp C.