Mr 3-2 & Big Mike – The Governor & The Peter Man 12”LP:


The best surprise from last year by a Pacific gap.

I can’t remember how I discovered it whilst researching forgone obscurities, but my eyes burst out my brow.

Old, early 90s, unreleased material from Big Mike & Lord 3-2?

are you muthufuccin’ serious?


These two released one of my all time favourite LPs in the inchoate 90s on prime Rap-A-Lot as the cult duo Convicts or Ex-Cons.

It is a notorious, low-blow, deep-fried classic with more rawness than a medical waste chute.

As a two-piece, they worked incredibly effectively together, & kind of embraced the most notorious & shameless elements of the early 5th Ward brazen & flagrant conduct.

Unfortunately, due to various complexities, rivalries & misfortune, the group never issued another collaboration project, or enjoyed adequate productivity as independent performers.

That is also what makes this marvellous EP-LP (five tracks in total, with no bullshit instrumentals or superfluous filler) so damn special.

It has also been very well presented, with exclusive photographs & simple but quality sleeve design.

Limited to just x160 copies, it is extremely short on information, but it is what it is.

Lord 3-2 was a rapper that underwent an almost complete transformation early in his career as an MC (from ultra-ag dirty South to smooth West side). He started as one of the hardest, most savage & most venomous rappers alive, often spitting some of the harshest & unforgiving shit with a clearly palpable vitriol. Beside his activity with Mike & Rap-A-Lot, he was also a member of the South Park Coalition.

His early guest appearances on the likes of Point Blank’s Prone to Bad Dreams, The Terrorist’s Terror Strikes, Always Bizness, Never Personal & Big Melo’s classic Bone Hard Zaggin are short but extremely memorable cameos.

One of the baddest rappers ever as far as I am concerned.

This was pretty much completely expelled from his performative manner later on, with the softening influence of “G-Funk’s” global success.

So much of Rap’s regional individuality was trashed in the wake of Dre & Snoop’s success, but both 3-2 & Mike have a much, much closer direct involvement to Cali & the birth of G-Funk.

take your styles & run with it

It is worth a lot of attention, but for now, I just want to focus on this dope LP & The Convicts as a whole.

nobody does it like early 90s 5th Ward

Big Mike side. Y’ got two cuts, Don’t Let the Smooth Taste Fool You was clearly written ffor Bushwick Bill. It’s well documented that Bill did not write his own rhymes in the earlier stages of his career, with Scar Face & Willie D of the Geto Boys, as well as I believe the occasional script from Ganksta N-I-P on his more “Horror Core” tracks penning his lines for him. Mike of course replaced Willie D on Till Death do us Part. So it is plausible that this track was a potential pilot for Bushwick to adopt on this album or an intended solo endeavour.

Whatever the case, it’s written from Bushwick’s perspective, but it’s still a simple but staple banger in the oldskool style.

Next we have Once Upon a Time …. it’s another of those “explicit toon” joints, where renowned cartoon & nursery rhyme characters are reimagined as all ilk of felons & hustlers.

This shit got the rounds back then, Choice – Story Book Ho’s, K-Rino The Cartoon Orgy & Ice Cube’s A Gangsta’s Fairytale etc.

Big Mike also doubled with Choice on the classic Thank It’s a Game, from 92’s brilliant Stick-N-Moove album, as a duelling spat of the sexes. Choice is another absurdly slept on, pioneering & pivotal Southern rapper that needs a lot more attention …. I just fuckin’ hate how these cocksuckurz cut out such important originators from the popular narrative ><

the illest cut on the LP is 3-2’s Straight From the County. Slab. This I also assume was what left the scar & precipitated the concept of The Convicts/Ex-Cons, where the prevailing subject would be these two jailbirds going extended incarceration on the listener.

This is a great, well designed, rare LP, & precious piece of ghetto documentation.

I can’t coin who the DJ(s) is? It’s the vintage, early H-Town style, a-la Crazy C, DJ Ready Red etc.

The LP’s “presenter” is credited simply as Def Jam Blaster.

The label responsible is Grave Fillers Records and Tapes.

Whilst researching this LP & topic, I learned that 3-2 is fucking deceased! Shot dead at a gas station in 2016. DAMN! Fellow Hiram Clarke collaborator & rapper Big Melo left us in 2002.

Grave Fillers Records and Tapes, 2022 (1989-1992)