Interview with Young D
Darkroom started with
black & white cassette singles, selling them out of the trunk, all
over the Bay Area and Northern California. They eventually made
enough noise to secure distribution through Oakland's now-defunct
Music People (home to many successful Bay Area rap artists
including: Cougnut, IMP, Richie Rich, 415, RBL Posse, Chunk, Totally
Insane, Master P, TRU, Dre Dog/Andre Nickatina, etc.). Throughout
the '90s, Darkroom Familia toured regionally and all over the
country, performing alongside E-40, Too $hort, Ice Cube, Rodney O &
Joe Cooley, 2nd II None, R. Kelly, Black Sheep, The Coup, The
Conscious Daughters, Zapp & Roger, to name a few. They continued
releasing albums but their first real hit was "From The Barrio With
Love," which led them to sign with Sunset Blvd./Warner Bros. Records
for the major label release of the album. One of the
executives at the label, asked Darkroom to join him on his new
label, Explicit Entertainment.
After recording six
albums for Explicit, Darkroom was being pursued by Dogday Records,
who had just sold an impressive 75,000 albums of 11/5's "Fiendin'
For The Funk." Darkoom's only intention were to become the biggest
and first Latino super group. Their plan was to release a movie and
soundtrack at the same time. A salivating Dogday Records eagerly
signed them. Darkroom Familia was now label-mates with Andre
Nickatina, 11/5 and The Coup. They signed for a very brief period,
only releasing six albums. After their contractual obligations were
over, Darkroom decided to stay independent and signed a distribution
deal with City Hall Records.
"Penitentiary Chances" was the first film released and distributed
by Bay Area rappers and has now reached cult-status, along with
their other film "Veteranos." Darkroom Familia made the cover of
Murder Dog hip hop magazine. They were the first Northern Cali Latin
rappers to have that honor. They have also appeared in numerous
publications including Lowrider Magazine, The Source, Rap Pages,
Billboard, 4080 Hip Hop Magazine, XXL, Rap Sheet, BAM and many more.
Since the late '90s, they continued making films and have now
released over 17 films to date. They have worked with such actors
as: Jesse Borrego ("Blood In Blood Out," "Con Air," "Mi Vida Loca,"
Fox TV's "24"), Angel Aviles ("Desperado," "Mi Vida Loca), Todd
Bridges ("Everybody Hates Chris," "Diff'rent Strokes"), Wee-Man
("Jackass") and more. Though most of their films are gritty,
action-packed stories, they've also done their fair share of horror
films and comedy; most notably the "I Got Five On It" franchise
(which has become the "Friday" of the 2000s). During the last 20
plus years, they have released over 100 albums to date. They are
currently signed with City Hall Records, home to Mac Dre and Thizz
Thanks to a loyal and dedicated
worldwide fanbase, Darkroom have sold 300,000 plus albums. Darkroom
Familia has gained fans as close as San Francisco/Oakland and as far
away as Mexico, Brazil, Germany, Austria, Australia, The United
Kingdom, Russia, Ukraine, Yugoslavia, Spain, Poland, Japan, France,
Sweden, Switzerland, Puerto Rico, Italy, Finland and Bavaria.
Darkroom Familia continues to release their trademark sound and
independent feature-length films that fans have come to love.