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House Of Pain are a rap group hailing from New York City, New York, United States who formed in 1991. They are famous for their 1992 global hit “Jump Around” and have released three studio albums since their self-titled debut effort, released in the same year.
Fashioning themselves as Irish-American hooligans, the band began life as a collaboration between rappers Everlast (A.K.A Erik Schrody) and Danny Boy O’Connor, along with turntablist and producer DJ Lethal (Leor Dimant), who has since gained notoriety as Limp Bizkit’s DJ. Everlast and Danny Boy met while at high school in California, where Danny Boy was already conceptualising House Of Pain. After their families had moved to New York City, Danny Boy impressed Everlast with his skills as a rapper. He asked him to front the group while Danny Boy himself would act as his hype man, but to complete the group they needed someone to DJ for them.
For that role, Everlast called upon Lethal, who was an old friend of his who had made his name on the L.A hip-hop scene as a beatboxer before taking up the turntables. Before they’d realized it, they’d formed one of the very few all white hip-hop groups around, and their early success put them solidly in the same league as their spiritual predecessors The Beastie Boys. They started gigging and making a name for themselves on the New York City hip-hop scene and attracted the attention of Tommy Boy Records. The band were soon signed to the label but no-one at all could have guessed where they’d go from there.
Their self-titled debut was released in 1992, and was a multi-Platinum selling hit fuelled by the astonishing success of its single “Jump Around”, which hit number three on the Billboard Hot 100 months after its release. Unfortunately, that left them with nowhere to go but down, and after two lacklustre albums that didn’t produce any hits, the band called it a day in 1996 after the tensions between the members had sucked all the fun out of working together. Surprisingly, the band members have had pretty fruitful careers since, with Everlast going on to front a celebrated solo career and Lethal going on to join one of the most commercially successful rock bands of the 1990’s, Limp Bizkit.
Danny Boy went behind the scenes after attempting a couple of aborted comebacks. The musical projects A.T.F (Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms) and XSupermodels didn’t go anywhere, but afterwards he found gainful employment as a graphic designer in the hip-hop world. The band couldn’t stay away for long though, and in 2010 they got back together and have been sporadically reuniting for short tours ever since. Those that say that hip-hop doesn’t work live clearly haven’t seen the utter carnage that “Jump Around” can still cause to this day, and for that reason, the band comes highly recommended.