“Pos (Posdnous of De La Soul) hit me up one day and was like, ‘Yo, we got this joint we need you to spit on.’ He wanted me to kick that ‘Black is Black’ flow. But he was like, ‘This time, the song is going to be about meeting a girl.’ Pos was always into concepts. We thought alike when it came to music. I just went in the studio and did ‘Saturdays’ right there on the spot. We never worried about the spotlight or who was going to rhyme on a track first (Tip actually kicks off the classic De La Soul track). We just wanted to make great records.
Tribes’ chemistry with De La is what connected us just being boys. We all came up together during the same time period. We saw a lot of the same things and had a lot of the same thoughts about music and life. We wanted to be in the same situation as De La. They were getting the nice tours. They were on the LL Cool J Nitro tour back in ’89. They were doing The Arsenio Hall Show. So we saw that we needed our career to go in that direction. We left Red Alert who was Tribe’s manager at the time. Jungle didn’t fuck with us (Jungle Brothers member Mike G is the nephew of Red Alert) and everybody in the crew was hurt. Chris Lighty—who was the road manager for Jungle—also didn’t fuck with us. But Chris started working with us again around Low End Theory. We took him out and he became our road manager and I introduced him to Lyor Cohen and Russell Simmons and that’s how he got his whole thing going on with Violator.
By this time I felt like the Native Tongues crew was starting to split. Latifah was joining up with Shakim [Compere] to do Flava Unit. Jungle was doing their own thing. But Tribe and De La were always the tightest out of everybody, and we’re still tight to this day. Back then, we did little college tour runs together. We had a show in the early ‘90s with De La and the Souls of Mischief and we did a show in San Diego where we combined our shows into one. We would come out and do songs and then De La would come out, and Souls would come out and do two songs. It was a great show.
We played Madison Square Garden with Public Enemy and that whole experience was amazing. At that time it was us, PE, Geto Boys, Jazzy Jeff & the Fresh Prince, Ice T, and Latifah. Leaders of the New School was also on that tour. I remember Ice and Treach (from Naughty by Nature) got into a big fight with the police in St. Louis. Ice had yoked up one of the policeman out there. It was funny. Then we were in Milwaukee for a show and we were all staying on the same floor, and I had my door open. I was doing my little exercise for my bird chest and Ice walked by with some girl, looked in my room and said, ‘You getting your swoll on, huh young nigga?’ [laughs] And he just kept walking. That whole time was just bugged out.”