The Rise And Fall Of Guerilla Black
It was reported earlier this week that Compton-by-way-of-Chicago rapper (and sometimes-Biggie impersonator) Guerilla Black pled guilty on multiple charges of identity theft, credit card fraud and bank fraud. While we tried to feel bad for Black, who had a pretty epic and unexpected rise and fall in the hip-hop game, it really feels like he did it to himself. In case you haven’t been keeping up with Black’s trajectory since the release of his debut mixtape, XXL compiled a general timeline of Guerilla Black’s last 14 years. Check that, and the video for his breakout hit “Compton,” out below.
Charles “Guerilla Black” Williamson releases his debut
mixtape N.O.T.O.R.I.O.U.S. B.L.A.C.K. to lukewarm
Five years later, Guerilla Black releases hit first single “Compton,” featuring Beenie Man. The song hits No. 22 on the U.S. Rap chart.
Via Virgin Records, Guerilla Black drops his debut album Guerilla City. AllMusic calls it “damn impressive” and “one of the best rap albums to surface over the course of 2004.”
Vibe Magazine publishes a review of Guerilla Black’s album, discussing at length his vocal similarity to the late Notorious B.I.G. In the piece, writer Toshitaka Kondo writes, “His baritone voice and hyperactive delivery recall the Notorious B.I.G.’s… but unlike Biggie, his lyrics are mostly drenched with cliches and predictable rhyme schemes.”
The L.A. Times runs a profile of Guerilla Black, titled “Rapper’s Identity Crisis? No Biggie,” furthering comparisons between B.I.G. and Black.
|September 18, 2007
After being ridiculed out of mainstream hip-hop for being a biter and getting dropped by Virgin Records, Black returns with sophomore album God Bless The Child. The album features no hit songs or singles.
|January 8, 2008
Black releases “400 Shotz The Funeral, Part 1/3,” the first in a series of diss songs aimed at West Coast rappers The Game and Daz Dillinger, as well as Jermaine Dupri.
|November 4, 2008
Guerilla Black teams up with DJ Ill Will to release The Black Tapes Vol. 1, his final release as a solo artist.
|July 13, 2012
Williamson is arrested at his Los Angeles home on a 22-count indictment for buying stolen credit cards in bulk. Initial reports claim he purchased upwards of 27,000 stolen cards and stole nearly $150,000 through them.
|January 16, 2013
Williamson is again arrested, this time in Manhattan Beach, CA, for his involvement in the stolen credit card scheme. He is taken into custody on suspicion of credit card fraud, bank fraud and aggravated identity theft.
|July 9, 2013
Black finally owns up to his participation in the crimes and pleads guilty to the series of charges having to do with his credit card scam. Each charge he pled guilty to carries charges of up to 2, 5, 15 and 30 years of prison time. Black is scheduled to be sentenced on October 10th of this year.