The Best Bling Ever!

  1. Reggie Ossé and Gabriel Tolliver, authors of Bling: The Hip-Hop Jewelry Book, pick 10 watershed moments in the history of bling.
    By Mike Errico
    [​IMG], December 2006

    Dennis Coles, aka Ghostface Killah, taking a much needed snack break, shows off one of his most prized possessions, his "Wu Bird". I can’t take out of the recesses of my memory ever seeing a piece like that. It’s a Wonder Woman bracelet with an eagle on top. Actually, he has a new one that he’s been wearing, with the same type of big Roman bracelet foundation. It's a solid gold, eight-inch, G.I. Joe-like figure standing and holding what appears to be a globe. It’s his take on Atlas. Going beyond what instant reaction there is to criticize, if you just look at the craftsmanship of that piece, it is just amazing.

    Kurtis Blow shows us why he's hip-hop's first sex symbol. In that day and age, it was less about the bling and more about the chest … and the hair. If you look at Kurtis’ expression on his face and his whole body language, he’s definitely blinging in his own mind. When you take that image and you compare it to a Slick Rick or a Ghostface, you can definitely say he wasn’t blinging, but life was so much simpler then. We were still very much immersed in the whole disco era and evolving from that to where these kids are taking it.
    Dennis Coles, aka Ghostface Killah.jpg Kurtis Blow.jpg
  2. A diamond pistol made by the House of Bijan. We’ve had personal experiences where we‘ve encountered some very wealthy, conservative individuals in their 50s who’ve had 24k gold .45 pistols. General Patton, back in the day, had his own blinged out .45. Why? Because he could. Bling is really showing the world your wealth in an excessive manner. Walking around with a weapon that’s worth over $100,000 — it's power on two levels. This would be a great idea for an anniversary gift. Actually, maybe not. [Laughs.]

    Mathematiks' incredibly detailed turntable ring, with spinning turntable. It’s from two designers out of Long Island City, Dave and Hozi, who are not well known, even though they have some pretty reputable clients. The turntable is built on a spindle and actually has a spring, so if you apply a little pressure, it bounces like a real turntable. These guys are really craftsmen. If they weren’t doing that, they’d probably be painting frescos or something. "If I were a Lilliputian DJ," interjects Tolliver, "not only would I rock the house, I'd score with mad tiny chicks!"
    A Diamond Pistol.jpg Turntable Ring.jpg
  3. Slick Rick, hip-hop's original "King of Bling." Not only does Rick show us that he can effortlessly carry over 40 pounds of jewelry on his neck, but that he's also ready to deal with those damned INS agents. I would say, when Slick inked his initial record contract, there was little room for him to be as successful as the Jay-Zs and Puffys of the world, and I would imagine he was probably not as able as his contemporaries to indulge in that amount of bling. But that was part of his persona. You can’t, even to this day, imagine Slick Rick without all that jewelry. He's someone else.

    Manny's Rolls Royce, a classic late 1970's – early 1980's finger ring. This was a must-have amongst the period's Harlemite drug dealers, hustlers, pimps and underground elite. Like Masonic signs, bling like this allows one to realize that they’ve encountered someone else in their secret society. This is bling that lets people know about who they are — and that they’ve arrived.
    Slick Rick.jpg Manny's Rolls Royce.jpg
  4. A piece made by Avianne for one of the members of hip-hop's version of the Sex Pistols, [the] Diplomats. All those colors show us why these dudes are seriously ballin'. It’s also a visual metaphor for sampling. They took elements of the presidential seal, much like the Ramones did with their logo, and remixed it. I can only compare them to the punk movement, which was so anti-establishment. To the unknowing or uninitiated eye, it was like, what the hell are you guys doing?

    Eddie's Gold Teeth: Gold teeth have been around for ages. It’s also documented that in a pinch, people have used their gold teeth as a form of currency. When we had our initial event a month and a half ago, to play the part, I bought a pair of grills and I spoke on a panel, and it definitely did obstruct my speech. I had a slight lisp. But I guess some people incorporate that into their style. It’s part of the swagger. Likewise, people would argue that 50 Cent, who doesn’t wear a grill, has somewhat improved his manner of speech ever since he got a sliver of his tongue removed after being shot.
    Made By Avianne.jpg Eddie's Gold Teeth.jpg
  5. The Clown Prince of hip-hop, Biz Markie, rocking his custom made 18k gold four-finger ring, designed by Tito of Manny's. Biz Markie is such a unique individual, and those rings were part of the regalia, but that image just speaks to who he is — his outlandishness, which I don’t think anybody else would have been able to artfully or tastefully carry off. Biz does it so well, and his piece captures the time, the essence and the feel of his day.

    Ol' Dirty Bastard, rocking his ill set of grills. I think this shot speaks to the last period when the grills were definitely part of a New York, Northeastern phenomenon. This is classic ODB in his state of genius/befuddlement. R.I.P. dude, you were one of the illest! Hope the man upstairs isn't too tight about you rocking your shines in Heaven.
    Biz Markie.jpg Ol' Dirty Bastard.jpg
  6. I'm speechless:wtf:
  7. ^At the waste of perfectly good gold and gems on ugly jewelry or the ridiculous prose the authors came up with?
  8. Just think of the gorgeous pieces I could have made with all that gold... BUT: to each his/her own!
  9. "Ill" is certainly how this thread makes me feel...

  10. Amid looming fears of a national recession, Miami MC Rick Ross is doing his part to jump-start the economy by commissioning one of the most ostentatious pieces of jewelry in hip-hop history: a diamond-encrusted replica of his own head. It took King Johnny of Houston two and a half months to craft this 5" x 3 ½" behemoth of canary yellow diamonds and black onyx, and set Ross back $200,000. "I'm against global warming," he explains. "I'm a supporter of the ice."
    Rick Ross.jpg
  11. How could they forget Mr. T? He is the patron saint of all bling IMO!! :yes:

  12. :tdown: :throwup:
  13. fugly jewelry but this cracked me up
  14. Tacky, tacky, tacky...
  15. WOW...what a fun thread!! I love the grillz :smile: