Ant Banks

Ant Banks, a Bay Area producer who began working behind the scenes with local legend Too Short, first appeared on two 1992 hip-hop soundtracks, Juice and Menace II Society. That same year, he was on production with Too Short (Shorty the Pimp) as well as associates Spice 1 and Pooh-Man. Through his connections, Banks signed a contract with Jive Records and released his debut album, Sittin' on Something Phat, in 1993. The record featured live instrumentation, including guitar by notable former Parliament mainstay Michael Hampton. The Big Badass and Do or Die followed during 1994-1995, showing Banks' capable techniques behind the microphone as well as the mixing board. For 1997's Big Thangs, however, he recruited some of the West Coast's best rappers to assist him, including Ice Cube, 2Pac, Too Short, and Ice-T. The strategy paid off, as the album hit the Top 20. In April of 1999, Banks released his T.W.D.Y. project, experiencing a substantial hit with the track "Players Holiday." A little over a year later, he followed with the second T.W.D.Y. album, Lead the Way. ~ John Bush

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