Sunday, March 04, 2007
Every time I came across Warren McGlone, aka Steady B. things weren't going his way. The first time I saw him was at the Richmond Colesium in 1992. Steady B. was part of group called CEB, comprised of a couple of other past-their-prime rappers. (The name was comprised of their initials and also stood for the prophetic phrase "Count Endless Bank.") It would be a failed attempt at reinvention.
Steady B. wasn't recognizable, the baseball cap and glasses that were his hallmark were out. Now, his distinguishing features were a bald head and missing teeth. Alternate cameraman DJ Reese spotted him backstage and set up a quick interview, talking me into letting him do it in the process. Steady B. had time on his hands, as the promoter had just informed him that their would be no show and no paycheck for CEB.
The next time I saw Steady B., he was the opening act at the long gone Richmond night spot, The Flood Zone. The odds were against him, he hadn't been out for awhile and times had changed. I was hoping he could pull something off, he still had some hits. I was looking forward to hearing "Serious" again. That wasn't happening. Steady B came on stage and lit a blunt.
I looked over at a cop standing along the wall of the club. He looked offended, but just watched as Steady began a piteous performance that failed to keep the crowd's attention. He left the stage after a short set and I caught a glimpse of him behind the curtain. He was leaning against the wall with his hands over his head. I couldn't see his face, but he looked upset. Someone tried to console him, but he wouldn't budge from that spot for awhile.
Hip hop heads know how this story ends, and it ain't good. Steady B. had one more time become front page news . He was convicted of second degree murder on October 30, 1996 and is serving a life sentence without the possibility of parole.