Alonzo Williams the founder of the World Class Wreckin Cru’ was one of the early DJ’s on the West Coast. Discovering the career path after the opportunity to attend a broadcasting school after high school set Alonzo on the path to become a DJ learning how to work on turntables and cut commercials which eventually led him to owning his own club where he would produce his own commercials. Meeting Dr. Dre in 1983 he had already done extensive runs as a house party DJ, club DJ, and become well known for being the owner of the high class Los Angeles club Eve After Dark, before giving a kid he had known for years that lived on his street the opportunity to join himself and DJ Yella in the World Class Wreckin Cru’.
Ryan Glover: So I’ here with one of the most overlooked figures in all of hip-hop. One of the first DJs from California, also a past club owner and formerly the leader of the World Class Wreckin Cru’ Alonzo Williams, how are you doing today?
Alonzo Williams: I’m doing fantastic, what about yourself Doc?
Ryan Glover: I’m doing really good. So Alonzo tell me about the early days of becoming a DJ because it wasn’t a lot of people who were being a DJ. So, what inspired you to go that path?
Alonzo Williams: Back in the day when I was a kid they used to have a lot of dances in my school and from there they gave dances in the park. I’ll never forget walking into one of the dances at Campanella Park in Compton and the DJ had it rocking and you know we had out lil’ sayings back then. I loved the energy that he was generating and I thought because he was from the radio station you had to be a radio DJ to be a park DJ. By the time I got out of high school I was offered the opportunity to go to a broadcast school and I did that with the intentions of being a street DJ, I didn’t want to be a radio DJ. I talked funny and I didn’t have that much confidence in my speaking ability, but I knew music.
Ryan Glover: The World Class Wreckin Cru’ had a big single “Turn Off the Lights” with Michel’e. Then eventually you guys parted ways, how did that end up happening?
Alonzo Williams: At the time of “Turn Off the Lights” we had already had discussions about going our separate ways. Run-DMC was starting to take off. We we’re having our issues with money, personality issues, and Eazy was in Dre’s ear. Dre was going to jail on a regular basis and I stopped getting him out of jail. It was a cluster fuck.
Ryan Glover: You talk about R&B ballads being popular at the time and being a necessity at the time to wear the shiny suits. You actually own the original Dr. Dre shiny suit. Do you plan on selling that?
Alonzo Williams: Hell, yeah (laughs). I wouldn’t give a damn. It’s a reminder of what we [accomplished]. My ol’ lady gets mad because my house is like Alonzo’s shrine.
Ryan Glover: You also at one point had a Dr. Dre sex tape and the original master recording of the original “Boyz in the Hood” song?
Alonzo Williams: The sex tape I know is gone fasho. I could use that right about now, TMZ could cut me a fat ass check. I may still have the Eazy-E original demo tape for ‘Boyz N the Hood”.
Ryan Glover: You also got Ice Cube his first record deal. Did you see the potential of him early on. Did you think he would be as big as he is now?
Alonzo Williams: We didn’t think hip-hop was going to last as long as it did. We we’re like surfers trying to ride a wave, we didn’t know the wave was going to be a tsunami. I would love to tell you yeah, but nah, I’m not going to tell you that big ass lie. Just some kids I saw at a talent show and I found out they were Dre’s cousins. He came to the studio and did a demo right quick, and the rest is history.
Ryan Glover: Jerry Heller was your manager. He wasn’t happy with the way he was depicted in “Straight Outta Compton” because he felt he was portrayed as a sleazy manager. Did you feel the portrayal was accurate?
Alonzo Williams: Jerry Heller always made sure he covered Jerry Heller’s ass. As a business-man my objective is to win at all costs. He wasn’t obligated to teach you shit. I’m not saying he’s obligated to take advantage of you. The record business is one of the coldest games in the world. If you don’t understand that coming in your sadly mistaken. I think it was a lot of stuff in ‘Straight Outta Compton’ that could have been depicted better?
Ryan Glover: What are some of the biggest inaccuracies in the film?
Alonzo Williams: That I was a hater. I was an innovator and motivator. I understand you had to have an antagonist in the film. That’s Hollywood. Jerry Heller carrying records and Eazy-E being so broke he had to sell weed is some bullshit.
Ryan Glover: Did you think the Michel’le movie “Surviving Compton” was more accurate?
Alonzo Williams: Nah, that had me buying socks. Some bullshit, I don’t buy no fucking socks.
Ryan Glover: Were you surprised that the first album “Straight Outta Compton” had a message but the second album “Niggaz4Life” it was devoid of that message and seemed like it was playing up to stereotypes?
Alonzo Williams: That’s something that I always told people the messages in the two albums were totally different. They never started off being gangsters they were telling gangster stories. Later on they became gangsters. Once they got the FBI letter it blew them up so big it changed everything. Sometimes you morph into what people are willing to pay to see.
This interview has been edited for brevity. Check out the full interview below: