Ice-T’s album “Rhyme Pays” was the first rap album to carry a Parental Advisory label

Ice-T Rhyme Pays cover art

In the summer of 1990, the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA), after years of pressure from the Parents Music Resource Center, started to put “Parental Advisory: Explicit Lyrics” stickers on albums with content that may not be suitable for young audiences.

Three years before the RIAA started putting the Parental Advisory sticker on albums, Ice-T warned fans and listeners of explicit content on the cover of his debut, Rhyme Pays. On July 28, 1987, Ice-T’s debut studio album “Rhyme Pays” was released, becoming the first rap album/cd ever to have a red “Explicit Lyrics, Parental Advisory” warning sticker on the top left corner.

 "Rhyme Pays" was the first rap album to carry a Parental Advisory warning label

The album consisted of one of rap’s first ever gangsta rap songs, 6 ‘N the Mornin’, the first single to put Ice-T on the map. The album peaked at No. 93 on the U.S. Billboard 200, making Ice-T one of the pioneers of gangsta rap.

Ice-T’s Rhyme Pays tracklist

  1. “Intro/Rhyme Pays”
  2. “6 ‘N The Mornin'”
  3. “Make It Funky”
  4. “Somebody Gotta Do It (Pimpin’ Ain’t Easy)”
  5. 409″
  6. “I Love Ladies”
  7. “Sex”
  8. “Pain”
  9. “Squeeze the Trigger”
  10. “Make It Funky” (CD Bonus)
  11. “Sex” (CD Bonus)
  12. “Somebody Gotta Do It (Pimpin’ Ain’t Easy)” (CD Bonus)
  13. “Our Most Requested Record” (CD Bonus)

However, most people know the 2 Live Crew as the first to have an album with the parental advisory sticker. The 2 Live Crew were arrested for obscenity in June 1990, they were acquitted in trial, later resulting in them being the first to have the now-mainstream black and white parental advisory/explicit content sticker on their album Banned in the U.S.A.. But let the record be known, Ice-T had the first ever explicit lyrics sticker on a rap album, and it was red.

 2 Live Crew Banned In The USA

2 Live Crew’s 1990 album “Banned in the USA” was the first album to carry the Parental Advisory label in its black and white form but Ice-T’s album “Rhyme Pays” was the first rap album to carry a Parental Advisory label.

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