Public Enemy
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Public Enemy is an American hip hop group consisting of Chuck D and DJ Lord. Formed in Long Island, New York, in 1985, they are known for their music with a heavy political message alongside strong criticism of the media of the United States, with many of their works also revolving around frustrations and concerns of the African American community.

Public Enemy's debut album, Yo! Bum Rush the Show, was released in 1987 to critical acclaim and their second album, It Takes a Nation of Millions to Hold Us Back (1988), was the first hip hop album to top The Village Voice's Pazz & Jop critics' poll. Their next three albums, Fear of a Black Planet (1990), Apocalypse 91... The Enemy Strikes Black (1991) and Muse Sick-n-Hour Mess Age (1994), were also well received by music critics. Public Enemy has gone through lineup changes over the years, with Chuck D being the only constant member of the group. Professor Griff left in 1989 but rejoined in 1998, though he parted ways with the group again some years later. DJ Lord also joined Public Enemy in 1998 as the replacement of the group's original DJ Terminator X. Flavor Flav, one of the co-founders of Public Enemy, was a member of the group for three-and-a-half decades, until he was fired in 2020. This turned out to be a publicity stunt that was called an April Fools' Day prank. Public Enemy minus Flavor Flav also tour and record music under the name of Public Enemy Radio which consists of the lineup of Chuck D, Jahi, DJ Lord and the S1Ws.

Public Enemy's first four albums during the late 1980s and early 1990s were all certified either gold or platinum and were, according to music critic Robert Hilburn in 1998, "the most acclaimed body of work ever by a hip hop act". Critic Stephen Thomas Erlewine called them "the most influential and radical band of their time". They were inducted into Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2013. They were honored with the Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award at the 62nd Grammy Awards.

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It Takes a Nation of Millions to Hold Us Back

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by  Christopher R. Weingarten
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