Knowledge the Pirate - Buried Treasury

"While Trump tweeting quotes from Mussolini / Shit I'm trying to raise my Kundalini." Those lines, juxtaposing fascism and Dharma, have won Knowledge the Pirate some well-earned praise since Rosebudd's Revenge dropped. His "No Smoke" verse, clearly a show stopper, is in point of fact just the latest in a string of solid contributions to Roc Marciano projects, following "Didn't Know" and "Drug Lords" from Marci Beaucoup; "Slingers," "Shower Posse," and "Ten Toes Down" from Pimpire Strikes Back; and "Not Told" from Reloaded. Add on the non-album cut "Her Vice" and the Ricky Dubs feature "Shot A Man," and you've got a nice playlist of Marciano-Pirate collabos.

Nice indeed, but these hardly represent the complete discography of Knowledge the Pirate aka Knowledge, an MC whose work dates back to the mid-'90s. Knowledge previously shed light on his history via a 2013 interview with the Village Voice, in which he discussed early come-ups via big-name affiliations such as Teddy Riley, The Neptunes and Will Smith. (The picture above was taken on the set of Men In Black, according to Knowledge's IG.) Though it provides a decent overview of Knowledge's first forays into the recording industry, the story fails to mention any of his early recordings by name.

With the recent news that a video for "No Smoke" is on the way (preview it here), I figured now's a good time to dig and see which rare Pirate jewels we might unearth. Using a few of the names mentioned in the VV interview, I combed Discogs and YouTube for previously unheard Knowledge the Pirate songs and came up with five tracks, including one solo cut and four guest features, which I compiled into the playlist streaming below. While you listen, note that the earliest of these tunes dates all the way back to 1994, making Knowledge's debut as much as three years older than "The Prophecy," Marciano's first appearance on wax.

1. Knowledge The Pirate - Am I The Blame (2010)
2. Will Smith - Act Like You Know [add'tl vox by Knowlege] (Born to Reign, 2002)
3. Mike E - Before We Get Too Close ft. Knowledge the Pirate & Queen Pen (Master Plan, 2000)
4. Knowledge the Pirate - Ahoy! (Harlem World Order, 1999)
4. Nutta Butta - Freak Out Remix ft. B.B.O., Knowledge the Pirate & Teddy Riley (12", 1998)
5. Wreckx-N-Effect - Criminal Minded ft. Knowledge & Rugged Baztud (Raps New Generation, 1996)
6. Wreckx-N-Effect - Something for da Radio ft. A-Q, Badd Newz, Knowledge & Rugged Baztud (Raps New Generation, 1996)
7. Wreckx-N-Effect - Sucka MC's ft. A-Plus, Knowledge, Nutta Butta (Raps New Generation, 1996)
8. Blackstreet - U Blow My Mind ft. Knowledge (Blackstreet, 1994)
9. Blackstreet - Baby Be Mine ft. Knowledge (Blackstreet, 1994)

EDIT (8/8/18): Discogs updates have allowed me to add four more tracks to the list. I also removed "The Point" as Knowledge's voice is impossible to pick out, and nobody has confirmed he's actually on there.

EDIT (3/28/23): The Nutta Butta track disappeared from YouTube so that's gone for now, but I also found out that "Ahoy!," which I previously thought was an unreleased loosie, was on DJ S&S' Harlem World Order album and added that here.

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