Black Concert: Digable Planets Live in Denver Friday 5-26!
Their debut album Reachin’ (A New Refutation of Time and Space) was released in 1993 and certified gold by the RIAA. The album’s lead single, “Rebirth of Slick (Cool Like Dat)” became a crossover hit, peaking at #15 on Billboard magazine’s singles chart, earning gold certification by the RIAA, and winning Best Rap Performance by a Duo or Group. The track peaked at #67 in the UK Singles Chart in February 1995.
The group’s second album Blowout Comb was released in 1994. The album was noted by critics as a stark departure from the previous album, being darker, less hook-oriented and more overtly political in its references to Black Panther and Communist imagery. Writing for Spin in December 1994, Craig Marks declared it “… a beguiling, demanding, damn near revolutionary follow-up.” Blowout Comb features guest appearances from artists Jeru the Damaja, Sulaiman and Guru of Gang Starr.
In the same year the group appeared on the Red Hot Organization’s compilation album, Stolen Moments: Red Hot + Cool. The album, meant to raise awareness and funds in support of the AIDS epidemic in relation to the African American community, was heralded as “Album of the Year” by Time magazine.
The band subsequently disbanded in early 1995 citing “creative differences”.
In February 2005 the trio reunited and embarked on a reunion tour, which was followed by the release of a compilation album titled Beyond the Spectrum: The Creamy Spy Chronicles on October 15, 2005 that combined previously released material with remixes and B-sides.
From 2009 to 2011, Butler and Irving toured across the U.S., Canada, and Europe with a live band, the Cosmic Funk Orchestra. Support acts included Camp Lo and Butler’s Shabazz Palaces.
The group performed at Numbers, in Houston, Texas, on May 15, 2010, alongside the hip hop duo Camp Lo. During an interview with the Houston Chronicle near the time of this show, Doodlebug stated that a new single would be released, called “Fresh Out”, and that a new album was planned for digital release in summer of 2010.The group also performed alongside hip-hop group The Pharcyde at the North by Northeast music festival in Toronto, Ontario on June 19, 2011.
A reunion show scheduled for December 2012 in Seattle, Washington was cancelled days before the performance. When asked in a subsequent interview about the group’s status, Butler stated “I think it’s the end.”
Despite Butler’s previous statement, it was announced in October 2015 that the trio would again reunite for a concert at Seattle’s Neptune Theatre on December 30 alongside Shabazz Palaces.
Digable Planets held a reunion tour during spring and summer 2016.
The May 4th Movement Starring Doodlebug
It’s Good to Be Here
What Cool Breezes Do
The Art of Easing
9th Wonder (Blackitolism) / Jungle Boogie
(Kool & The Gang cover)
Rebirth of Slick (Cool Like Dat)
Blowout Comb (1994)
Beyond the Spectrum: the Creamy Spy Chronicles (2005)