Founded:The 80's
Location:Brooklyn, NY
Brooklyn, NY
"Too Many To Mention"
Money, Hoes & Clothes Imagine the unimaginable, hundreds of inner city youth coming together for a specific cause, "To get dipped"!* (fly, fresh, etc) which in Brooklyn it meant your clothes were new and usually from the most flashy designers with the illest colors. Tommy Hilfiger was still an amateur in the streets. Izod was past tense and Versace wasn't even heard of in the Hip Hop fashion dictionary, niggers couldn't even pronounce the word until Biggie Smalls came on the scene. The head honcho in labels and brands was Ralph Lauren's "Polo". In our eyes he was worshipped like God. It was even to the point where some of us would carry a picture of Ralph Lauren in our wallets. "MONEY, HOES, AND CLOTHES was our motto and "LO" was our life The name Lo-Lifes came about in '88 when Big Vic Lo (Thirstin Howl III) got caught talking to a girl after he just got another girl's phone number. The girl said "you are a low-life" in a disrespectful manner. His reply, "you are right!" "I wear Lo everyday and "Lo" is my life. Then everybody replied, "that's right", We are Lo-Lifes!". It was never officially voted on, or anything it was just the name we lived by. The Lo-Lifes were originally composed of two boostin posse's from different sections in Brooklyn. There was the Crown Heights half who were originally known as "Ralphies Kids" (Ralph Lauren's Kids). That name being made by G-George whom lived on St. John's and Utica Avenue, which was also where Ralphies Kids could be found. Then there was the Brownsville half who were originally called POLO U.S.A. (United Shoplifters Association). That name being made up by Ski-Lo and Pumpkin (RIP). The Brownsville half were all mostly from the Marcus Garvey Village, with others from Van Dyke Houses. I remember before we became the Lo-Lifes, we would see each other on the trains. We use to plot on robbing one another for the Lo items we were wearing, it never came to that though. I was on the Deuce (42nd Street and Broadway) when we first clicked together. There were alot of movie theatres and game rooms there. There was photographers with all the different backgrounds to take your pictures in. We were stepping up to take pictures one Saturday night when Ralphies Kids were already on the Polo background, their wears were crisp. And that was the one thing we all had in common. So, niggers was like "yo let's take this flick together". So both mobs got in one flick together. Little did we know it would make history according to Brooklyn's streets. "Lo-Lifes" was mainly known for; boostin, running up in stores and just snatching everything. We made this common in our everyday activities. We turned it into a lifestyle and to this day it is still the way some original Lo-Lifes put food on the table. When we travel we would roll at least 50 or 60 deep and could be recognized by the rainbow of Ralph Lauren labels. By 1989, we grew and had members in the "90's" (East Flatbush) and East New York. We would get all dressed up just to go out to do dirt. Sometimes we would go to clubs wearing like 5 different Polo shirts each. We would wear one on top of the other and switch shirts. All night while walking around the nightclub, your prop status was rated on how much "Lo" you had and how big your heart was. When Lo-Lifes first united it was a mutual respect from Brownsville to Crown Heights. We did everything together, boost, fight, party and look for girls. So basically, we shared the same problem inner city youth face. Everyday was a fashion show and a shoplifting spree through upstate malls, Manhattan stores and even fast food joints like McDonalds were hit. We jacked everything from our deoderant to our milk and cereal for breakfast. Sometimes we got confused for the Decepticons, they did their thing to. The only difference between us was the attire. Lo-Lifes stayed extremely dipped. My man Shills-Lo, was telling me the other day that he is who he is because of his Lo-Life experience. The "Lo-Life" experiences gave him his whole thinking pattern, showed him means for survival and ways to help mom's pay the rent. Boostin became a culture, we don't claim to be the first to ever do it. All we are saying is that we made it go mainstream out on the N.Y. streets and even out in Philly where Boostin Bill, an original member established a whole other episode of Lo-Lifes. There was the uptown LoLifes who were Chris, Ibit, Rob and a whole bunch of Bronx heads who did crime so fast we use to have to race them to the victims, word! When we first established the Lo-Lifes a lot of us were mad young. Ten years ago and counting have gone by and Lo-Lifes have spreaded so much that many people none of the Originals know have claimed to be Lo-Lifes. On the streets, in the rap industry, even Abc's 20/20 was planning to do a episode on Lo-Lifes. They held a meeting over at ABC, somehow we found out about it and got there an hour late. We walked into a room full of different Rappers and boosters who claimed affiliation to Lo-Lifes. There were even Lo-Life hats made which was featured in a Source Magazine advertisement, none of us had anything to do with it or whomever designed it. Lo-Lifes is a title each original member has lived by and some died by. So the name is rightfully ours. The Lo-Lifes list is endless, there's so many members from both sides that never even met eachother. Whether you were apart of Ralphies Kids or Polo USA, once it was established everyone instantly became Lo-Life, even if you never met the other side. We would terrorize 42nd Street on Friday and Saturday nights. We were always so deep we would never pay to go into the movies. There was so many of us you would be stupid to try and stop one. Even at the stores in the same area we would steal every 40oz of Old English 800 by just picking them up and walking out. We would be responsible for 75% of the dirt committed up there. As for the department stores we hit; Macy's, B'Altman's, Bloomingdales, Saks Fifth Avenue, Trump Towers, Century 21, BFO, and like I mentioned before even Mc Donalds. Our main target was Polo, either putting it in back packs or stuffing it down girdles. Most of the time there was so many of us, we would just rush the store and take all you can carry. Leathers and shearlings stores were wrecked also along with women gear stores. This would always be the quickest shit selling and that was how a lot of heads made their money. One thing we still all had in common was the love for true "hip-hop" . We would go to a lot of the most popular hip-hop clubs. We never paid for drinks, we would steal the bottles from behind the bar and stay drunk all night for free. We usually left the club after getting into some shit or taking somebody's shit. A lot of the things we did resulted in consequences. Many Lo-Lifes were in and out of jail for long periods of time. Regardless, of whatever situation the Lo-Life Ralph Lauren lifestyle remained the same. In prison, official heads wore so much Polo in jail as in the streets. You had to be a real nigga to be able to keep your Polo in the prison system where inmates would rob eachother for expensive clothing. Empire Skating Rink in Brooklyn was were we met every Sunday. The Rink would close about 5p.m. Lo-Lifes would unite out front and walk toward the subway headed to Manhattan to get paid. The "ill" shit was the entire skating rink on Sundays was composed of boosters. It was a big fashion show. After awhile when we would leave on Sunday other boosters in the rink knew where we were headed and what we were up to. So, alot of others would follow us and add on to the chaos. Everybody wanted to be down and every Sunday was a repeat of the week before. Except for one week we said we would hit the stores in Manhattan before the skating rink open on Sunday morning. So we went to Manhattan, had a quick rush at Lord and Taylor's for all kinds of flavor Polo bathrobes. Then we went to Empire, there was at least 40 of us in the middle of the day at the skating rink wearing bathrobes. Of course we always got the girls. They even got with the program so we had Lo-Wives. Boostin was a sport and source of income and from the way some turned out 10 years later it is all they may ever know. In the streets we weren't always the culprits. We were preyed upon as well by jealous people who wanted what we had (our Lo) and didn't know how to get it the way we did. In conclusion, some of us were killed and some of them killed and so on. Ten years later traces of Lo-Lifes spread to California and even Japan. Rappers are getting free "Tommy Hilfiger" to advertise and were still wondering whatever gave D-Lo the idea for their clothing line? Hmmm, it was original Lo-Lifes who started using the word Lo after their names. "The Million Man Rush" is what we call our story just like the "Million Man March", a movement many claimed to be apart of. Only a chosen few can say "I was there".
Underground Rap MC Great: Thirstin Howl 3rd Lo
Lo-Lifes Beach Party
Lo-Lifes Sporting All FILA Suits
Lo-Lifes At Coney Island - Bklyn, NY
Lo-Lifes Basketball Team
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The Lo Lifes:The Late 80's Infamous Brownsville & Crown Heights, Brooklyn Street Gang
The Lo Lifes:The Late 80's Infamous Brownsville & Crown Heights, Brooklyn Street Gang
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