Community-driven media: Log in or Visit
0 |

The Meaning of Souls of Mischief’s “93 ‘Til Infinity”

“93 ‘Til Infinity” by Souls of Mischief, in addition to being a suitable theme song for this blog, is one of the most memorable songs from the golden era of 90s hip-hop. Released in September 1993 (the month I was born), “93 ‘Til Infinity” was second single and title track from the group’s debut album.

While the album was a sleeper at the time of its release, as it was competing for attention with Dr. Dre’s The Chronic and Snoop Dogg’s Doggystyle, the single “93 ‘Til Infinity” did manage to reach number 72 on the Billboard Hot 100 and has since become known as a verifiable classic.

The laid-back song exemplifies the style of West Coast 90s hip-hop, with a quick but simple beat while the four Souls of Mischief (Tajai, Opio, A-Plus, and Phesto) take turns spitting a series of carefree verses, each varying in length.

And of course, that famous hook: “This is how we chill from 93 ’til” — repeated multiple times throughout the track.

In this way they managed to define themselves as a group, and the song became both their signature song and one of the first songs that comes to mind in the discussion of peak 90s hip-hop. And yes, the Souls of Mischief are still chillin’ to this day.

Origins of “93 ‘Til Infinity”

When the Souls of Mischief created their debut album, they were fresh out of high school, wide-eyed and simply sending demos around to try and get the word out about their music.

Originally, they named the project “91 ‘Til Infinity”, but since the project still wasn’t out in 1992, they changed the title to “92 ‘Til Infinity”. Then, when the record was finally released it was 1993, and thus we ended up with the title “93 ‘Til Infinity” — which has the best ring to it of the three, anyway (it was meant to be).

Souls of Mischief discussed this and the full backstory of the 93 ‘Til Infinity album during an in-depth interview with Spin back in 2013.

Here’s what group member and producer A-Plus says about the original demo:

The original song was called “91 ‘Til Infinity.” We were in high school, just making songs, making demos, trying to get them to send out to people, and it was just a concept for a song. It had a whole different beat. We never really laid the song down, but we wrote verses. Time moved forward and we were working on the album, and we were like, “We should do a “92 ‘Til Infinity.” But the album didn’t come out ’til ’93. So that was that. The other beat was slower, more somber, this was one was more upbeat.

Origins of “93 ‘Til Infinity”, according to Souls of Mischief member A-Plus. Spin, 2013.

The beat features a sample from the 1974 Billy Cobham song, “Heather”, which A-Plus recalls hearing after purchasing the Crosswinds album from the dollar bin.

Back then, we didn’t have any money. People did odd jobs, this and that. So I didn’t have a whole bunch of money to buy records, but I did whenever I could. I found that particular record, it’s a Billy Cobham album called Crosswinds. At that point it wasn’t one of the hot records for people to sample. It didn’t cost hella money, it was in the dollar bin. I just grabbed it, and when I got home, I listened to the sample. I used to listen to my samples on 45, because I didn’t have much sampling time in my sampler. [It was] some cheap shit. [The record is] a little gritty, but listening to it on 45, I was like, “Aw, this’d be dope, I’m gonna make it uptempo.” It was dope, but hip-hop at the time, I was trying to do something faster, a little bit uptempo. I put it together really fast. I didn’t even think it was a big deal, actually, until people were like, “Yo, that’s fucking dope.” It was just another beat.

Origins of “93 ‘Til Infinity”, according to Souls of Mischief member A-Plus. Spin, 2013.

Initially, they go on to explain, the beat was initially intended for fellow Oakland rapper Pep Love, but after A-Plus showed it to the rest of the Souls of Mischief they decided to keep it for themselves instead.

In addition to discussing the song’s background, the Souls of Mischief also touched upon the legacy of “93 ‘Til Infinity” and how it has continued to evolve over time, with younger generations who were born much later than the rappers themselves.

Opio pointed out that the song wasn’t ultra-popular at the time of its release:

That song in particular, as popular as it is now, and how many people know it, you gotta realize that’s over a long period of time. That song, even though it was really popular, and it really made an impact, and a lot of people really loved it, it never got so popular. Like it wasn’t playing on the radio every day. It wasn’t, just, video on all the time. It wasn’t like that. Over the years, that song has just grown and grown and grown, and touched other younger generations.

Opio on the legacy of “93 ‘Til Infinity”, Spin Magazine 2013.

Phesto discussed something that the 90s kids will relate with, and specifically those born in 1993 (like myself):

When I think about it, it’s almost like self-prophecy. We said “93 ’til infinity,” and then the song is still here. Now you have people from younger generations who were born in ’93, and they’re like, “93 ’til infinity.” It means so many different things to so many different people.

Phesto on the legacy of “93 ‘Til Infinity”, Spin Magazine 2013.

At the time of my writing this, another 10 years have passed since the release of “93 ‘Til Infinity”, and us “younger generations” approach and enter our 30s, and another younger generation follows close behind us.

The youth hearing “93 ‘Til Infinity” for the first time in 2023 perhaps don’t have the same connection that the 90s youth would have, but the legacy of the song remains powerful and continues to impact new listeners today.

Watch the music video for the track below, and continue onward for an in-depth lyrical analysis.

“93 ‘Til Infinity” Lyrics Meaning

Now, “93 ‘Til Infinity” has a whole lot of lyrics, which we’ve printed out here in full. Most of them are fairly straightforward, but there are some references and moments of wordplay that may fly over your head if you aren’t up on 90s hip-hop culture, so we’re here to clear things up and help you appreciate this song even more.

Let’s dive into the lyrics, starting with the intro by Tajai:

Yo, whassup? This is Tajai of the mighty Souls of Mischief crew
I’m chillin’ with my man Phesto, my man A-Plus
And my man Op’, you know he’s dope (Yo, yeah, you know what I’m sayin’?)
But right now, y’know, we just maxin’ in the studio (Chillin’)
We hailin’ from East Oakland, California (Yeah)
And, um, sometimes it gets a little hectic out there
(Haha, we just chillin’)
But right now, yo, we gon’ up you on how we just chill

Intro to “93 ‘Til Infinity”, rapped by Tajai.

Tajai introduces the group in the first verse, places them in the studio in their home of Oakland, California. He acknowledges that sometimes life in Oakland can get a little hectic, but for now they’re just chillin’, and they’re here to explain what that looks like for each of them.

Opio hops in with the first verse:

Dial the seven digits, call up Bridgette
Her man’s a midget, plus she got friends, yo, I can dig it
Here’s a 40 — swig it, you know it’s frigid
I got ’em chillin’ in the cooler, break out the ruler
Damn! That’s the fattest stoge I ever seen
The weather’s keen in Cali
Gettin’ weeded makes it feel like Maui
Now we feel the good vibrations
So many females, so much inspiration

First verse to “93 ‘Til Infinity”, rapped by Opio.

Opio mentions calling a girl named Bridgette, who’s got a short man (suggesting she doesn’t respect him) and will bring friends. It’s cold outside, and he offers up a swig of a 40 (oz bottle of beer). Someone’s got a fat stoge (blunt, or cigar filled with marijuana).

The weather’s nice, he’s smoking weed, feeling the “Good Vibrations” (Beach Boys reference), and just having a good day. He’s surrounded by women, and feeling inspired.

A-Plus is up next with the second verse:

I get inspired by the blunts too! (Too)
I’ll front you (You), if you hang with a bunk crew (Chump)
I roam the strip for bones to pick
When I find one, I’m gon’
Take her home and quickly do this (Yep)
I need not explain this (Nah!)
A-Plus is famous, so get the anus

Second verse to “93 ‘Til Infinity”, rapped by A-Plus.

He begins by agreeing with Opio — A-Plus also loves marijuana. He’s down to smoke you out if you hang out with a crew who can’t find their own weed. He describes roaming the streets to find a woman to take home with him, and closes by stating he doesn’t need to explain himself because he’s famous, so you can kiss his ass.

Tajai is back again for the third verse:

Hey, Miss! Who’s there? I’m through there
No time to do hair; the flick’s at eight, so get straight
You look great, let’s grub now
A rubdown sounds flavor, later there’s the theatre (Yeah, that sounds nice)
We in the cut, the cinema was mediocre (It was cool, you know)
Take her to the crib so I can stroke her

Thirds verse to ’93 ‘Til Infinity”, rapped by Tajai.

Much like A-Plus, Tajai describes a similar level of success with women. He encounters one on the street in a hurry, just in time to catch a movie. The movie was disappointing, but he still takes her back to his place.

Phesto makes his first appearance in verse four:

Kids get broke for their skins when I’m in
Close range, I throws game at your dip like handball
‘Cause the man’s all that, all phat
I’m D to chill from ’93 till (Aha!)

Fourth verse to “93 ‘Til Infinity”, rapped by Phesto.

He raps, in mostly slang about how how he steals girls from the other guys by “throwing game at her like handball”. This means he’s quick and nimble with his ability to seduce women, and the other guys simply don’t stand a chance.

After this we get the whole group together for the first hook:

Yeah, this is how we chill from ’93 till (Yeah)
This is how we chill from ’93 till
This is how we chill from ’93 till
This is how we chill from ’93 till
Uh-huh, this is how we chill from ’93 till
This is how we chill from ’93 till
This is how we chill from ’93 till
This is how we chill… from ’93 till

Hook to “93 ‘Til Infinity” by Souls of Mischief.

The Souls of Mischief were chillin in 1993, and they’ll be chillin’ til infinity.

A-Plus is back again with for quick verse:

Huh! My black Timbs do me well (Yeah)
When I see a fool and he says he heard me tell (What?)
Another person’s busy-ness, I cause dizziness
Until you stop actin’ like a silly bitch

Fifth verse to “93 ‘Til Infinity”, rapped by A-Plus.

He’s got a pair of black Timberlands that look real good on him. Then, he encounters a person who heard something about him from someone else, and A-Plus tells him to cut the crap, and don’t bring other people’s business around him.

Phesto’s up next:

Yo, crews are jealous ’cause we get props
The cops wanna stop our fun, but the top
Is where we’re dwellin’, swell and fat, no sleep
I work fit, and jerks get their hoes sweeped
Under their noses, this bro’s quick
To hit blunts and flip once I’m chillin’ ’cause my crew’s close, kid

Sixth verse to “93 ‘Til Infinity, rapped by Phesto.

Both other crews and the police dislike the Souls of Mischief, but it doesn’t matter because they’re headed to the top. Sweeping up the women, hitting blunts and chillin’ with his people.

Tajai raps the seventh verse next:

I’m posted, most kids accept this as cool
I exit, ’cause I’m an exception to the rule (Hell no, I’m out)
I’m steppin’ to the cool spots where crews flock (Yo what’s up, how you doin’?)
To snare a dip, or see where the shit that’s flam-bee
Plan B not as poppin’
So I got tons of indo and go to the Owen’s basement
My ace been fattenin’ up tracks
Time to get prolific with the whiz, kid

Seventh verse to “93 ‘Til Infinity”, rapped by Tajai.

Tajai is cool in a way that most people are. He’s out at all the coolest spots, looking for girls. The party turns out to not be as cool as he hopes, so he leaves with lots of weed and goes to his buddy Owen’s basement to hang out with the crew.

Opio returns for verse eight:

Greenbacks in stacks, don’t even ask
Who got the fat stacks? We can max pumpin’ fat tracks
Exchangin’ facts about impacts, ’cause in facts
My freestyle talent overpowers, brothers can’t hack it
They lack wit, we got the mack shit
’93 to infinity — kill all that wack shit!

Eighth verse to “93 ‘Til Infinity”, rapped by Opio.

He’s got money (“greenbacks”) stacked up, and suggests that you don’t question where it came from. One can assume this is a reference to drug dealing. The rest of the verse is all about his skill as a rapper, meaning that part of what he’s dealing is phat rhymes.

Another hook follows, and then Phesto is up with the ninth verse:

I be coolin’, school’s in session, but I’m fresh in
Rappin’, so I take time off to never rhyme soft
I’m off on my own shit with my own clique
Roll many backroads with a fat stoge and blunts, foldin’ runts
Holdin’ stunts captive with my persona
Plus a bomber, zestin’
Niggas is testin’ my patience, but I stay fresh and

Ninth verse to “93 ‘Til Infinity”, rapped by Phesto.

School’s happening but he’s not going. He’d rather skip and work on his rhymes, do his own thing with the Souls of Mischief. This includes, of course, rolling “backroads”, a brand of cigar often filled with cannabis and smoked as a blunt.

Tajai takes the mic quickly for verse ten:

Restin’ at the mall, attendance on ‘noid (Get off!)
But I am shoppin’ for my wish to exploit
Some few fits, some new kicks
I often do this, ’cause it’s the pits not bein’ dipped

Tenth verse to “93 ‘Til Infinity”, rapped by Tajai.

He describes being at at the mall, perhaps feeling a little paranoid because he’s supposed to be at school. But he needs some fresh gear, and he admits he does this all the time.

Opio raps verse eleven:

Flipped! The flyer attire females desire
Baby, you can step to this if you admire
The exxx-traordinary dapper rapper
Keep tabs on your main squeeze before I tap her

Eleventh verse to “93 ‘Til Infinity”, rapped by Opio.

He’s wearing the “fly attire females desire”, or perhaps flipping that style on its head and coming up with something that ends up being uniquely his own. Thus, is also considered the “flyer attire”, just not the conventional vision of it.

The twelfth and final verse is rapped by A-Plus:

I mack her, attack her with the smoothness
I do this, peepin’ what my crew gets, huh! (Shit)
Loot, props, respect, and blunts to pass
Crews talk shit, but in my face, they kiss my ass (Smack!)
They bite flows, but we make up new ones
If you’re really dope, why ain’t you signed yet?
But I get my loot from Jive/Zomba, I’ma bomb ya
You will see, from now till infinity

Twelfth verse to “93 ‘Til Infinity”, rapped by A-Plus.

Here, A-Plus reasserts the dominance of his crew, and calls out the others who talk smack about them but don’t have a record deal of their own to stand upon. He then mentions the record deal that the Souls of Mischief had signed with Jive/Zomba at the time of the album’s release.

Next we have the final hook before a reference-packed outro that features the whole group taking turns giving shout-outs to their homies from the Oakland-based Hieroglyphics collective:

Haha! Just coolin’ out, y’know what I’m sayin’?
But, but who’s chillin’ around the land, y’know?
Yo, who’s chillin’? I think I know who’s chillin’
Yeah, tell me who’s chillin’ then, A-Plus
Casual — you know he’s chillin’
Yo, Pep Love — he gotta be chillin’
Jay-Biz — you know he’s chillin’
A-yo, man, my — my man Snupe is chillin’, man
Yo, Mike G — you know he’s here chillin’
Yeah, my man Mike P — you know he gotta chill
Del the Funky Homosapien is chillin’
Aye, aye, my man Domino — yo, he’s chillin’
Yeah… and it’s like that to the end (Yeah, like that)
For infinity, you know what I’m sayin’?
’92 is over, ’93, that’s when we rule (We the dopest)
You know what I’m sayin’? Peace

Outro to “93 ‘Til Infinity” by Souls of Mischief.

Shoutouts are given to Pep Love, whom was the intended recipient of the beat. Jay-Biz, a producer who was half the duo The Prose / The Shamen.

We also hear mentions of Extra Prolific members, rapper Duane “Snupe” Lee and producer/DJ Michael “Mike G” Gray.

Finally, they reference Hieroglyphics founder Del the Funky Homosapien, and Domino, another longstanding member of the collective.

They acknowledge the end of 1992 and the presence of 1993, as the year that they rule. Then, they say goodbye and the beat slowly fades away.

Songs that Sample “93 ‘Til Infinity”

Naturally, as one of the most famous 90s hip-hop songs, “93 ‘Til Infinity” has also been sampled by a number of artists over the years. We’ve included a few of our favorite examples below. Let us know of any more we should know about in the comments!

Big K.R.I.T. – “Somedayz” (2010)

J. Cole – “Til Infinity” (2009)

Curren$y – “Lysol” feat. Young Roddy (2008)

Tyga – “09 Until”