3 The Hard Way is responsible for one of the most recognisable anthems in Kiwi music - 'Hip Hop Holiday', which was an instant success in 1994, spending five weeks at number one and peaking in the Australian charts at number five. The trio (Chris Maiai, Lance Manuel and Mike Paton), released their platinum-selling debut album, Old School Prankstas, the same year. After extensive touring, then a six-year break, the band released Eyes On The Prize in 2003, featuring number one single 'It's On'.
Set in cowboy bar/truckstop 'The Cask Cleaver Rodeo Restaurant and Cabaret' and opening with a woman riding a mechanical bull, this clip is classier than a Kylie Minogue lingerie commercial. Minogue's people obviously drew the line at drunken bar room brawls complete with smashing glassware and a stage cage. Later the partying moves to a limousine. James Barr's clip is simple yet slick, and lit with a warm golden palette. Even the violent bar brawl seems somehow mellow.
Shot in sepia tones with barely a level camera angle on offer, the video for 3 The Hard Way’s single has classic hip hop video written all over it. A cruise around Auckland in the back of a convertible culminates in a guest verse from Bobbylon of Hallelujah Picassos. Back at home, a rugby-loving audience assembles for the song’s second half. The unforgettable hook is inspired by 10cc hit 'Dreadlock Holiday', which proved lucrative for the English band when there were issues around clearing the rights. This was one of the earliest NZ On Air-funded videos for a song that reached number one.