KRS-One would soon position himself as a teacher, but rather than the empowerment messages the rapper would become known for, this track is a gritty "dis record" aimed at a rival. According to KRS, one of his friends played some demos for Mr. Magic, and the noted radio DJ pronounced them wack. "We was like, 'What? Are you crazy? MC Shan is wack, not me.' And I went home and wrote 'South Bronx.'" The crew then went into the studio and cut the track in two hours for $50 because that was how much money they had.