What up? This is Dr. J-Febz!
You are now about to witness the strength of nerd knowledge.
A couple of weeks ago, I just got straight outta class to read my Facebook newsfeed only to be blessed with news that an NWA movie titled Straight Outta Compton will hit theatres this August! Then, to add compliment to such discovery, I found out that the offspring of Dr. Dre and Ice Cube will be reppin' their pops' back in the glory days of 90's-era gang life in South Central, Los Angeles.
In lieu of such a cinematic treat, I decided to dedicate this post in honor of the O.G.'s who contributed to such a revolutionary music and cultural genre and name the top 10 Rappers who have deserved their place on more than just the Hollywood Walk Of Fame.
10. 2Pac Shakur
If you think I'm referring to the West Coast's prime vanguard of Gangsta Rap, then 2Pac Shakur is definitely the epitome of that definition. Aside from his infamous feud with Biggie Smalls, his style of rapping will be forever remembered for his rapid flow and in-depth choice of diction.
The best part about this guy was that he was more than just a rapper. To many youth who grew up as Generation-X, Y, or Millenial, he was viewed as much worthy as an icon as any other rapper during the East Coast-West Coast feud.
Sadly, he perished alongside B.I.G. in a drive-by shooting in 1996. Still, if anybody deserves recognition for his work in the biz, it should be the man who taught us the true meaning of California Love.
9. Snoop Doggy Dogg
Bow-wow-wow, yippee-yo, yippee-yay, Doggy Dogg is in the house!
From Long Beach, California, standing at 6'4", and with a record of dropping it like it's hot, it's none other than Snoop Dogg himself! With his laconic Southern drawl and slow, yet easy to keep up with flow, Calvin "Snoop Dogg" Broadus is among the most revered in the game, and it's a very select count-on-one-hand-list of people to count!
With instant club bangers like Who Am I?(What's My Name), Pump Pump, Gz and Hustlaz, and Gin and Juice, Snoop gives us all enough reason to believe why he's the Doggfather of Gangsta Rap. Take that, and his performances with Dr. Dre in the album The Chronic, and already we're talking a recipe for a perfect Throwback Thursday, or whatever!
8. Biggie Smalls (aka Notorious B.I.G.)
The only contender from the East side to hail from New York and have enough guts to beef with Tupac would be none other than Christopher Wallace. Spitting blunt rhymes and with a machine-gun-like funky beat, Wallace proved it was no biggie hustlin' all the way in Bed-Stuy to the top of the East Coast mountain.
Sadly, just like his former friend and rival 'Pac, B.I.G. payed the price for his exuberant lifestyle of the rich and famous, and instead of going under the radar like Robin Leach, he met a bullet-riddled death alongside his former Bad Boy 4 Life.
At least he taught us that the sky's the limit, no matter what.
7. 50 Cent
After being shot 50 times and surviving to tell the tale, the 6-foot Curtis '50 Cent' Jackson showed the entire world that he's more than a lyrical force to be reckoned with. Reasons for including him in such a roster as this would be how he took G-Unit from a simple rap label and turned it into a successful household name.
After working hard in the rap game, at least we know where we'll find Fiddy if he wants to unwind!
Will the Real Slim Shady please stand up?
As a protoge of the immortal Andre Young, Marshal Bruce Mathers III proved to the entire world that a rapper isn't solely defined by their skin-color. Shady burst the new millenium with the release of his debut album The Slim Shady LP, and with numerous awards, lawsuits (two from which was from his mother and ex-wife Debbie), he helped hip-hop fans connect with more than just one level. Now, because of him, white rappers and hip-hop fans can mingle with other hip-hoppers and rappers in unity.
Besides which, he characterized respect the most epic way possible by saying this:
Now, before you guys start hating on me, let me get the record straight: Ice-T will be met with mixed opinions, no doubt. HOWEVER, if anyone deserves as much credit for giving rap and hip-hop a good enough rep it's my man, Ice-T.
For personal reasons, I put him as my inspiration for rap, and as such, his songs had powerful meaning. If you don't believe me, then watch this video of Ice-T and his hit song, Lethal Weapon.
4. Dr. Dre
For Andre "Dr. Dre" Young, it's Nothing But a G Thang when it comes to being a prominent rapper in the music industry. His illustrious career spanning from his days balling with NWA, discovering Eminem, and coming up with the Beats headphones, this guy KNEW what it took to get people coming back for another bumpin' track.
Aaaaaand, we're still waiting on the next Chronic album.
Any day now, Dre?
3. Ice Cube
Representing the legendary dynasty that was NWA, Ice Cube has been through hell and back, even going so far as to send everyone a postcard every now and then.
Known for his incendiary diction and constant targeting of people (ex. white women, President Bush, Koreans), Cube made nationwide infamy when in his days as a member of NWA he kicked off the song "**** the Police" with the opening verse. This alone gave him street cred when even the FBI threatened them to remove the song, and if the Rodney King riots has taught us anything, this song was an understandable means of understanding relations between people and cops back then.
Hey, ain't nothing to it, gangster rap made him do it!
"If you're having girl problems, I feel bad for you son, I got 99 problems.."
If those are the first words to pop into your mind when you think of greatness, then Jay-Z isn't far away from association. Hailing from New York, Jay-Z skyrocketed to fame when he came up with songs like 99 Problems, and as if that wasn't enough, he married the game. And by game, of course I refer to none other than the Bonnie to his Clyde, his Sasha Fierce, Beyonce.
If you don't think this is the case, watch this video, and think again.
Topping off the list of rappers in this article is none other than the heart and soul of NWA himself, Eric Wright, otherwise known as "Eazy-E".
Following his death from AIDS, Eazy rocked the world of rap throughout two decades with hits like We Want Eazy and Boyz In The Hood. As such, the latter song went on to become a brand as well as a popular movie with Ice Cube as one of the lead actors.
Despite not having as good a rapping style as his fellow homies, Eazy-E still paved the way for future rappers in the game.
If you agree and or disagree with this list, please comment below (but be respectful!) For more good stuff, follow me on Instagram @johnnygpanzer and on Twitter @JFrost45.
Peace out, y'all! Try to turn up responsibly this weekend, ya' feel me?