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My Favorite Hip Hop Albums

Note the title of the post folks, I am not saying the greatest, though the Biggie is both, or the best selling, or the best selling. I am only claiming that this list is my fave hip hop, really rap, albums.

1. Ready To Die – Notorious B.I.G. – Nobody has the flow Biggie had, nobody has Biggie's voice (Rick Ross? Don't make me laugh), nobody could tell a story, use humor, on his very next (and final) album, he would reinvent the sample, and by the suicide that ends this album, Biggie put a stake in the heart of rap and rebuilt it in his own image. Nobody else has come close. Particularly the humor.

2. The Big Story – Big L – If all Big L did in his short, awesome career was "Ebonics" his place in hip hop history would be secure. This post-humous album isn't quite as good as his first album, Lifestylez Ov Da Poor And Dangerous, but we're talking favorites and this one doesn't just have the aforementioned, it also has "'98 Freestyle", the best freestyle ever recorded.  

3. My Beautiful Dark Fantasy – Kanye West – West made a mistake her, he should have made a double and included all the Good Friday tracks he dropped. He may never get everything this right again and then top itt off with "Runaway". But I said something similar about 808s And Heartbreaks

4. Fear Of A Black Planet – Public Enemy – Not only is this a great statement (and a brother to "Do The Right Thing"), it is filled with hit singles and political manifestos, it is a rock opera, a call to arms, and with the title track the most succinct explanation of whites fear and hatred of blacks.

5. The Eminem Show – Eminem – This is a victory lap, after two great albums, here he is just showing off. The sense of an artist at the peak of his powers is overwhelming and the public reaction was like the second coming of Elvis. Plus, with "Square Dance" he managed to write a brilliant political put down of the US President. PS: it was also a swan song, I saw him on the tour and he was a mess. EMinem isn't that guy now.

6. The Chronic – Dr. Dre – Not only did this album introduce us to Snoop, it also made the youngest member of NWA the greatest member of NWA. So just chill… Not available from Itunes or Spotify.

7.  Hard Knock Life, Vol 2- Jay-Z – What ever you wanna say about Jigga, and I can think of a coupla choice words, with the title track he finished what Biggie began on his final album and brought hip hop right to America's doorstep.

8. Licensed To Ill – The Beastie Boy – Socially reprehsensible, hard rocking beats by New York teens.

9. Straight Outta Compton – N.W.A. – Public Enemy were like college kids who'd just discovered Malcolm X, N.W.A. were like Bloods who were rapping in their spare time.

10. All Eyez On Me – 2Pac – A double, not album, CD. of astounding consistency in a genre known for being mostly filler. "How Do You Want It"? "I Ain't Mad At Cha"? This is a thug's life, live with it. Or die trying.

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