T Nation

Intro to Rap/Hip-Hop


I'm 33, and fairly new to the genre. I have previously only listened to rock/metal. This past year I've been listening to more and more rap and hip-hop. I currently only have a small handful of musicians and songs. Mostly Jay-Z and Eminem.

Are there specific artists/albums/songs I must listen to? Thanks for your help.


Gangstarr - Moment of Truth

A Tribe Called Quest - Beats Rhymes and Life


Enter the Wu-Tang: 36 Chambers
All of the Wu Tang's first solo albums, plus Supreme Clientele and Fishscale by the Ghostface Killah and Only Built 4 Cuban Linx II from Raekwon
Quality Control and Power by Numbers by Jurassic 5
anything by the Roots
anything by the Hieroglyphics
most of Jay-Z's stuff
Illmatic by Nas
Black Sunday and Temples of Boom by Cypress Hill
Conversation with a Devil by Andre Nickatina
anything by Gang Starr
the Low End Theory by A Tribe Called Quest
The Inevitable Rise and Liberation of Niggy Tardust by Saul Williams
anything by De La Soul
Fear of a Black Planet and It Takes a Nation of Millions to Hold Us Back by Public Enemy
Back for the First Time by Ludacris
Genesis and Extinction Level Front by Busta Rhymes
The Search Engine by T-Nation





Mobb Deep - The Infamous

Nas - Illmatic

Kool G Rap - 4, 5, 6

Both Dr. Dre CDs

Pharcyde - Bizarre Ride 2

Bone Thugs - E1999 Eternal


Anything by Celph Titled. This guy is the KING of punchlines. Nineteen Ninety Wow, most recent album.

Redman - Malpractice, Muddy Waters

Redman and Method Man - Blackout

Army of the Pharaoahs

Immortal Technique - A MUST. all albums

Pharaohe Monch - Internal Affairs

DB already said Wu-Tang, so I won't go into it again.

Snoop - DOggystyle

Dr Dre - both Chronics...and Detox whenever the fuck he releases it :slightly_smiling:


Black Star
Anything from Talib Kweli or Mos Def
Mobb Deep
Gotta have some Biggie and Pac
If u want something really hardcore try Gravediggaz
WU-TANG and most solo albums from members (my fav GZA)
The Roots


Eric B. & Rakim... start at the top and work your way down.







Geto Boys


Pete rock and CL smooth, a long with the majority of what has been said already


Thanks for the list so far gents.


Robert Goulet - Coconut Bangers Ball, It's a Rap!


You all fail, none of you bothered to mention the best rap album ever created.

Notorious B.I.G. - Ready to Die


I was checking all these off going, yeah, he's on point with his picks, then this one hit, BOOM.

Good work DB




Since you're into metal I imagine you're familiar with the Anthrax/Public Enemy version of Bring the Noise.
Also, Jay Z and Linkin Park did a remix album that you might like.

Hip-hop spans a very broad spectrum of music, lyrics, message, etc. so don't dismiss any of it based on one track or group.

These are some albums that I like:

Black Sheep - A Wolf in Sheep's Clothing
3rd Bass - The Cactus, Derelicts of Dialect
De la Soul - 3 Feet High and Rising
A Tribe Called Quest - The Low End Theory
Porn Theatre Ushers - Taxachusetts
Slick Rick - The Adventures of Slick Rick
Prince Paul - A Prince Among Thieves -He produced a pile of tracks and albums.

Individual tracks you should check out: Dead Prez -Hip Hop, Apathy -It Takes a 7 Nation Army to Hold Us Back, Mac Lethal -Black Widow Spider, Chamillionaire -Hip Hop is Dead


Man, I've tried typing this a handful of times now but my comp keeps crashing before I hit submit. Hope this one makes it, 'cause I'm committed to the cause.

De La Soul- Stakes is High

Biggie- Ready to Die

A Tribe Called Quest- Midnight Maruaders

UGK- Ridin' Dirty

Devin the Dude- Waiting to Inhale

Mobb Deep- The Infamous

Wu-Tang Clan- Enter the 36 Chambers

Eric B and Rakim- Paid in Full

Scarface- The Diary

Mos Def- Black on Both Sides

The Pharcyde- Labcabincalifornia

Dilated Peoples- The Platform

Nas- Illmatic

Paul Wall & Chamillionaire- Get Your Mind Correct

Those are just a handful to get you started. I'd also youtube Big L, AZ, Canibus, The last Emperor, Eyedea, Typical Cats, Big Daddy Kane, KRS-One, the Cunning Lynguists.... I know there are tons I'm forgetting but these are who just popped in my head.


I'm going to the Dipset reunion this month. Can't wait.


2001 - Dr Dre
The Chronic - Dr Dre
Amerikkka's Most Wanted - Ice Cube
Death Certificate - Ice Cube
The Predator - Ice Cube
Straight Outta Compton - NWA
Illmatic - Nas