After a timid and loose debut, N.W.A. and the Posse (1987),
Los Angeles' crew N.W.A. (Niggaz With Attitude), featuring
Ice Cube (O'Shea Jackson),
Eric "Eazy-E" Wright,
MC Ren (Lorenzo Patterson)
and Dr Dre (Andre Young),
formalized "gangsta rap"
on Straight Outta Compton (1988) with an aggressive stance that had
few equals in popular music (the MC5 in rock music).
Efil4Zaggin (1991), without Ice Cube, became the first rap album ever to debut in the Billboard charts at number one, despite being quite ridiculous
at its own game.
Two of NWA's former members, Ice Cube (O'Shea Jackson)
with AmeriKKKa's Most Wanted (1990), produced by Hank Shocklee's team,
a total immersion in a nightmarish atmosphere,
and Dr Dre (Andre Young) with The Chronic (1992) and later with
gave the genre its masterpieces.
Dr Dre, who had a hit with the cop-killing Deep Cover, went on to produce the debut album of his pupil Snoop Doggy Dogg.
The latter, heavily influenced by George Clinton's psychedelic funk, also
coined a subgenre called "G Funk".
Ice Cube followed up his masterpiece with a controversial
Death Certificate (1991), that seemed to insult everybody,
The Predator (1992), one of the era's best-sellers,
and Lethal Injection (1993), that contains the 11-minute collaboration
with George Clinton Bop Gun. Then he started another successful
project, Westside Connection, a trio with Mack 10 (D'Mon Rolison)
and W.C. No matter how popular they became, Bow Down (1996) and
Terrorist Threats (2003) were
fundamentally proof that Ice Cube's inspiration had dried up after his
Ice Cube's solo albums
War & Peace Vol 1 (1998),
War And Peace Vol 2: The Peace Disc (2000),
Laugh Now Cry Later (2006),
Raw Footage (2008)
simply confirmed the decline.
His I Am The West (2010) sounded disconnected from both
the music and the issues of his times.
The first member of N.W.A. to go solo, Eric "Eazy-E" Wright,
with Eazy-Duz-It (1988), and probably the crew's most recognizable
character, died of AIDS in 1995.
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