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Hip Hop Music History: 1990s

Updated on July 01, 2016

Deathrow

Death Row members Snoop Dogg, Dr. Dre, Tupac and Suge Knight are pictured in this photo from 1996.
Death Row members Snoop Dogg, Dr. Dre, Tupac and Suge Knight are pictured in this photo from 1996. | Source

Who?

Which is your favorite rapper among the choices below?

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Deathrow Records

Deathrow records was founded and ran by Suge Knight and Dr. Dre. Once the famous rap group N.W.A broke up Death Row was formed. Dr. Dre rapped but primarily made the beats that helped take hip hop to the next level. Among the entertainers that joined Death Row were 2 Pac, Nate Dogg, RBX, Dre, Snoop Dogg, Dogg Pound and several others. This conglomerate was the biggest in hip hop for years and they were mainly known as gangsta rappers.

Eventually, Dr. Dre left the label and founded Aftermath Records. Dre signed Eminem and 50 Cent to secure himself for life. Some of rap history's best songs were performed by Tupac and Snoop Doggy Dogg. Many people rate 2 ac as the best hip hop artist ever and besides his solo career he also performed as a group with Thug Life.

P. Diddy

Sean Combs AKA Diddy is the owner of Bad Boy Entertainment among several other companies including Sean Jean which is his clothing and cologne line.
Sean Combs AKA Diddy is the owner of Bad Boy Entertainment among several other companies including Sean Jean which is his clothing and cologne line. | Source

Bad Boy's Top Artists

Notorious Big
Shyne
Lil Kim
112
Junior Mafia
Carl Thomas
Craig Mack
8 Ball & MJG
Gorilla Zoe
 
Lil John
 
Ten of Bad Boy's best artists.

Bad Boy Entertainment

Bad Boy Records is owned by Puff Daddy/ Diddy. Along with Death Row, Bad Boy has had some big time hip hop artists such as Notorious Big, Mase, Lil Kim, 8 Ball & MJG and Craig Mack just to name a few. When Biggie died Diddy came out with a song called "I'll be missing you" and it was sung by P. Diddy and Faith Evans who was Biggie's lady. Call him Puff Daddy, P. Diddy, Diddy or Sean Combs but remember that he is probably the most mainstream and known name on this list along with maybe Snoop Dogg.

Diddy wound up becoming a billionaire and having his own cologne, vodka and clothing line among many other things including his music and movie roles. As far as Bad Boy goes besides rap the label also had lots of the top women from r and b attached to it.

Biggie and Tupac

2 Pac and Biggie were the biggest rap artists of the 90's and their murders were tragic. R.I.P. Tupac Shakur and Christopher Wallace.
2 Pac and Biggie were the biggest rap artists of the 90's and their murders were tragic. R.I.P. Tupac Shakur and Christopher Wallace. | Source

2Pac Music CD on Amazon

Tupac & Biggie

Tupac and the Notorious Big were not only the biggest rap stars of the 90's but they are both in the top few rap artists of all time as well. They had pure talent and they were excellent artists but unfortunately the two one time friends ended up beefing hard and making diss songs against each other. Both artist had huge singles, albums and videos. Tupac represented the West Coast (California) while Biggie was doing it big for his hometown of Brooklyn, NY on the east coast.

The two legends of rap were both killed by gunfire and will be sorely missed forever. Biggie Smalls was a terrific rap artist and 2 Pac became so famous that he starred in several movies before his death.

Jay Z & Nas

Jay Z and Nas went from bitter New York rivals to friends as evidenced by this photo. Jay Z eventually married r and b diva, Beyonce.
Jay Z and Nas went from bitter New York rivals to friends as evidenced by this photo. Jay Z eventually married r and b diva, Beyonce. | Source

Jay Z & Nas

Jay Z and Nas Escobar both hail from Brooklyn, New York so a feud was bound to eventually happen between the two stars of east coast rap. They both made songs against each other that only intensified the beef. Jay Z owns Roc-a- Fella Records and has a smooth flow without a doubt but on the flip side of the coin you got Nas. This guy can freestyle with anyone at anytime on the drop of a dime.

Jay Z went on to success in all kinds of businesses including alcohol and boxing promotion. Not to mention he has a huge clothing line and he married Beyonce. Nas had a movie role in Belly which was an outstanding performance.


Andre 3000 & Big Boi (OutKast)

OutKast came out of Georgia and took the rap world by storm. The duo consisted of Andre 3000 and Big Boi, two down south rap stars who knew how to flow.
OutKast came out of Georgia and took the rap world by storm. The duo consisted of Andre 3000 and Big Boi, two down south rap stars who knew how to flow. | Source

The Best of the Rest

Besides the aforementioned fighters the 90s decade produced many other rap groups and solo artists and many of them are still excelling in the 2000's. Some of the top 90s rappers include: OutKast, Ice Cube, Easy E, L.L. Cool J, Master P, MC Eight, 8 Ball, UGK, Lil Wayne. Wayne is doing it big years later in 2015 and 8 Ball and MJG have some classics that will never fade such as: Just Like Candy and Don't Flex.

Some artists started out in the 80s and still make music over 25 years later. Artists such as Too Short, Scarface and LL Cool J.

* I would love to know who your favorite hip hop artist and rap group is. Please leave your opinions in the comments capsule located at the bottom of this music article.


Master P

Master P founded No Limit Records and went from nothing to the top dog in the late 90's. P. Miller had his name in everything including: films, music, clothing and shoes.
Master P founded No Limit Records and went from nothing to the top dog in the late 90's. P. Miller had his name in everything including: films, music, clothing and shoes. | Source

Tupac- Changes (Video)

Dr. Dre & Snoop Dogg (Music Video)

Final Comments...........

The origin of hip hop can be traced to the 70s and in the 80s it got big in America. The 1990s, however, is when rap took off and became known all over the world. Rap continues to grow and eventually it will be the single largest music genre, in my opinion. If you look at where rap was in the 70s/80s and how far it came in the 90s. Now fast forward to 2015 and it is on par with rock, pop and country as the best selling music on the market.

Birthplace of Dr. Dre (Compton, CA)

P Daddy & Faith Evans Video)

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