Search Results: gangsta-rap

  • Styles P

    David Styles (born November 28, 1974), better known by his stage name, Styles P, is an American rapper, author, and entrepreneur. He is prominently known as a member of Hip Hop group The LOX and is also a part of the Ruff Ryders hip-hop group, and in addition has released multiple albums and mixtapes as a solo MC.

    Styles P, a member of The LOX and the larger D-Block Hip-Hop collective, grew up in Yonkers, New York rapping alongside Jadakiss (Jason Phillips) and Sheek Louch (Shawn Jacobs). In their late teens the trio met Mary J. Blige who was so impressed with their tough street east coast lyrics, she gave them a big break by putting their demo in the hands of Sean “Diddy” Combs. Diddy immediately hired the trio to write for Bad Boy Records. With the label, The LOX quickly started collaborating on hits with Diddy, the Notorious B.I.G., Mary J. Blige, and Mariah Carey which gave them instant notoriety and status within the hip-hop and mainstream charts.

    In 1996 and 1997, the group wrote and performed on a number of Diddy hits, including "It's All About the Benjamins" and "I Got the Power", Mase's "24 Hrs. to Live", Mariah Carey's "Honey", the Notorious B.I.G.'s "Last Day", and Mary J. Blige's "Can’t Get You Off My Mind". In 1997 The LOX received international acclaim when their tribute to the late Biggie Smalls, "We’ll Always Love Big Poppa", was picked as the B-side track from Diddy’s No Way Out album (3x Platinum) with the number one hit, "I'll Be Missing You". This single was the most played hit in 1997, which opened the door for The LOX first solo album debut in January 1998 entitled Money, Power & Respect (Certified Platinum). Though the album was a chart toping success, The LOX felt the glossy image of Bad Boy Records conflicted with their grimier rap aesthetic and therefore cut their ties and moved on to Ruff Ryder Records. After another LOX album, We Are the Streets (2000) and appearing on albums with Ruff Ryders, Styles released his first solo album, A Gangster and a Gentleman, in 2002. Four years later he released his second album Time is Money on Ruff Ryders which was followed by Super Gangster (Extraordinary Gentleman) a year later. After recording many mixtapes Styles returned to the Hip-Hop scene by releasing two retail albums in 2010, The Green Ghost Project with DJ Green Lantern on Invasion Records and The Ghost Dub-Dime a retail mixtape on E1 Records (formally Koch Records). His fourth album Master of Ceremonies is a return to solo form after many years.

    Styles P released his first novel Invincible in 2010 through Random House Publishing Group. In 2011 he opened up a juice bar in Bronx, New York called Juices for Life with his business partners Nyger Rollocks and Leo Galvez. He finished his EP with Curren$y titled, #The1st28 which was released on February 28, 2012. Read more
  • Kurupt

    Ricardo Emmanuel Brown (born November 23, 1972), better known by his stage name Kurupt, also known as Kurupt Tha Kingpin, Kurupt Young Gotti or Young Gotstra is an American rapper and former Executive Vice President of Death Row Records. He is a member of the rap group Tha Dogg Pound, and is mostly known for his work with Death Row Records. He is also a member of the hip-hop supergroup The HRSMN.

    Kurupt was signed to Death Row Records in the early '90's, making up a core roster that consisted of himself, Daz Dillinger, Lady of Rage, Snoop Dogg and RBX, led musically by Dr. Dre. These artists gained maximum exposure by appearing on Dre's breakthrough album, The Chronic, during which Kurupt and Daz developed a close working relationship. After forming two-man crew Tha Dogg Pound, they were heavily featured on Snoop's debut Doggystyle, even given their own song alongside Rage, "For All My Niggaz & Bitchez."

    After the signing of Tupac Shakur to Death Row in September 1995, a rivalry was sparked between Death Row and the east coast's Bad Boy Entertainment. Death Row became a divided label, with Suge Knight demanding every rapper on the label diss an assortment of east coast artists hailing from or affiliated with Bad Boy. Having already thrown in on the Ruthless Records/Death Row conflict, Kurupt and Daz joined in the feud with their single "New York, New York," featuring Snoop Dogg; the song was interpreted as a diss against NYC and although it did not diss anyone specifically, it incited the response "L.A., L.A." by NY rappers Capone-N-Noreaga, Mobb Deep & Tragedy Khadafi. The duo's album, Dogg Food, became highly successful, despite being the first Death Row release not produced by Dr. Dre. Dr. Dre did, however, mix the album.

    The time after Dogg Food's release was a hectic one for Death Row. Artists discouraged by the rising conflict included RBX, who left the label; Lady of Rage, whose project was continually postponed; and Dr. Dre himself, who began to resent Suge's controversial strong-arm tactics and thirst for the spotlight. When Dre jumped ship for Aftermath Entertainment, Daz became the main producer for Death Row, handling much of 2Pac's All Eyez on Me and Snoop Dogg's Tha Doggfather, on which Kurupt was featured relatively sparingly, in contrast to his former high profile on label projects.

    2Pac's 1996 murder began a mass exodus of artists from Death Row Records. Kurupt was one of the first to leave, preceded only by Nate Dogg; he initially signed with A&M, on which he founded an imprint, Antra Records. It was through this deal Brown released his debut solo album Kuruption! in 1998, with appearances by Dr. Dre, Buckshot, and former foe N.O.R.E. The video for the single, "Ask Yourself a Question" was directed by writer-journalist-filmmaker Barry Michael Cooper (who wrote the screenplays for "New Jack City", "Sugar Hill", and "Above The Rim"); it featured Dr. Dre, producer of the song. The video was filmed in Philadelphia, Pa., in November, 1998.

    Though the double-disc effort featured only a bit of Daz production, he and his former groupmate were still on good terms; when Dillinger followed in his tracks and left Death Row in 1999, he produced several tracks for his groupmate's second album Tha Streetz Iz a Mutha, marking the end of Kurupt's tenure at Antra. The record featured a widespread diss track called "Calling Out Names," on which Kurupt called out various rappers, including DMX, accusing the east coaster of having an affair with his then fiance Foxy Brown. During this time, he linked up with fellow Californian Ras Kass, Wu-Tang Clan-affiliate Killah Priest and former Universal Records wonder Canibus to form a group called The HRSMN; despite repeated promises of an album, the group's only release has been an unfinished white label.

    While Suge owned rights to Tha Dogg Pound name, Kurupt and Daz formed the core of an extended family called DPG (Dogg Pound Gangstaz)/DPGC (Dogg Pound Gangsta Crips), the latter of which also prominently featured Nate Dogg, Snoop Dogg, Soopafly, and others intermittently. Daz and Kurupt went on to release Dillinger & Young Gotti under the name DPG, which garnered lukewarm reviews. Kurupt's following solo album for Artemis Records, Space Boogie: Smoke Oddessey, fared better, with production from Daz and up-and-coming producer Fredwreck; his then-fiancee, the late Natina Reed, provided the hook for the single "It's Over."

    After an unofficial remix/compilation Dogg Pound album called 2002 in early 2002, questions began to arise as to the status of Tha Dogg Pound vs. Death Row. While the duo officially said they weren't sure, Kurupt signed back to Death Row in exchange for the role of Vice President. This apparently shocked his groupmates, especially Daz, who'd had a much more volatile falling-out with Knight; a verbal war erupted wherein Kurupt and Daz repeatedly dissed each other viciously, on records and in interviews. While this was going on, Kurupt was mentoring a new roster of Death Row artists, including Spider Loc, Crooked I, and Eastwood; he also began work on his next album, Against tha Grain, and formed a new group: The Riflemen, consisting of Kurupt, Mobb Deep, Jayo Felony, 40 Glocc, and The Alchemist, though the possibility of a record from this ensemble has seemingly faded over time.

    More hurt by the conflict than he let on, Kurupt continued to work disses into his solo album; a bootleg version of the project, Originals, was released in 2004 after repeated delays of its official release, as well as those of Crooked I and other Death Row artists. In 2005, Snoop Dogg began acting as a diplomat between the two parties, and Tha Dogg Pound reunited under its original moniker in April of that year at a west coast unity event hosted by Snoop. Against tha Grain was released, but by that time Kurupt had already left the label a second time, and publicly denounced the disses inherent in the record; an EP called Against tha Grain E.P. has also surfaced, containing said disses to his cohorts. Since their reunion, Kurupt has claimed both members got over their previous problems with no issue.

    Kurupt and Daz released Dillinger & Young Gotti II: The Saga Continuez in 2005, Cali iz Active (as DPG with Snoop Dogg) in 2006, and Dogg Chit in 2007; while he originally touted Dogg Chit as the heir to Dogg Food's legacy, he has since stated that none of the group's intermittent releases are to be considered actual albums more like mixtapes, and that the upcoming 100 Wayz (originally titled Westcoast Aftershocc) is to be considered the second actual Dogg Pound release. '06 also saw the release of Snoop Dogg's album Tha Blue Carpet Treatment, on which Kurupt appeared. After putting out Digital Smoke with J. Wells, Brown also released an album with his younger brother Roscoe entitled The Frank and Jess Story. Kurupt appeared on Snoop Dogg's 2008 album Ego Trippin'.

    Before 100 Wayz, Tha Dogg Pound's Gangsta Grillz mixtape was released, hosted by DJ Drama; followed by an album called BlaQKout with DJ Quik due out on April 28, 2009 the single for which, "Fuck Y'all," is a diss to former Quik partners AMG, Hi-C and 2nd II None.

    Kurupt has been featured on many tracks with other independent artists over the last few years and released his first solo album in four years, Streetlights, on April 20, 2010. Kurupt is currently recording with MC Eiht, King T, Jayo Felony, B.G. Knocc Out, Tha Chill, and Sir Jinx for a hip hop group project called "1st Generation".

    Kurupt’s plans for 2012 include the release of the long anticipated HRSMN album, 'The Academy' album which is a compilation album of collaborations between various artists and a guest feature on the single ‘Hey Girl’ alongside Joell Ortiz (Slaughterhouse) and Big Dave (rapper) taken from Big Dave’s debut album ‘Self Made’. Following the death of his son's Tren's mother Natina Reed in a tragic car accident in Atlanta, planed to release the DJ Nik Bean-hosted mixtape, Money, Bitches, Power on Nov. 7, 2012 but it was delayed. The mixtape will feature E-40, Crooked I, Masta Killa, RBX, Ty $, The Rejectz and more. Kurupt is also preping his next studio album and the next Dogg Pound album Alumni.
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  • Jadakiss

    Jason Phillips (born May 27, 1975), better known as Jadakiss, is an American rapper. He is a member of the group The LOX. (a member of the hip hop collective Ruff Ryders) Jadakiss is one of the three owners of the imprint known as D-Block. In early 2007, Jadakiss signed to Roc-a-Fella Records / Def Jam Records.

    Kiss Tha Game Goodbye is the first studio album by rapper Jadakiss through the Ruff Ryders/Interscope records. It was released in 2001. It was certified Gold by the RIAA on September 21st, 2001.

    Kiss of Death is the 2004 album by rapper Jadakiss. It is the follow-up to his 2001 gold selling debut album Kiss Tha Game Goodbye. "Kiss of Death" was released in the US on the 22nd of June and reached #1 on both the Billboard 200 and the Rap Albums charts. In the UK it peaked at #65. The album features the singles "Time's Up" (with Nate Dogg), followed by the political and world issue crossover hit "Why" (with Anthony Hamilton), "U Make Me Wanna" (with Mariah Carey) and Welcome to D-Block (with Eminem and D-Block). It was certified Gold by the RIAA. The album was more successful than its predecessor Kiss Tha Game Goodbye.

    The Last Kiss is the third studio album from rapper Jadakiss, released April 7, 2009 on D-Block Records, Ruff Ryders Entertainment, Roc-A-Fella Records and Def Jam Recordings, after numerous delays. To date, Jadakiss has released 3 music videos for the singles "By My Side", "Can't Stop Me" and "Who's Real".
    The album debuted at #3 on the Billboard 200, selling 134,520 copies in its first week. As of June 23, 2010 the album has sold 361,747. Jadakiss later responded to the sales, by explaining he was pleased with the album's overall success, and that it has since been attributed to traditional marketing.
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  • Gucci Mane

    Radric Davis (born February 2, 1980), better known by his stage name Gucci Mane, is an American rapper. He debuted in 2005 with Trap House and followed with albums such as Hard to Kill in 2006, Trap-A-Thon and Back to the Trap House in 2007. In 2009, his second studio album The State vs. Radric Davis was released, and The Appeal: Georgia's Most Wanted was released in 2010, and is his highest charting album so far. Gucci Mane has released many other mixtapes and independent albums as well.
    While serving a six-month jail term for assault in late 2005, Davis was charged with murder, though the charges were later dropped due to a lack of evidence. In 2009, he served a year-long county jail sentence for violating probation for his 2005 aggravated assault conviction.

    The year 2005 was like yin and yang for Atlanta bling rapper Gucci Mane. He enjoyed success entering the charts with his first national hit, "Icy," became involved in a quarrel with that song's collaborator, Young Jeezy, and found himself facing murder charges in the Georgia courts. Before his career as a rapper, Gucci Mane, whose birth name is Radric Davis, loved to write poetry when he was in elementary school. He moved to Atlanta from Birmingham, Alabama with his single mother during the fourth grade. Since progressing to rap was a fairly easy step, Gucci Mane had already spent time in a recording studio by the age of 14. The glamour and sense of fashion of rappers like Big Daddy Kane motivated him to put words to music. His locally played debut single, "Black Tee," earned him a contract with Big Cat Records, and in May 2005 the label released his debut album, Trap House, which stood at the number one spot on Billboard's Heatseekers chart.

    The beef with Young Jeezy originated from a fight over the rights to the album's "Icy" hit single, which spawned a number of dis tracks traded between the two. Within the same month of his LP's release, Gucci Mane was arrested for murder following an altercation in which he shot at a group of five men who burst into his friend's house, threatening to kill the rapper. As it turned out, the murdered attacker was an associate of Young Jeezy, who denied any involvement with the incident. Gucci Mane declared in court that it was self-defense, and by January 2006, Georgia prosecutors dropped all charges, citing lack of evidence.

    After being released from jail (on charges unrelated to the murder) that same month, he quickly went back into the studio to make his second album, Hard to Kill, which was released in October. He took the song "Go Head" from his first album and made it the lead single for the second in order to make up for the time taken away from promoting Trap House. The State Vs. Radric Davis, his second official album, was released in December 2009 following a dizzying array of mixtapes. The Appeal: Georgia's Most Wanted followed in 2010 with guest shots from Estelle, Nicki Minaj, and Wyclef Jean. Featuring the single “Mouth Full of Gold” with special guest Birdman, the “street album” The Return of Mr. Zone 6 followed in 2011, along with two collaborative albums, "1017 Bricksquad Presents...Ferrari Boyz" with Waka Flocka Flame and Baytl with V-Nasty.
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