Everyone loves music and top-ten lists, and I am no different. This time I am putting the Bay Area back on the map, highlighting the ten most prominent, not to mention my personal favorite, rappers/rap groups to bump-the-bass to from our very own Bay Area. Stand up!
Founded out of Oakland Ca. by Del the Funkee Homosapien, Hiero has been churning out funky jazz-inspired beats with razor sharp lyrical delivery since the early 90s. With nine members in total, Hieroglyphics roles deep in the Bay Area underground rap scene.
2. Too $hort
A Bay Area favorite, Too Short started his rap career out of Oakland Ca. at the age of 14-years-old and has sold 11 million albums in the US alone. He has collaborated with such rappers as Tupac Shakur, Jay-Z, and Notorious B.I.G. Now 44-years-old, Too Short is still putting slap in car trunks with no end in sight.
3. Tupac Shakur
Although born in New York, Tupac Amaru Shakur moved with his family to Marin City in 1988. He sold 75 million records world wide and is one of the best-selling artists in the world. Tupac Shakur’s rap career was cut short in 1995 with he was shot and killed in Las Vegas at the age of 25-years-old.
A rap duo from Oakland Ca. consisting of Yukmouth and Numskull, Luniz became famous around the world for their hit song “I Got 5 On It.”
5. Mac Dre
Mac Dre, aka Andre Louis Hicks, is the godfather of the Bay Area hyphy movement. Originating out of Vallejo Ca., Mac Dre started rapping in the late 80s and early 90s. Like so many other rappers, Andre Hicks’ life was cut short when he was shot and killed in 2004 in Kansas City Missouri.
6. The Coup
The Coup is a political rap group from Oakland Ca. that has been around since the early 1990s. Their lyrics are cynical, humorous, and often criticize police brutality and capitalism.
7. Digital Underground
Digital Underground was an alternative rap group from Oakland Ca. lead by Humpty Hump, aka Shock G. Formed in 1987, Digital Underground sampled lots of funk as did many West Coast rappers of the era.
8. Andre Nickatina
Andre Nickatina is a rapper from San Francisco Ca. that has been around since the early 90s. In 2005 he was voted “Best Local Hip Hop Legend” by SFweekly.
9. Souls of Mischief
Souls of Mischief is a faction of Hieroglyphics that includes A-Plus, Opio, Phesto, and Tajai.
10. MC Hammer
All I have to say is, “U Can’t Touch This.”