I was chilling with my homie from back in the day, a rap head in his own right. We got talking about some of the rap classics in 9ja rap industry which gave birth to this beautiful piece that got me emotional and gave breath to my love for good rap music once again.
These are some must-have rap albums for every hip hop lover.
Malcom IX (Modenine): This is the album that really opened my eyes to hip hop in 9ja, and gave me hope that deep dope rappers do exist in 9ja. Illest punchlines ever, coldest flows and sickest delivery, Mode9 showed us just how ugly it really can get, lyrically. This album also introduced his Swat Roots dope team with Overdose (OD) and Terry tha rapman venomously spitting on some tracks.
Da Trybes All Stars (Da Trybe): LD, Freestyle, KB- the original trybesmen, along with their team of fresh emcees and femcees, released this viral mixtape that put Lagos on the front page of rap. 2Shot, SID, Timi (the black one), Blaise, Sasha and Niyola also premiered on this album. Oya, Emi Ma Le Gan and an arsenal of bangers filled this album.
Thy Album Come (RuggedMan): Defiant and unapologetic, Ruggedman is probably the first rapper to really bring rap to the mainstream in 9ja. Born out of frustration, his break-out single “Ehen” featuring Nomoreloss, was a funny diss to every wack musician getting the shine he believed he deserved. The follow-up “Peace Or War” was equally undeniably consistent. A must-have album.
Talk About It (MI): This is by far the best rap album to come out of 9ja. The Short black boy and J-town lyricist bridged the gap between commercial and conscious music with this album and got even club girls rapping along with him. MI might just be one of those rappers who’ll never be able to top the success of their debut album, like 50 cent but I trust him. This album gave us hits like Safe, a parody of some of the biggest hits when it dropped. Lyrically ingenious, commercially on point, MI raps with the coldest flows and made it look and sound effortless not forgetting the best hooks. This album also premiered his clique, Ice-prince(who was already a familiar name in his city), Jesse Jagz (brother/producer), and Wizkid (the future).
MoneyLong Mixtape (Sauce-kid): Sauce-kid(now Sinzu) dropped this hot mixtape that got the industry shook. Playful yet serious, commercial yet conscious, this was just a dope one. Sanboribobo, Omoge, Round Here, are tips of the iceberg on this mixtape.
Pain Plus Work (Gino): One third of a mega talented family, Gino’s No Be God video paved the way for the state of the art music videos we have now. This album was near perfection. Lyrically wild, and production-wise, Sossick gave this album his best and tore up the damn beats. Tracks like Farabale and a host of others are just undescribable, you have to taste them first hand.
C.E.O. (Dagrin): Some have compared the late Dagrin to 50 cent, 2pac and even Biggie. This album is a must-have. Spitting grimey lyrics on banging beats, Dagrin was ahead of his time. With tracks like PonPon, Ghetto dreams, Kondo, His music was like drugs to the ears, and kept you fiending for more. So sad his life was cut short. His songs and several features attest to his greatness. A must-have album, must-cram lyrics, must-spread hustle, this has to be a hall-of-famer.
Gongo Aso (9ice): Alapomeji as he’s fondly called, 9ice dropped this MTV award winning album and the rest is history. Not exactly a rap album but undeniably one of the best albums ever to grace the 9ja music industry, every track took us on a journey through this man’s hustle. Gongo Aso took 9ja hostage. Street Credibility, Party Rider, Bachelor, this album is packed full. You don’t wonna mistakenly skip a track.
These are undisputably some of 9ja rap greats. Some other classics to have are Face-2-Face (2 Face), Asa (Asa), Game-Over (P Square) and Run-Down (D’banj).