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Roots & Influences

Artist Song Buy
Iceberg Slim  Mama Debt Part I   buy on itunes
Lightnin' Rod  Sport   buy on itunes
Curtis Mayfield  Freddie's Dead (Theme from 'Superfly')   buy on itunes
Rudy Ray Moore  Dolemite   buy on itunes
James Brown  The Payback   buy on itunes
Marvin Gaye  Trouble Man   buy on itunes
Run-DMC  Jam-Master Jay   buy on itunes
Eric B. & Rakim  My Melody   buy on itunes
Boogie Down Productions  9Mm Goes Bang   buy on itunes
N.W.A.  Gangsta Gangsta   buy on itunes
Ice-T  High Rollers   buy on itunes
LL Cool J  Around the Way Girl   buy on itunes
Mobb Deep  Shook Ones, Pt. II   buy on itunes
Makaveli  Against All Odds   buy on itunes
The Notorious B.I.G.  Who Shot Ya   buy on itunes


50 Cent may have stacked chips in the club, but he got his seed money in the streets. Always a diligent student, he soaked up game by digging older gods like Iceberg Slim, who provided the reformed mack image, blue wit, and red-light jazz that blazed a path for 50 to spin his "Ghetto Qua'ran." A disciple of Jam Master Jay, 50 learned the importance of both the old school and honey-sticky hooks early on. But it was LL Cool J whose "Around the Way Girl," with its candy-girl come-ons and nursery-rhyme-worthy melody, established the sensitive-thug template that 50 perfected. At his core, 50 is the Queens-raised street disciple weaned on the grizzled and bullet-scarred rap of the mid-'90s; lurking behind limo-tinted glass is the spirit of Mobb Deep's "Shook Ones, Part II," with its jagged horror-flick synths and grime-caked drums. Yet 50's always been so much more — interpreting the roly-poly syllable slaps of the Notorious B.I.G., the nihilistic fury of N.W.A., the raunchy humor of Dolomite, and the warrior-philosopher mentality of Makaveli.
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