Top 10 Hip-Hop Cliques of All Time
Okay, here it is: top 10 rap cliques of all time. The criteria used to rate and evaluate includes record sales, market penetration, market crossover, legendary status, lyrical abilities, and overall greatness.
10. The Click: The Click is a hip hop group that consisted of 4 members from the bay area of California. The groups members were E-40, B-Legit, D-Shot, and Suga-T. Together the group has released three studio albums with hits that included “Sprinkle Me” and “Ghetto Smile.” The Click will certainly go down as one of the most underrated cliques of all times, no question.
9. The Firm: The Firm was formed in New York City in 1996. It was created by rapper Nas, manager Steve Stoute, producer Dr. Dre, and the Trackmasters. The group was composed of East Coast-based rappers Nas, Foxy Brown, AZ, and Nature, (who replaced Cormega). The Firm produced records that included “Firm Biz” and “Phone Tap” and individually have been extremely prolifically in the rap game.
8. St. Lunatics: The St. Lunatics are a rap group from St. Louis, Missouri formed in 1995. Key group members consisted of Nelly, Ali, and Murphy Lee. Nelly was highly recognized for albums “Country Grammar” and “Nellyville” in addition to his role in the movie “The Longest Yard.” Ali and Murphy Lee were not as widely known, but Nelly certainly carries the weight and makes this group the 8th greatest of all time.
7. Murder Inc: The key members of Murder Inc were Ja Rule, Ashanti, and Lloyd. Ja Rule at one point had the game on lock. He consistently had top 40 billboards hits with songs that included “Holla Holla” and “Always on Time.” Ashanti was also widely popular and at one point considered the hottest R&B female talent during that time. Murder Inc’s decline began when 50 cent hit the scene and snatched the hip-hop crown from his frail hands. But until this happened, It was Murderrrrr..
6. Cash Money Millionaires: Cash Money Millionaires was a group of rappers from New Orleans, Louisiana formed in 1995 and broke up in 2001. The group consisted of Birdman, Juvenile, Lil Wayne, Mannie Fresh, B.G. and Young Turk. The group collectively dropped albums that included “Chopper City in the Ghetto,” “400 Degreez” and “Guerrilla Warfare.” With the exception of Turk, all members of the Cash Money Millionaires had individual success, but due to their lack of movie and fashion exposure in addition to the absence of penetration into pop culture music, they sit soundly at number 6.
5. 504 Boyz: 504 Boyz was a hip-hop group led by Master P. The groups key members consisted of Master P, Mystikal, Silkk The Shocker, and C-Murder. Individually, the rappers had much success with albums that include “Charge it to the Game,” “Ghetto Dope,” and “Unpredictable.” In addition, the 504 Boyz wrote, directed, and produced movies that included “I Got the Hook Up” and “Hot Boyz.” Master P had his own clothing line (P. Miller) and been in multiple films and TV shows since then as well. This clique undoubtedly is one of the most prolific cliques of all time due to their wide palette of success.
4. Junior M.A.F.I.A. The Junior M.A.F.I.A were formed in the early 1990s by New York rapper Biggie Smalls. Other notable members included Lil Kim, Lil’ Cease, and Capone, and the group released their debut album, Conspiracy, in 1995. This group lands at number 4 due to their impact on hip-hop today. The Notorious B.I.G. has had one of the greatest impacts on music then and today, and his lyrical greatness is arguably the greatest of our time if not ever. The Junior Mafia’s impact on music places them securely at number 4 of the top cliques list.
3. Ruff Riders: Ruff Ryders were composed of DMX, Eve, Drag-on, the LOX (Jadakiss, Styles P, and Sheek Louch), Cassidy, and producer Swiss Beatz. Collectively, the group has put out a number of albums. However, DMX alone had beastly albums that include “It’s Dark and Hell Is Hot” and “Flesh of My Flesh, Blood of My Blood” and movies that include “Romeo Must Die” and “Exit Wounds.” Ruff Ryder clothing line was released with chains and jewelry to match. DMX had the game on lock longer than any of the above mentioned with a similarly prolific team to match.
2. Young Money: Young Money Entertainment is founded by rapper Lil Wayne. The label is an imprint of Cash Money Records and includes key artists Lil Wayne, Drake, Nicki Minaj, Tyga, Jae Millz, and Cory Gunz,. The label has released six US No. 1 albums: Tha Carter III, Tha Carter IV, and I Am Not a Human Being by Lil Wayne, Thank Me Later and Take Care by Drake, Pink Friday by Nicki Minaj, and one UK No. 1 album: Pink Friday: Roman Reloaded also by Nicki Minaj. This group is placed at number 2 because it has changed the game forever. Anyone that wants to put out a record has to replicate Drake or fail. It is impossible to ignore the greatness that they have established.
1. G-Unit: G-Unit is a hip hop group that originated from New York City formed by East Coast rappers 50 Cent, Lloyd Banks, Young Buck, and Tony Yayo. It’s not enough that rapper 50 cent has multiple multiplatinum albums under his belt. He has been in movies, has his own clothing line, an endorsement deal with a corporate sponsor, and for the first time, a video game in his likeness (50 Cent: Bulletproof). In 2011, Jackson was ranked the fifth richest figure in American hip hop with a net worth estimated at $100 million. Let’s be real: anyone that can move 2.3 million units of Young Bucks “Straight Outta Cashville” definitely deserves a number one spot.
Honorable mention: Wu Tang, Native Tongues, Bone Thugs and Harmony