8. The Notorious B.I.G. - Ready to Die
Brooklyn born and bred, Christopher Wallace had the mix of talent, charisma and star power that destined him to become of the greatest emcees to ever project that unique mix through a microphone. A rough demo tape caught the attention of The Source in the early ’92, and Wallace was soon signed to a contract with Uptown Records, leading him to meet Sean “Diddy” Combs. Diddy was bounced from the label and started Bad Boy records, and Biggie quit Uptown and went along for the ride. What crystallized shortly thereafter was an album that completely changed rap and instantly established Biggie as one of the most spontaneous, smooth and creative rappers on the planet. Ready To Die isn’t just a classic album, it’s one you put in a time capsule and launch into space in case other planets want to know what hip-hop is.