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Walking in the footsteps of some of rap's most legendary is not for the faint of heart, as many rappers learned firsthand over the years. Coming from a neighborhood that's own history is intertwined with the fabric of hip hop is a gift and a curse. For Compton native YG, carrying on the tradition set by luminaries like Eazy E, Dr. Dre. DJ Quik, Game, and other greats came effortlessly.
In 2014, after years of building a buzz as one of the hottest prospects on the west coast, YG unleashed his debut album, which brought listeners into his world -- a world where gang-banging, burglaries and other criminal activity is par for the chorus. Boasting features from Drake, Kendrick Lamar, Jeezy, Tory Lanez, Rich Homie Quan, ScHoolboy Q, Jay Rock, TeeFlii and others; as well as production from DJ Mustard, Metro Boomin, Mike Free, C Ballin, Terrace Martin, Chordz and B Wheezy; My Krazy Life was one of the high-powered long players of that year.
Giving a new generation of fans a proper introduction to Compton, My Krazy Life has been hailed as a modern-day classic and one of the definitive west coast albums of its era.
With today marking five years since this album shook up the rap world, REVOLT revisited My Krazy Life and picked out seven of its hottest songs. Peep them below.
YG gives listeners an unfiltered view of Bompton on this introductory cut from the rapper's debut studio album. Repping for his gang-infested neighborhood's west end, the pride of 400 Spruce Street throws his set up lyrically on this DJ Mustard-produced rallying cry.
2. "I Just Wanna Party"
Sinister keys help set the stage for this cut that channels the energy of a neighborhood house party on wax. Featuring guest spots from TDE spitters ScHoolboy Q and Jay Rock, this collaboration finds its host spreading Cali love. Heeding advice from his elders, YG makes sure to come to the function strapped. But, he's in the mood to boogie like a gangsta's supposed to.
3. "Bicken Being Bool"
Slang derived from gang culture has been adopted in hip hop for decades. But, YG added to the lexicon with this selection that had rap fans worldwide replacing their "C's" with "B's." Produced by DJ Mustard, this track puts listeners in YG's shoes during an average day when he navigates through his hood.
4. "My Nigga"
After the success of his Ty Dolla $ign-assisted single "Toot It and Boot It," it would take YG three more years to eclipse the buzz surrounding that hit. He accomplished that with the release of this lead-single from My Krazy Life. Produced by Mike Free and DJ Mustard, YG -- who is joined by Rich Homie Quan and Jeezy -- established himself with this smash. It scored the rapper his first Top 20 hit and platinum plaque.
5. "Do It To Ya"
One song from YG's debut that provided a welcome change of pace was this syrupy ditty, which matches the rapper with singer TeeFlii. Drawing inspiration from Tha Dogg Pound's 1995 hit " Let's Play House," producers DJ Mustard and C Ballin craft an infectious backdrop for the pair to whisper sweet nothings over.
6. "Who Do You Love"
Anticipation for YG's debut album reached a crescendo when he unleashed this heater in early 2014, which captures him teaming up with rap star Drake for what would become one of the quintessential collaborations of that year. This jam found traction on the radio and it peaked at No. 54 on the Billboard Hot 100.
Hailing from one of rap's most historic locales, it was only appropriate that YG add to the city's list of rap anthems with this bonus cut from the deluxe version of his debut. "I'm on Rosecrans, nigga, at Tam's Burgers," the Def Jam spitter raps as he pays homage to the streets and landmarks that define Compton.
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