- The Untold Story of Dr. Dre, Eazy-E, Ice Cube, Tupac Shakur, and the Birth of West Coast Rap
- Narrated by: JD Jackson
- Length: 15 hrs and 17 mins
- Unabridged Audiobook
- Release date: 15-09-16
- Language: English
- Publisher: Hachette Books
Amid rising gang violence, the crack epidemic, and police brutality, a group of unlikely voices cut through the chaos of late 1980s Los Angeles: N.W.A. Led by a drug dealer, a glammed-up producer, and a high school kid, N.W.A. gave voice to disenfranchised African Americans across the country. And they quickly redefined pop culture across the world.
Their names remain as popular as ever: Eazy-E, Dr. Dre, and Ice Cube. Dre soon joined forces with Suge Knight to create the combustible Death Row Records, which in turn transformed Snoop Dogg and Tupac Shakur into superstars.
Ben Westhoff explores how this group of artists shifted the balance of hip-hop from New York to Los Angeles. He shows how N.W.A.'s shocking success led to rivalries between members and record labels and eventually a war between East Coast and West Coast factions. In the process hip-hop burst into mainstream America at a time of immense social change and became the most dominant musical movement of the last 30 years. At gangsta rap's peak, two of its biggest names - Tupac and Biggie Smalls - were murdered, leaving the surviving artists to forge peace before the genre annihilated itself.
Featuring extensive investigative reporting, interviews with the principal players, and dozens of never-before-told stories, Original Gangstas is a groundbreaking addition to the history of popular music.
PLEASE NOTE: When you purchase this title, the accompanying reference material will be available in your Library section along with the audio.
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Customer ReviewsMost Helpful
By Ramona S. on 23-08-18
For hip-hop fans and American culture vultures
This book provides a superb overview of the topic for hip-hop fans and those interested in the impact of it upon wider American culture. Focusing on the origins of West Coast gangster rap, it progresses to show how social reality was projected by those immersed in it to a wider audience. It has a superb range of sources that JD Jackson manages to quite staggeringly interpret vocally with one of the best audio book performances I have heard. Highly recommended listen.
Customer ReviewsMost Helpful
By Maxine on 28-11-16
Excellent, rap needs more of these!
Would you listen to Original Gangstas again? Why?
Yes I would, there was so much information to absorb, but it was never overbearing. History and facts are abundant
Who was your favorite character and why?
Eazy-E was my first favorite rapper so I suppose you could say he was! Wish there was more on him but Ben did an excellent job of covering him.
Which character – as performed by JD Jackson – was your favorite?
JD did a great job with the reading and I feel like his portrayal of Ice T was the most convincing
Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?
Sure, but I'd probably take breaks to listen to the music the book talks about
Any additional comments?
The only criticism I could levy against this book is that it sometimes jumps ahead of itself, talking about things before they happen (in the context of the book) but otherwise this was a fantastic read and I am most impressed by the writers ability to tie in so many different characters so flawlessly! I've purchased 54 books on audible & this may be the best one yet!
3 of 3 people found this review helpful
By guyzilla on 19-02-17
Very Informative and well told
Originally I purchased this because I searched for keyword "Tupac" this was in the results and sounded like it was a good listen for my drive to work. it turned out to be a great story and very informative.
2 of 2 people found this review helpful