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Eric B. & Rakim

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New York City, New York, United States (1987 – 1992)

Eric B. & Rakim were a hip-hop duo from New York City, New York, United States composed of DJ Eric Barrier (born November 8, 1965) and MC Rakim (born William Michael Griffin Jr.). The duo went on to release 4 studio albums with their 1987, Paid In Full being regarded as one the most influential albums in Hip Hop. In 1988, they released their second album titled, Follow The Leader. They later continued to release two more albums in 1990, Let The Rhythm Hit ‘Em and in 1992, Don’t Sweat The Technique in which they went on to split in that same year.

Eric B. & Rakim were almost universally recognized as the best DJ & MC duo. Not only was their chemistry superb, but individually, each represented the absolute peak in their respective skills. Eric B. was a hugely influential DJ and beatmaker whose taste for hard-hitting James Brown samples touched off a stampede through the Godfather of Soul’s back catalog that continues up to the present day. Rakim, meanwhile, still tops fan polls as the greatest MC of all time. He crafted his rhymes like poetry, filling his lines with elaborate metaphors and complex internal rhymes, and he played with the beat like a jazzman, earning a reputation as the smoothest-flowing MC ever to pick up a mic. His articulation was clear, his delivery seemingly effortless, and his influence on subsequent MCs incalculable. Together, their peerless technique on the microphone and turntables upped the ante for all who followed them, and their advancement of hip-hop as an art form has been acknowledged by everyone from Gang Starr to the Wu-Tang Clan.

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