What are the best hip hop albums of all time is a question often asked among the die hard fans of the genre. It’s a question that cannot be answered without roughing certain feathers. After all, hip hop is 40 plus years old and the number of albums that have come from the genre are countless.
The answer to this question can generate discussions for the next 40 years and still with no definitive answer. With that said, we’ll stay out of the argument and present you with Steve Harvey’s top 5 Hip Hop Albums that he’s purchased in his lifetime. A list that is unquestionable, except for, maybe, number 4. It’s a completely unexpected one, but it’s what you get when the discussion of best hip hop albums of all time arises.
Let’s start off the list in the order that Steve Harvey names them.
1) Tupac – All Eyez On Me (1996)
Tupac’s All Eyez On Me is an album that will make any hip hop fans top 5 to to 20, hands down. It’s a double disc album that spurred multiple radio hits, multiple music videos selling 566,000 copies in the first week of its release.All Eyez On Me is one of only a handful of hip hop albums to go diamond. That is, it sold 10 million records.
All Eyez On Me is an album that received immediate critical acclaim upon its release. The album was released on Death Row Records on February 13th 1996. It featured a number of star studded appearances including Dr. Dre, Snoop Dogg, Red Man, Method Man and many others.
As for production Tupac was a contributor and so was Dr. Dre, Daz, DJ Pooh, DJ Quick and Johnny “J”, among others.
2) Ice Cube – Death Certificate (1991)
Death Certificate was Ice Cube’s second solo studio album and it was released on October 29th, 1991. The album was released on Lench Mob Records and Priority Records. Death Certificate would go on to be a commercial success. It debuted at number 2 on the US Billboard 200 chart and sold 105,000 thousand copies in its first week. Within two months of the album’s release it was certified platinum in December by the Recording Industry Association Of America.
Death Certificate spun two singles. They were Steady Mobbin and True To The Game. As of March 2020, Death Certificate has sold more than two million records in the United States.
3) Jay Z – Blueprint (2002)
Blueprint is undoubtedly one of the great hip hop albums of all time. It is one of those albums that you can play from beginning to end without skipping a track. For many, along with Reasonable Doubt it is one of Jay Z’s best albums to date.
The album has a very soulful vibe with production primarily handled by then producer only, Kanye West, Just Blaze and Bink. Timbaland and Trackmasters added to the production as well. There was only one guest feature on the album and it was none other than Eminem.
The Blueprint was released on September 11th, 2021 debuting at number 1. It sold over 427,000 records in its opening week. It remained at number 1 for three weeks. The album would go on to be certified double platinum.
4) Petey Pablo – Diary Of A Sinner (2001)
At the beginning we stated that number four may come as a surprise to many. It is Petey Pablo’s Diary Of A Sinner: 1st Entry. The album was released in 2021 and it made its debut at number 25. The competition was fierce but its first week sales were 100,00 records sold in the United States. The album would go on to be certified Gold.
Petey’s Diary Of A Sinner was nominated for Best Rap Album at the 45th Grammy Awards. However, the top prize was taken by Eminem for his album The Eminem Show.
Perhaps the most remarkable outing from the album was the hit single “Raise Up.” It shouts out North Carolina and it had the whole country of America doing so as well. Raise up topped the Hot 100 singles chart at number 25.
Eventually a remix for Raise Up was released. It started off with North Carolina and it would go on to shout out other major cities across America that included NYC, LA, New Orleans and Las Vegas.
5) Outcast – Speaker Boxxx/The Love Below
Speaker Boxxx/The Love Below was the 5th studio album release by hip hop group Outkast. It’s a double album released on September 23, 2003. It is an over two hours double album with each album being a solo release from each artist. That is, Speaker Boxxx Outkast member Big Boy’s solo album and The Love Below is Andre 300’s solo album.
Speaker Boxxx/The Love Below singles included Hey Ya and The Way You Move. Both singles reached number 1 on the US Billboard Hot 100. The album itself would debut at number 1 with record sales of 510,000 copies in its first week. The album would eventually be certified diamond. It won Album Of The Year and Best Rap Album at the 46th Grammy Awards.
And as always we like to close with a saying, quote or adage and today’s is unknown (viral video of Steve Harvey’s top 5 classic albums he’s purchased below): I FIND IT REALLY ATTRACTIVE WHEN SOMEONE HAS A GOOD TASTE IN MUSIC.
Now, go forth and change the game!