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Mase and Guru Trade Rhymes in Unreleased 1998 Freestyle

Back when Mase had the most pristine bars in the game.

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Category: News Tags: ,
Premo
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DJ Premier Launches Exclusive Gang Starr Clothing Line & New Gang Starr Mixtape

The legendary DJ Premier will be venturing into the world of apparel by launching Gang Starr clothing line. 

Preemo along with the late great Guru, formed the iconic collective known as Gang Starr, a group that brought us classic hip-hop cuts such as "Mass Appeal," "DWYCK,"Check The Technique" and other timeless records that will live on forever...

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rapper producer duos
Last week, XXL brought you the 10 greatest rapping duos of all time, our unranked list of the ten one-two punches that we've seen work off each other lyrically and effortlessly. The Clipse, Mobb Deep, Jay and 'Ye—they're all in there, trading bars and swapping metaphors at the genre's highest level. We made the distinction of keeping that list strictly to rappers so we could follow it up today with the best rapper/producer combinations the game has ever seen. From Eric B. and Rakim to Prodigy and Alchemist, these one-two punches offer a different variety, one in which a single rapper has developed such a chemistry with a producer that they became, in a way, synonymous with each other.

For the most part, this means that the duo has worked together for more than one album; we've made exceptions to include dynamic twosomes such as Marley Marl and Big Daddy Kane, who laid the groundwork for Kane's fantastic solo career, as well as KRS-One and Scott LaRock, who were the minds behind Boogie Down Productions before LaRock's untimely death robbed them of further collaboration. But when it comes to this list, we made one major distinction: the two must have, at one point in their careers, been synonymous with each other. 9th Wonder may be more well-known from his work with Jay Z and Little Brother, but his five albums with Murs can't be ignored, either. Timbaland and Missy Elliott may have gone their separate ways, but without Timbo's beats we would never have had Missy's flair; Snoop and Dr. Dre, for all their collaborations on The Chronic and Doggystyle, always identified as individuals first, rather than partners.

With that in mind, here are XXL's 15 greatest rapper/producer duos in hip-hop history, left unranked for our readers to decide the order. Once again, let the debates begin. —XXL Staff with Layne Weiss
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15 Of The Greatest Rapper-Producer Duos Of All Time

Guru
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Today in Hip-Hop: R.I.P. Guru (July 17, 1962 – April 19, 2010)

Today, April 19, we celebrate the life of a pioneering, Golden Age MC, Guru.

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Category: News, Today in Hip-Hop Tags:
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Gang Starr’s ‘Hard To Earn’ And The Changing Face Of Brooklyn

Ed Note: The following is an essay remembering Gang Starr's classic album Hard To Earn, which celebrates its 20th anniversary tomorrow, March 8...

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Gang Staff
Gang Staff
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DJ Premier Launches Gang Starr Pop Up Shop

DJ Premier unveiled a new pop up shop for Gang Starr merch this week, selling hoodies and t-shirts for the holiday season. According to Preemo's Facebook page, the items will be available through January 1, so there's only a limited amount of time to grab the gear...

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Marco Polo, Talib Kweli And DJ Premier Pay Tribute To Guru In New Video

In paying tribute to the late Guru, Marco Polo, Talib Kweli and DJ Premier put out a special video titled “G.U.R.U.” The song honors the three-year anniversary of Guru’s passing with heartfelt rhymes from Talib...

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Bigger Than Hip-Hop: 22 Unexpected Celebrity Hip-Hop Heads

At one point in time, hip-hop music wasn't the major musical force that it is today; it was a fad relegated to the South Bronx, where DJs cut between drum breaks for a young crop of dancers to spin on their head to in the park...

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From the Archives: Harry Elam Jr. (Guru’s Older Brother) Speaks on His Brother’s Musical Legacy

It's been two years since the untimely passing of Gang Starr's vocal half, XXL reached out to Harry Elam Jr.—Guru's older brother—and revisited the MC's musical past...

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Today In Hip-Hop: Guru of Gang Starr Passes Away

On this day, April 19, in hip-hop history…

2010: It’s been three years since the passing of Keith Elam, better known as guru of Gang Starr...

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