On this day, July 16, in hip-hop history...

Orpheus Records
Orpheus Records

1991: West Coast rap pioneers Compton's Most Wanted hit it out of the park when they dropped their sophomore album, Straight Check'n Em, on July 16, 1991.

Led by MC Eiht, the Compton crew were coming off a strong debut album (1990's It's A Compton Thang) when they offered up Straight Check'n Em and expectations were high. Fortunately, Eiht, Boom Bam and Ant Capone knew what they were up against and better yet, knew how to deliver.

The thirteen-track LP was crafted entirely by CMW producers DJ Slip and The Unknown DJ and MC Eiht wrote a large majority of the raps. It's said that it took the crew less than two months to put the entire project together. In now classic G-funk, Gangsta rap fashion, CMW sampled funk era titans like Sly & The Family Stone and George Clinton to get just the right amount of Cali bounce to accompany their rhymes. With singles like "Straight Check'n Em" and "Growin' Up in the Hood", which was featured John Singleton's legendary film, Boyz n the Hood, the commercial success was undeniable. The album peaked at number 23 on the Billboard Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums and number 92 on the Billboard 200, surpassing their previous chart positions.

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