For every 1 superstar in “gangsta rap”, there are a hundred underground gangsta rappers, who also are held in high prestige throughout the genre like Mitchy Slick, Don Diego, Gangsta Dre, Mr. Capone-E, and Big Wy to name a few. Some might even say they are the backbone of the culture and the precursors of today’s independent driven market. These artists have reached their own type of Fame and Celebrity. Like their L.A. and Bay Area counterparts, Sacramento had an abundance of stars in their own right.
Brotha Lynch Hung is widely considered to be one of the catalysts for Sacramento’s burgeoning rap scene, starting rap at an early age performing in a group with his brother Sicx, and later producing all but one of the tracks on X Raided’s classic debut album “Psycho Active”. Brotha Lynch is a bonafide legend in the genre even spawning his own known as “ripgut”, with multiple classic albums. “ 24 deep, Ebk4, Dinner and A Movie, Season of da Sicness, and Block Movement” with fellow Garden Block alumni and Sactown vet CBO. When 2 Pac and Biggie we’re engulfed in their beef, C Bo was forming West Coast Mafia, selling records, and breaking onto the national scene with a controversial song that landed him behind bars.
X Raided’s style was a polar opposite of Brotha Lynch. He had classic titles of his own, the most celebrated and critically acclaimed being his debut album “Psycho Active“. X raided at the time was fighting a homicide charge stemming from a home invasion incident when he was 17. Later convicted and sentenced to 31 years in prison. The cover and album were draped in controversy with the cover allegedly depicting x raided holding a gun to his head that closely resembled the weapon used during a murder involving the victim a mother.
Luni Coleone, X Raided’s younger cousin was also extremely active in the Sacramento rap scene during the mid-90s to the mid 00’s. Releasing an abundance of projects including his classic “Total Recall” and “In the Mouth of Madness”. Considered to be one of if not the best artist to come out of Garden Block and Sacramento.
Age of Mozzy
Growing up in the Oak Park section of Sacramento, Mozzy formerly known as Lil Tom has released more than 30 projects, both joint, collaborative, and solo since 2012. His 2015 album “Bladadah” received critical acclaim from Billboard Magazine and praised by Complex for having the best run in rap during 2015. Mozzy in part along with his Hell Gang associates which include his brother E Mozzy, Celly Ru and others have reshaped the climate of West Coast music and ushered in an era of music in Sacramento practically mirroring Cheif Keef and his Drill Movement.
Mozzy gained national attention after a song released by he and Oakland rap vet Philthy Rich “I’m Just Being Honest” was linked to numerous shootings and deaths. Reportedly because of the raw content depicted in the track. In 2017 he released his latest and possibly greatest album to date “1 Up Top Ahk”. A soulful ballad “Sleepwalking” proved to be the smash hit, detailing the inner struggles of the Sacramento rapper that include time spent in San Quinton State Prison, to dealings with CPS (Child Protective Services). Possibly garnering the biggest look of his career in early 2018 when Mozzy’s “Sleepwalking” was featured on the score for Marvel Comics blockbuster Black Panther. Mozzy may have single-handedly revived “gangsta rap“.
Check out parts 1-3 below