Today marks a significant but very sad anniversary in the world of hip-hop: 26 years ago, on March 26, 1995, Eazy-E died at 31.
As the cornerstone of N.W.A. and a solo artist, Eazy-E is the Godfather of Gangsta Rap. From Snoop Dogg to Freddie Gibbs, it's hard to imagine hardcore rap without his influence. And it's impossible to imagine where hip-hop would have gone without the impact of the immortal 1988 album 'Straight Outta Compton' When N.W.A.’s debut album, 'Straight Outta Compton', came out in 1988, it struck a nerve within the rap community and with young people of all stripes.
Though many parents worried that the music glorified violence, drugs and misogyny, the album was a major success, kickstarting the careers of Dr. Dre, Ice Cube, and Eazy-E.
Eazy-E wasn't just a member of N.W.A.; it was his label, Ruthless Records, that launched the group and would later discover acts such as Bone Thugs-n-Harmony.
For his style and business sense, Eazy-E is known as the Godfather of Gangsta Rap.