1993 Rap Albums

30 Y/O: Iconic Rap/Hip-Hop Music Albums Celebrating 30th Anniversaries In 2023

By Waddie G. August 31, 2023

1993 marked a significant year for hip-hop music. It was the year when many iconic and seminal albums were released, setting a new benchmark for the genre’s musical style, substance, and cultural relevance.

It was a pivotal year with a diverse range of highly acclaimed debut hip-hop albums. Snoop Dogg’s Doggystyle cemented California’s impact on rap music and broke sales records for the genre. Guru’s Jazzmatazz Vol. 1 embodied street poetry with the sophistication of jazz, a style known in modern times as jazz hop, lo-fi hip-hop, jazz rap, and downtempo. Wu-Tang Clan’s 36 Chambers unleashed instant-classic east coast jams and long-lasting careers from nearly every member of its nine-men collective.

Women in hip-hop enjoyed their most impactful year-to-date as Queen Latifah’s respect-commanding anthem “U. N.I.T.Y.” still serves as a theme for many causes and personal declarations, and MC Lyte’s “Ruffneck” was a prideful anthem for young inner-city women who unabashedly like a rough and tough man who will treat his woman with love and respect. Salt-N-Pepa’s Very Necessary album increased the trio’s star power to international superstardom and 90s sex symbols over their hit records and music videos that celebrated the men they admire and ownership of their sexuality and femininity.

Three decades later, these albums have stood the test of time, and their influences can still be felt in the current state of rap music and hip-hop culture.

In this article, we celebrate the 30th anniversary of several game-changing rap albums released in 1993 and reflect on their hit singles, fan-favorite tunes, and acclaimed deep cuts that made their lasting impact on the genre.

Take a trip down memory lane with these iconic rap albums turning 30 in 2023. With chart-topping hits and legendary artists, these albums are a reminder of the genre’s transformational impact on the music industry and its continuing relevance today.

Very Necessary

album: Very Necessary
artist: Salt-N-Pepa
release date (USA): October 12, 1993
notable songs: “Shoop” “Whatta Man” “None of Your Business” “Heaven or Hell” “Step”

Doggy Style

album: Doggystyle
artist: Snoop Doggy Dogg
release date (USA): November 23, 1993
notable songs: “Who Am I? (What’s My Name?)” “Gin and Juice” “Aint No Fun (If the Homies Can’t Have None)” “Doggy Dogg World” “Lodi Dodi” “Murder Was the Case”

Midnight Marauders

album: Midnight Marauders
artist: A Tribe Called Quest
release date (USA): November 9, 1993
notable songs: “Electric Relaxation” “Award Tour” “Oh My God”

Enter The Wu-Tang (36 Chambers)

album: Enter The Wu-Tang (36 Chambers)
artist: Wu-Tang Clan
release date (USA): November 9, 1993
notable songs: “C.R.E.A.M.” “Protect Ya Neck” “Can It Be All So Simple” “Method Man” “Tearz”

19 Naughty III

album: 19 Naughty III
artist: Naughty By Nature
release date (USA): February 23, 1993
notable songs: “Hip Hop Hooray” “It’s On” “Written on Ya Kitten”

Black Reign

album: Black Reign
artist: Queen Latifah
release date (USA): November 16, 1993
notable songs: “U.N.I.T.Y.” “Just Another Day…” “Black Hand Side” “Weekend Love”

Strictly 4 My N.I.G.G.A.Z.

album: Strictly 4 My N.I.G.G.A.Z.
artist: 2Pac
release date (USA): February 16, 1993
notable songs: “I Get Around” “Keep Ya Head Up” “Holler If Ya Hear Me” “Papa’z Song”

Lethal Injection

album: Lethal Injection
artist: Ice Cube
release date (USA): December 7, 1993
notable songs: “Bop Gun (One Nation)” “You Know How We Do It” “Really Doe” “What Can I Do?”


album: Bacdafucup
artist: Onyx
release date (USA): March 30, 1993
notable songs: “Slam” “Throw Ya Gunz” “Shifftee”

Code Red

album: Code Red
artist: DJ Jazzy Jeff & The Fresh Prince
release date (USA): October 12, 1993
notable songs: “Boom! Shake the Room” “I Wanna Rock” “Can’t Wait to Be with You” “I’m Looking for the One (To Be with Me)” “Twinkle Twinkle (I’m Not a Star)”

14 Shots To The Dome

album: 14 Shots To The Dome
artist: LL Cool J
release date (USA): March 30, 1993
notable songs: “Stand by Your Man” “Back Seat (of My Jeep)” “How I’m Comin'” “Pink Cookies In a Plastic Bag Getting Crushed by Buildings” “Ain’t No Stoppin’ This”

Guru's Jazzmatazz, Vol. 1

album: Guru’s Jazzmatazz, Vol. 1
artist: Guru
release date (USA): May 18, 1993
notable songs: “Trust Me” “No Time To Play” “Loungin'” “Take a Look (At Yourself)”

Black Sunday

album: Black Sunday
artist: Cypress Hill
release date (USA): July 20, 1993
notable songs: “Insane in the Brain” “Lick a Shot” “I Ain’t Goin’ Out Like That” “When the Shit Goes Down” “I Wanna Get High”

Get In Where You Fit In

album: Get In Where You Fit In
artist: Too $hort
release date (USA): October 26, 1993
notable songs: “I’m a Player” “Money in the Ghetto” “Oakland Style” “Just Another Day”

The World Is Yours

album: The World Is Yours
artist: Scarface
release date (USA): August 17, 1993
notable songs: “Let Me Roll” “Lettin’ ‘Em Know” “You Don’t Hear Me Doe”

Shaq Diesel

album: Shaq Diesel
artist: Shaquille O’Neal
release date (USA): October 26, 1993
notable songs: “(I Know I Got) Skillz” “I’m Outstanding” “Shoot Pass Slam” “What’s Up Doc? (Can We Rock)” 

Shock Of The Hour

album: Shock Of The Hour
artist: MC Ren
release date (USA): November 16, 1993
notable songs: “Same Ol’ Shit” “Fuck What Ya Heard” “Mayday On The Frontline”

Ain't No Other

album: Ain’t No Other
artist: MC Lyte
release date (USA): June 22, 1993
notable songs: “Ruffneck” “I Go On” “I Cram to Understand U”

Down With The King

album: Down With The King
artist: Run-D.M.C.
release date (USA): May 4, 1993
notable songs: “Down With The King” “Ooh, Whatcha Gonna Do” “In The House”

Here Come The Lords

album: Here Come The Lords
artist: Lords Of The Underground
release date (USA): March 30, 1993
notable songs: “Funky Child” “Psycho” “Chief Rocka” “Here Come The Lords” “Flow On (New Symphony)”

Reachin' (A New Refutation Of Time And Space)

album: Reachin’ (A New Refutation Of Time And Space)
artist: Digable Planets
release date (USA): February 9, 1993
notable songs: “Rebirth of Slick (Cool Like Dat)” “Where I’m From” “Nickel Bags”

Till Death Do Us Part

album: Till Death Do Us Part
artist: Geto Boys
release date (USA): March 9, 1993
notable songs: “Six Feet Deep” “Crooked Officer” “Straight Gangstaism” “Murder After Midnight”

Return Of The Boom Bap

album: Return Of The Boom Bap
artist: KRS-One
release date (USA): September 28, 1993
notable songs: “Sound of da Police” “Outta Here” “Black Cop” “Stop Frontin'”

Blue Funk

album: Blue Funk
artist: Heavy D & The Boyz
release date (USA): January 12, 1993
notable songs: “Truthful” “Who’s the Man” “Love Sexy” “Here Comes the Heavster”

Which of these albums did you play in heavy rotation during their popularity? Which of these albums do you have in your current music streaming rotation? Let me know in the comments section.

Written By

Waddie G. is the Founding Editor of The G-Listed. Based in New York City, Waddie G.’s writing shows off his biggest passions for pop and gay cultures. Born in Sacramento, raised in Kansas City, developed in Atlanta, and matured in Chicago, Waddie G. is an unabashed foodie, proud R&B junkie, adventurous traveler, serial scribbler, and textbook Virgo. Waddie G. and his content has been featured on the "Wendy Williams Show," TMZ, Grindr, Vice, I-D, Windy City Times, and The Gothamist.