East Coast or West Coast Hip Hop? (or Dirty South)

This question probably applies mostly to the 90's era Hip Hop. What do you like better? If you don't know the difference in styles or where which MC is from, here's a list -


The Notorious BIG


Wu Tang Clan

Mobb Deep


Jay Z

Immortal Technique (2000's)

A Tribe Called Quest

Public Enemy




Dr. Dre

Snoop Dogg

Ice Cube


Cypress Hill

Bone Thugs and Harmony (Really from Ohio, but were on Ruthless records and had that west coast G-funk sound)

Above The Law

Celly Cel

Brotha Lynch Hung

Warren G

Lil 1/2 Dead



Geto Boys

(dont know many from the south, recommendations appreciated)
I didn't put Bone Thugs "and" Harmony, I used the N like they spell it, but GAG changed it


Most Helpful Guy

  • east coast definitely, especially the golden age of hip hop (1986-1996).

    run-dmc, ll cool j and schooly d were the first wave of rappers who turned hip hop from the party style of the era (1983-85) to a more modern style. in 1986 rakim and krs-one completely buried the old style for good with their first singles, after that came a huge influx of talented rappers/groups. from 1987 to 1995 the greatest hip hop albums dropped, most of them coming from the east coast. the rappers/groups during this era (big daddy kane, kool g rap, public enemy, lord finesse, big l, notorious b.i.g., a tribe called quest, gangstarr, nas, mobb deep, wu tang clan) influenced pretty much everybody and paved the way for the newer rappers (most of whom haven't distinguished themselves at all).

    out west ice-t set the stage with his 6n tha morning single in 1986, from that sprang a whole industry (gangsta rap) culminating with n.w.a. and then snoop dogg/2pac. ironically most of the earlier west coast records sounded pretty east coastish (except n.w.a. to a degree and too short). the west coast to me was much better before dr. dre released 'the chronic', g-funk ruined the west coast sound imo. fortunately there's always been a healthy underground scene out west that remembers it's roots (planet asia, hieroglyphics) and releases good records to this day.

    all I know about the south is the geto boys (awesome with the willie d/bushwick bill/scarface lineup) and 2 live crew. most of what I hear out of the south is unappealing to me.

    • I like the westside gfunk beats better than east coast, I LOVE those whiney lead synth lines on songs like "Ghetto Bird" from Ice Cube "Always Into Somethin" by NWA "My Opinion" by Mac Mall and "Black Superman" by Above The Law", but east coast had better lyrics, I mean west coast didn't release anything that could touch Illmatic imo, my fav west record was "Season of the Siccness" by Brotha Lynch and "Black Sunday" by Cypress Hill.

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    • different from there debut, the masses just went for there record at the time. I prefer their third record the best tho. army of the pharoahs is hella cool too, they're east coast. you might like apathy and celph titled if you haven't heard them already, apathy is nice with the mic.

    • Ive heard Celph Titled on Pull the Pins Out with Esoteric for AOTP before, sick song, I've heard Apathy collab with the Snowgoons as well, il give those west coast guys a look too, thanks for the recomendations

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Have an opinion?

What Girls Said 6

  • The South

    Goodie Mob



    Three 6 Mafia

    Lil Boosie

    Lil Keke

    DJ Taz

    Raheem The Dream

    Kilo Ali

    Trick Daddy

    Pastor Troy

    Cash Money (Lil Wayne, Juvenile, BG, Turk, UNLV)

    No Limit (Master P, Mystikal, 504 Boyz, Silk Da Shocker)

    T.I. (when he first came out)

    David Banner/Crooked Lettaz

  • ooooooooooo, don't know. East coast rap influences West coast by far tho.

    Krs- One (one can argue) introduces the whole "battle-esque" flow to rap in '84. That whole style influences new "harder" emcees to come out, later branching off into gangster rap, which is HUGE when talking about West coast rap. Then you get cats like Gang Starr and Tribe around the same time ('88) brings out a jazzier feel to rap causing the whole laid back chill feel one gets from G-Funk and that same essence is obviously prominent in other emcees works like People under the stairs and Dilated peoples. BUT, I think west coast rap has more variety than East coast. When you listen to East coast rap you know where it's coming from, but West coast sh*t isn't like that... Which I dig :). Not a fan of Southern rap, but if I had to choose... I'd choose neither :P

    • I don't really listen to anything before 91', but I kinda think the opposite as far as variety goes. I feel like whenever I hear those funky bass'd out synth ridden beats, I can tell its from the west. After "The Chronic" and "Doggystyle" dropped, everyone went to that style, except Cypress Hill, it kinda got a little stagnant, but that's OK because I love those 2 albums. I hate everything they did after those records though.

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    • I can't thank you guys enough.

    • Ha, for sure, for sure :)

  • I couldn't decide. Without going into semantics, I like several from each group, haha.

  • West Coast <3

  • west coast baby!

    tupac <3

  • east coast clearly


What Guys Said 5

  • I've always been a bigger fan of west coast rap. dre/2pac/eminem? etc.

    now days though, there isn't really as much of a divide in my opinion. rap is much different too, it's so commercialised now. Jayz is a perfect example of this.

    in terms of raw talent it's hard to decide, I actually think that in terms of rapping, biggie was probably the best there was. his rapping was really good, his lyrics flowed really well. 2pac in my opinion was the best musician there's been. his lyrics and beats really mixed well, I think a lot of how dre does his music was influenced by him.

  • both side great but I think West Coast hip hop is better,West Coast for life

  • I prefer West Coast in general but enjoy some East coast stuff too.

  • West Side! All the way jiga lol

  • The South.


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