-->''"Mama I aint going to school today wearing these same old clothes, Do you remember the look in her eye when she made you a meal and you didn't eat it, and all them tears she shed beside your bed over things that you needed, I still remember the way that I felt when I picked up a gun, I still remember the tears that I shed when my cousin was blasted with one, Do you remember the way that you felt when you walked out of prison, Or do you remember the pain that you felt from them sending you back for no reason"''
-->--'''Bootleg''' from ''The Music/DaytonFamily''

Ah, Gangsta Rap: probably one of the most controversial genres of music to ever hit the mainstream. A lot of MoralGuardians accused the genre (and Hip-Hop in general) of homophobia, and misogyny, while others saw the sub genre as a form of [[CatharsisFactor catharsis]], and just pure entertainment.

The term Gangsta Rap actually came from the media not the artists themselves, though some have called the genre "Reality Rap", or ''prime time news'' in the form of rap music. The genre even has shades of ConsciousHipHop, and PoliticalRap (at least in the beginning when the first wave of the genre was quasi-sociopolitical, this is rarely if ever brought up by the genre's detractors). There's also a lot of issues with mislabeling. Quite a few rappers who didn't fall into the Alt rap, or indie scene were automatically placed under the umbrella term Gangsta rap. Usually cynically and unfairly. There's also debate going on about whether the genre is still alive and well in the mainstream, or is it [[DeadHorseGenre deader than a horse]]. Some proponents feels that it died a long time ago, while opponents (usually alt/indie rap fans) think a watered down version is still very much active, and continuing the UncleTomFoolery, and the dumbing down of the genre.

Gangsta rap tend to appear in four flavors:

* Type 1: The more down to earth, blue collar type. Usually raps about RealLife struggles, problems and horrors of their [[WretchedHive gang, poverty, and crime ridden]] [[ViceCity inner city neighborhood]] in a realistic way.. Topics generally fall in the JustifiedCriminal territory. Could also have urban morality tales, with socio-economic and political undertones. Sometimes told from an [[MysteriousWatcher observer point of view]]. Is also usually anti-establishment, and anti-authoritarian.

* Type 2: The more commercial type, basically a polished pseudo hardcore, [[LighterAndSofter toned down]] version of Type 1 & 3. keep in mind they still wanna sell records. Usually Overlaps with GlamRap, and some music critics call this form ''Post Gangsta''.

* Type 3: [[DarkerAndEdgier The darker]] over the top unapologetic no holds barred hardcore, drug pushing, psycho gangsta rap, sometimes bordering on {{Horrorcore}}. A {{Flanderization}} of type one in many cases. When MoralGuardians are talking about the immorality of the Gangsta Rap genre, this is usually the type they have in mind.

* Type:4: Mafioso rap, gangsta rap which is more akin to romanticized mafioso films and organized crime, than typical gang violence.

See {{Trap Music}} where gangsta is stripped to the bare essentials of just a good beat and gangsta cliches.

See {{Horrorcore}}, which is when you take gangsta rap and add gory lyrics akin to DeathMetal.

An interesting point is that now that the genre's been around for twenty years, the rappers who were making hard-hitting (Type 1) albums have [[FormerTeenRebel softened as they got into their 30s and 40s]], and their projects have led to some serious RatedGForGangsta (kiddie movies, Ice Cube? ''Kiddie movies''?)


* [[Music/TupacShakur 2pac]]: Type 1, with shades of type 2 and 3.
* Music/{{NWA}}: Type 1 (when IceCube was with them) and 3.
* Music/AboveTheLaw: Type 1, with elements of PoliticalRap
* Music/AnybodyKilla: Types 1 and 3.
* Music/BlazeYaDeadHomie: Types 1 and 3.
* Music/BoneThugsNHarmony: Their lyrics was definitely Types 1 and 3. As of recent mostly Type 1. But as far as tone goes their music varied though.
* Music/BrothaLynchHung: Type 3.
* Music/ChiefKeef: Type 3.
* Music/CypressHill: Type 3
* Music/DaytonFamily: A bleak, depressing version of Types 1 and 3.
* Music/{{Dice}}: Types 1 and 3.
* Music/{{Eazy-E}}, Type 3.
* Music/{{Esham}}: Type 3.
* South Central Cartel
* No Limit Records- The record label had artists that ran the gamut of all 4 types. Mostly type one, and three though.
** Music/MasterP himself was Type 1, Type 4 and Type 3 until he [[SoMyKidsCanWatch had a kid]], then slid into Type 2, and eventually GlamRap (along with the company). Some blamed this on the success of the more polished Cashmoney Records and that No-Limit was trying to copy them.
* Papoose: Types 1 & 3
* Music/SnoopDogg: Types 1 and 2.
* Above The Law: Type 1.
* Music/JayZ: Type 4 in the beginning, but then delved into Type 2 with shades of Type 1. On his concept album, American Gangster, his style is Type 1 and eventually a [[WantingIsBetterThanHaving disillusioned]] version of Type 2
* [[Music/TheNotoriousBIG Notorious B.I.G]]: Types 2, 3, and 4
* Schooly D
* Kool G Rap and DJ Polo: Type 1.
** Kool G Rap on his own was pretty much the precursor for many of Type 4 gangsta rappers like AZ and Raekwon. Check his 1995 solo debut album "4, 5, 6", then the 1998 follow-up quasi-concept album "Roots Of Evil". Still an active artist, his rhymes now incorporate elements of Type 1, 3 and 4, with Type 1 being the most predominant.
* KRS-One: Types 1 and 3.
* Dead Prez: Type 1 mixed with political rap.
* IceCube: Type 1.
* [[Music/IceT Ice-T]]: Types 1 and 3.
* Three 6 Mafia: Firmly in Type 3.
* Compton's Most Wanted: Type 1.
* MC Ren: Type 1 and 3.
* Music/DrDre: Types 1 and 2.
* Music/GetoBoys Types 1 and 3.
** Scarface is purely Type 1 nowadays, although he ventured into Type 3 early on (especially with his debut, ''Mr. Scarface Is Back'').
* Music/{{Gravediggaz}}: Type 3.
* Music/{{Nas}} was Type 1, although his second album was more type 4.
* Clipse: Has elements of Type 1, Type 2, and Type 4.
* Music/MFGrimm: Type 1 most of the time with a little bit of type 3. Mostly found in his concept album about a gangster gingerbread man.
* Top Authority: Type 1.
* Mobb Deep: Primarily 3 and 4, with occasional touches of 2.
* Music/ProjectBorn: Types 1 & 3.
* Music/PsychopathicRydas: Type 1.
* Dizzee Rascal: A rudeboy take on Type 1. Some of his BoastfulRap tracks are Type 2.
* Music/WuTangClan: Type 1 mixed with a good portion of Type 3.
* Spice-1: Types 1 and 3.
* Woodie: Types 1 and 3.
* X-Raided: Type 3.
* Remy Ma: Type 3