[[caption-width-right:350: The World's Most Dangerous Group[[note]]Left to right: Music/IceCube, Music/DrDre, Music/EazyE, DJ Yella and MC Ren.[[/note]]]]

->''You are now about to witness the strength of street knowledge.''

N.W.A (a.k.a. "Niggaz Wit Attitudes") was a Compton, California-based hip hop group widely considered one of the seminal acts of the gangsta rap sub-genre. Active from 1986 to 1991, the group endured controversy due to the explicit nature of their lyrics. They were subsequently banned from many mainstream U.S. radio stations and even at times prevented from touring -- yet the group has still sold over 9 million units in the U.S. alone, mostly through word of mouth and underground magazines and hip-hop scenes. Their first album, ''Music/StraightOuttaCompton'', marked the beginning of the new GangstaRap era as the production and the social commentary in their lyrics were revolutionary within the genre. ''Rolling Stone'' ranked N.W.A 83rd on their list of the "100 Greatest Artists of All Time". Although largely unknown at the group's inception, rappers Music/DrDre, Music/IceCube, Music/EazyE and MC Ren would all go on to be platinum-selling stars as solo artists.

Compton-based former drug dealer Eazy-E began Ruthless Records with Jerry Heller. Ruthless released ''N.W.A. and the Posse'' in 1987 with Macola Records. N.W.A. was still in its developing stages, and only credited on four of the eleven tracks, notably the uncharacteristic electro hop record "Panic Zone", "[=8Ball=]", and "Dopeman", which first brought together (on wax) Ice Cube, Dr. Dre and Eazy-E. Also included was Eazy-E's solo record "Boyz-n-the Hood". In 1988, rapper MC Ren joined the group.

N.W.A released ''Music/StraightOuttaCompton'' in 1988. With its famous opening salvo of three songs, the group reflected the rising anger of the urban youth. "Straight Outta Compton" introduced the group; "Fuck tha Police" protested police brutality and racial profiling, and "Gangsta Gangsta" painted the worldview of the inner-city youth. While the group was later credited with pioneering the burgeoning sub genre of GangstaRap, N.W.A. in fact referred to their music as "reality rap".

Ice Cube and MC Ren's lyrics dealing with the violence and anger of the disenfranchised inner-city residents were complemented by a simple, ominous production based on heavy beats courtesy of Dr. Dre and scratched samples by co-producer DJ Yella. "Fuck tha Police", perhaps the group's most notorious song, brought them into conflict with various law enforcement agencies. Under pressure from [[MoralGuardians Focus on the Family]], Milt Ahlerich, an assistant director of the FBI, sent a letter to Ruthless and its parent company Priority Records advising the rappers that "advocating violence and assault is wrong and we in the law enforcement community take exception to such action". This letter can still be seen at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in Cleveland, Ohio. Policemen refused to provide security for the group's concerts, hurting their plans to tour. ''Straight Outta Compton'' was also one of the first albums to be given the new Parental Advisory label, then in its early stages: the now-iconic label then only consisted of "WARNING: Moderate impact coarse language and/or themes". However, the taboo nature of N.W.A's music was [[NoSuchThingAsBadPublicity the greatest part of its mass appeal]]. The media coverage compensated for N.W.A's virtual lack of airplay and their album eventually went double platinum.

N.W.A's next release was some five months later, the EP ''100 Miles and Runnin''', but would not be equally diplomatic. Music/IceCube left in late 1989 over royalty disputes; having written 45% of ''Straight Outta Compton'' himself, he felt he was not getting a fair share of the money and profits. He wasted little time putting together his solo debut, 1990's ''Ameri[=KKK=]a's Most Wanted'', but avoided mentioning his former label mates. The song "100 Miles and Runnin'" is also notable for being Dr. Dre's final uptempo record, which had been a common feature of late-80s hip hop. The group's second full-length release, 1991's ''[=Efil4zaggin=]'' ("[=Niggaz4Life=]" spelled backwards), re-established the group in the face of Ice Cube's continued solo success. The album is considered by many Dr. Dre's finest production work, and heralded the beginning of the "G-Funk era". It also showed a clear animosity towards their former member, and derogatory references to Ice Cube are found in several songs.

''[=Niggaz4Life=]'' would be the group's final album. After Dr. Dre, The D.O.C. and Michel'le's departure from Ruthless for Creator/DeathRowRecords, in which Eazy-E was allegedly coerced into signing away their contracts (while however retaining a portion of their publishing rights), a bitter rivalry ensued. Dr. Dre began the exchange with Death Row's first release, 1992's "Fuck Wit Dre Day (And Everybody's Celebratin')", and its accompanying video featured a character named Sleazy-E who ran around desperately trying to get money. The insults continued on ''The Chronic'' with "Bitches Ain't Shit". Eazy-E responded in 1993 with the EP ''It's On [[strike:Dr. Dre]] [=187um=] Killa'' and the tracks "Real Muthaphuckkin G's" and "It's On". Eazy-E accused Dr. Dre of homosexual tendencies, calling him a "she thang", and the music video for "Real Muthaphuckkin G's" shows promo pictures of him wearing make-up and a sequined jumpsuit. The photos were from Dr. Dre's World Class Wreckin' Cru days, when such fashions were the style of West Coast Electro hop prior to N.W.A's popularizing of gangsta rap.

After Eazy-E's AIDS-related death on March 26, 1995, all bad blood between the group ceased. Dr. Dre and Ice Cube would later express their re-evaluated feelings to their old friend on 1999's "What's The Difference" and "Chin Check", 2000's "Hello", and 2006's "Growin' Up".

With the success of the {{biopic}} ''[[Music/TheNotoriousBIG Notorious]]'', New Line Cinema reps announced to Entertainment Weekly's "Hollywood Insider Blog" that N.W.A's story is in development to become a theatrical release. [[Film/StraightOuttaCompton The film, titled after the group's first album]] and directed by F. Gary Gray, was released on August 14, 2015.

Perhaps due in part to the newfound hype surrounding the group, they were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2016, only the fifth hip-hop act to receive the honor (following Music/GrandmasterFlashAndTheFuriousFive in 2007, Music/RunDMC in 2009, Music/BeastieBoys in 2012, and Music/PublicEnemy in 2013).

Unrelated to the Sandford [[Film/HotFuzz Neighborhood Watch Alliance]], the Wrestling/NationalWrestlingAlliance, or Northwest Airlines.

!!N.W.A albums
* ''N.W.A. and the Posse'', released November 6, 1987
* ''Music/StraightOuttaCompton'', released August 8, 1988
* ''100 Miles and Runnin'', released August 14, 1990 (EP)
* ''[=Niggaz4life=]'', released May 28, 1991

!!N.W.A music videos

* [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-MrQtOoQRpc Straight Outta Compton]]
* [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RxAEXUyGM94&feature=related Alwayz Into Somethin']]


* {{Angry Black M|an}}en: As if their name or near-NoIndoorVoice-territory rapping didn't give it away.
* CardCarryingVillain: MC Ren often referred to himself as "the villain in black", and released a solo album with that as the title.
* ClusterFBomb: While no longer holding any records, it is amusing to note that "Fuck tha Police" is 12.1% profanity with a solid 42 seconds of the song being unplayable on the radio.
* CoversAlwaysLie: There are ''six'' guys on the cover of ''Music/StraightOuttaCompton.'' The extra man (between Cube and Yella) is Arabian Prince, a founding member of the group who left after the picture was shot but before the album was recorded.
* DarkerAndEdgier: ''[=Niggaz4life=]''
* DirtyCop: In "Fuck Tha Police"
* DrugsAreBad: On "Dopeman," Ice Cube has some harsh words for cocaine users.
--> If you smoke 'caine, you're a stupid motherfucker!
* EarlyInstallmentWeirdness: ''N.W.A. and the Posse'' is a compilation album of a few previously released songs, the original version of "Dopeman", and [[DolledUpInstallment several tracks from people with a strenuous connection to the N.W.A.]]. The cover is also quite bizarre, featuring interesting sights such as Ice Cube wearing a [[Music/PublicEnemy Flavor Flav]] style clock, Dr. Dre wearing a leather jacket long before it became his IconicOutfit, and [[CoversAlwaysLie lots of random friends who were willing to pose for a photo]].
* [[SeanConneryIsAboutToShootYou Eazy-E Is About to Shoot You]]: [[http://thebadpennyblog.files.wordpress.com/2010/01/n-w-a-straight-outta-compton-album-cover.jpg The famous cover image]] for ''Straight Outta Compton'', which also qualifies as a TrunkShot. The ''[=Niggaz4Life=]'' [[http://s3.amazonaws.com/hiphopdx-production/2015/07/Niggaz4life-Bonus-Tracks-cover.jpg cover]] was similar, in that it showed [[HarsherInHindsight Eazy-E's ghost]] about to grab you.
* FiveManBand:
** TheLeader: Eazy-E
** TheLancer: MC Ren
** TheSmartGuy: Dr. Dre
** TheBigGuy: Ice Cube
** TheHeart: DJ Yella
** SixthRanger: Arabian Prince on the album cover of Straight Outta Compton. It also applies to Krazy Dee. Both left the group before Straight Outta Compton released.
* GangstaRap: The [[TropeCodifier Trope Codifiers]] if not the TropeMakers.
* GoshDangItToHeck: "I Ain't Tha 1" is close to entirely devoid of profanity, yet it does contain sexually explicit themes. Consequently, this trope was in play in some of the lyrics.
* GunPorn: The music videos for "Alwayz into Somethin" and "Appetite for Destruction" from [=Niggaz4Life=] are quite subdued examples of this, as well as their some of their publicity photos.
** Eazy-E's "Neighborhod Sniper" video (post-NWA).
* HypocriticalHumor: This gem from "Express Yourself" from ''Music/StraightOuttaCompton'', due to [[HilariousInHindsight Dr Dre's The Chronic being a full celebration of marijuana use]]:
--> "I still express, yo I don't '''smoke weed or sess''', 'cause it's known to give a brother brain damage...."
* IntentionallyAwkwardTitle: "Fuck Tha Police".
* IntercourseWithYou: "Just Don't Bite It"
* JokerJury: "Fuck Tha Police" has a cop being tried by MC Ren, Dr. Dre, Ice Cube and Eazy-E and eventually convicted for being "a redneck, whitebread, chicken-shit motherfucker".
* MohsScaleOfLyricalHardness: 10, except for "Express Yourself" which is 2 only for the brief (and ''negative'') drug reference, and "Something 2 Dance 2", which is a ''1''.
* NWordPrivileges: ''[[SarcasmMode Really?]]''
** They actually explain these privileges in their song "Niggaz 4 Life"
* OlderThanTheyLook: Eazy-E was smaller than the rest of the group and was often seen wearing the same size jacket as them even though it was really big on him. Would you believe that he was the oldest returning member of the group? By a lot?
* ProtestSong: Take a wild guess...
* RatedMForManly
* RedShirt: The dude who speaks at the beginning of "Gangsta Gangsta".
* RefugeInAudacity
* {{Sampling}}: "Straight Outta Compton" was one of the first popular tracks to use the AmenBreak.
* SdrawkcabName: The title of ''[=Niggaz4life=]'' is mirrored on the cover, in a way some people call the album ''[=Efil4zaggin=]''.
* SixthRanger: Probably MC Ren, on account of being the last to join.
* SongParody: "I'd Rather Fuck You", of "I'd Rather Be With You" by Bootsy Collins.
** "Automobile" of "My Automobile" by Parliament.
** "[[Music/RunDMC My Adidas]]" becomes "My Penis"
** NWA themselves were parodied by [[Music/{{GWAR}} Dave Brockie]] in his band's song "The Salaminizer", which rewrites the lyrics to "Gangsta Gangsta" and uses them as the verses for a thrash-metal song.
* SpiritualSuccessor: Music/BoneThugsNHarmony.
* TheStoic: MC Ren.
* TheStoner: Dr. Dre
* SurprisinglyGentleSong: In a way of speaking... "Express Yourself" is one of the few NWA tracks to almost completely lack profanity. It was made because they needed ''something'' that radio stations could play.