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list Jan 5 2016 Written by

Top 10 Hip Hop Hometown Anthems

Hip Hop has always seen its artists representing and showing love for their hometown through their music. For this list, we have selected 10 dope hometown anthems. Enjoy!

10. Too Short - Oakland (1988)

West Coast legend Too Short shows love for his hometown with this laidback track from his second studio album Life Is… Too Short.

9. Gang Starr - The Place That We Dwell (1992)

“Never taking shorts cause Brooklyn’s the borough…” Guru (originally from Boston) and DJ Premier (hailing from Texas) – pay homage to their new hometown with this dope opening track from Gang Starr‘s third album Daily Operation.

8. DJ Quik - Born And Raised In Compton (1991)

DJ Quik‘s first single from his debut studio album Quik Is the Name has him celebrate his roots in Compton, Los Angeles. Classic.

7. MC Shan - The Bridge (1987)

This infamous track celebrates Queensbridge, NYC – home of MC Shan and Marley Marl. Marley Marl’s hard-ass beat is classic and Shan’s lyrics sparked the Bridge Wars.

KRS One and Boogie Down Productions felt MC Shan claimed Hip Hop originated in Queensbridge, and they were not having it. KRS One’s answer can be found later on in this list…

6. LL Cool J - Farmers Blvd (1990)

Farmers Boulevard in St. Alban, Queens is where LL Cool J is from. It is mentioned often in his lyrics, this posse cut from the classic Mama Said Knock You Out album is a straight-up tribute to the place.

5. Beastie Boys - An Open Letter To NYC (2004)

The third single from Beastie Boys‘ sixth studio album To the 5 Boroughs.

“Brooklyn, Bronx, Queens, and Staten
From the Battery to the top of Manhattan
Asian, Middle-Eastern, and Latin
Black, White, New York you make it happen”

4. 2Pac - To Live And Die In L.A. (1996)

2Pac’s classic ode to Los Angeles. Taken from The Don Killuminati: The 7 Day Theory Makaveli album.

3. Mos Def - Brooklyn (1999)

Mos Def’s own tribute to his native NYC borough, from the classic Black On Both Sides album.

2. Crooklyn Dodgers - Crooklyn (1994)

Masta Ace, Special Ed and Buckshot lay it down for Brooklyn, a.k.a. Crooklyn. The hook is sampled from another Brooklyn tribute track: Gang Starr’s The Place Were We Dwell. “Never taking shorts cause Brooklyn’s the borough…”

1. Boogie Down Productions - South Bronx (1987)

The ultimate hometown anthem. This response to MC Shan’s The Bridge is dope as hell and left no doubt as to who would ultimately be victorious in the Bridge Wars. An all-time Hip Hop classic.

Honorable Mentions

  • MC Lyte – Kickin’ 4 Brooklyn (1988)
  • Willie D – 5th Ward (1989)
  • De La Soul – Long Island Degrees (1996)
  • OutKast – West Savannah (1998)
  • Lauryn Hill – Every Ghetto, Every City (1998)
  • Eve ft Beanie Sigel – Philly Philly (1999)
  • Queen Latifah – Jersey (1995)
  • Sir Mix A Lot – Seattle Ain’t Bullshittin (1992)
  • Scarface – My Block (2002)
  • Redman – Brick City Mashin’ (2000)
  • Jermaine Dupri ft Ludacris – Welcome To Atlanta (2001)
  • Will Smith – Miami (1998)
  • Cam’Ron – Harlem Streets (2004)
  • Cam’Ron ft Jay Z – Welcome To NYC (2002)
  • Bone-Thugs-N-Harmony – Cleveland Is The City (2002)
  • Edo G. feat. Pete Rock – Boston (2004)
  • Royce Da 5’9′ & Eminem – Rock City (2002)
  • Atmosphere – Say Shh (2008)
  • Diamond District – The District (2009)
  • Jay Z – Empire State Of Mind (2009)
  • Tech N9ne – O.G. (2010)
  • Wale – DC Or Nothing (2011)
  • Trick Trick ft Eminem – Welcome To Detroit (2005)
  • J Cole – Song For The Ville (2010)

Written by

HHGA founder. Hip Hop historian. Avid reader. Proud dad. Marketing guy. Top 5 Golden Age MCs: Rakim, Big Daddy Kane, KRS One, Chuck D, Nas…

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