Search - Coolio :: Gangsta's Paradise

Gangsta's Paradise
Gangsta's Paradise
Genres: Pop, Rap & Hip-Hop
  •  Track Listings (17) - Disc #1

Old-school hip-hop, which builds its sing-song raps atop samples of old funk and soul singles, may be on the way out, but in its twilight days it has yielded one more brilliant album, Coolio's Gangsta's Paradise. Coolio, t...  more »


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CD Details

All Artists: Coolio
Title: Gangsta's Paradise
Members Wishing: 0
Total Copies: 15
Label: Rhino / Ada
Release Date: 11/7/1995
Album Type: Explicit Lyrics
Genres: Pop, Rap & Hip-Hop
Styles: Gangsta & Hardcore, West Coast, Pop Rap
Number of Discs: 1
SwapaCD Credits: 1
Other Editions: Gangsta's paradise
UPCs: 016998114124, 016998114117, 081227882365, 5029831114132

Old-school hip-hop, which builds its sing-song raps atop samples of old funk and soul singles, may be on the way out, but in its twilight days it has yielded one more brilliant album, Coolio's Gangsta's Paradise. Coolio, the Compton rapper once known as Artis Ivey, creates tape loops of the catchiest sections from old songs by Smokey Robinson, the Isley Brothers, Billy Paul, and Herbie Hancock, and then raps his ghetto slice-of-life stories atop those loops. It's a familiar formula, but Coolio makes it fresh again, coming up with monologues strong enough to make us forget the original songs and get lost in his narratives. Moreover, Coolio drops his rhymes so they fall perfectly on the beats and even the melodies of the samples. --Geoffrey Himes

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CD Reviews

A classic CD
B. Dunn | OH, USA | 11/24/2004
(4 out of 5 stars)

"Gangsta's paradise (the song) still is one of my most played songs in my car. There are several other noteworthy songs too. With all the new rap CDs on the market now-a-days, sometimes it is just nice to kick back and listen to one of the classics."
Great 2nd album by Coolio
B. Dunn | 10/08/2002
(5 out of 5 stars)

"This was Coolio's first album after the phenominal It Takes A Thief. It was boosted by the smash-hit Gangsta's Paradise and made Coolio a huge name. The album is packed with catchy beats and tight lyrics. My best song on the album is Get Up Get Down guest starring WC which is ill. Other great songs are A Thing Goin' On, Exercise Yo' Game and Is This Me. I say check this album out if you are a fan of Coolio or even better check out his great debut, It Takes A Thief for some real old-school hip hop... Later"
The Highlight Of Coolio's Career (Rating: 7 out of 10- -3.5
Chandler | Atlanta (College Park), Georgia | 03/07/2008
(3 out of 5 stars)

"Back in late 1995, Coolio had his most popular single "Gangsta's Paradise" floating all through the airwaves. I must have been about 10 years old, and managed to learn that song in under an hour (almost 13 years later, I can barely remember any of the words). Coolio wasn't really the greatest rapper from the west coast, but the single "Gangsta's Paradise" was the jump that he needed to place himself to where he wanted to be in the rap game.

True, when you think of his name, that single pops up, but there was just more than that single that made him a good rapper. In fact a lot of the tracks bang, as Coolio talks mostly about the streets of L.A. "Ghetto Highlites" is a song how he talks about life in the ghetto. "Too Hot" is a great song about people being burned while not using protection using the Kool And The Gang song. Then he has some bouncy tracks like "1,2,3,4 (Sumpin' New)" which does sound a little cheesy but to me it's good.

Guest appearances are good though. I like "Crusin" featuring Malika. E-40, Kam, and Coolio's group 40 Thevez colab for "Exercize Yo Game". And W.C., 40 Thevez, Shorty, and Ras Kass, appear on "Get Up, Get Down". All dope songs. My favorite song on this album would be Coolio colabing with Will Wheaton on the song "Bright As The Sun".

Although good album, it flaws heavily. I personally think this album has too many recognizable interpolations, which makes the song sounds so cheesy. A perfect example would be "A Thing Going On", uses the chorus to "Me and Mrs. Jones". "Kinda High and Drunk" is another bad song.

Gangsta's Paradise is a very good album. It was one of the biggest highlight albums in late '95 carried over to '96. Unfortunately back then this album was played into the ground, and people were tired of Coolio (which might explain why his next album My Soul didn't sell like he wanted to). I wouldn't necessarly call Coolio a gangsta rapper. He just happened to be from the west and blew up when gangsta rap was at it's peak. This album here is great and is being sold for a penny, and it's well worth your purchase. Peace.

Lyrics: B
Production: B
Guest Appearances: A-
Musical Vibes: B+

Top 5 Tracks:
1. Bright As The Sun (featuring Will Wheaton)
2. Gangsta's Paradise (featuring L.V.)
3. Get Up, Get Down (featuring 40 Thevz, Shorty, Ras Kass, and W.C.)
4. Exercize Yo Game (featuring E-40, Kam, and 40 Thevz)
5. Crusin' (featuring Malika)

Honorable Mention:
1. Too Hot
2. 1,2,3,4 (Sumpin' New)"