Top 20 Hip Hop Crews (10 – 1)

Finishing off the countdown of the Top 20 Hip Hop Crews/ Collectives of The Golden, Silver, and Bronze Eras …

For Numbers 20 – 11 Click Here!

10. Murder Inc.

Later called “The INC” The crew, group, label founded by Irv and Chris Gotti along with Ja Rule blended Hip Hop and R&B more so than any other group (For better or worse) changed a lot of hip hop for a few years
Ja Rule, Vita, Charli Baltimore, and Ashanti … later Bobby Brown; Lil Mo was also associated with the crew
In 2000 they released “Irv Gotti Presents: The Murderers” which also featured Black Child, Tah Murdah, and others
Currently the crew and label are not making any music but rumors are that they will be back (with probably a different roster)

9. No Limit

Created by Master P, the label and crew (Originally started on the West Coast) Took the South by storm in 1994 – 1995 really ushering in the new wave of Southern Hip Hop from where Rap A Lot and The Geto Boys left off
No Limit was known for its flashy album covers, distinct sound, and enormous roster which eventually included Snoop Dogg
Also inspired 2 Hood Classic films (Straight to DVD of course) … No Limit even briefly had a stint as a Wrestling Tag Team in WCW

Albums: I’m bout it (Soundtrack), I Got The Hook Up, Mean Green, We Can’t Be Stopped
Members: Silkk The Shocker, C- Murder, Master P, Mia X, Mystikal, Kane & Able, Mr. Serv-On, Big Ed, King George, Cali G, and Tre-8

8. Boot Camp Clik

The Underground Crew from Brooklyn (Brownsville) started with Buckshot and Black Moon who made their debut in ’92 who then put on Smif N Wessun on their first album which featured “Cession at da Doghillee” and then helped put Heltah Skeltah on which then created The Fab 5 with OGC
The Entire Crew released Four complete albums … all to mixed reviews but each featured some strong tracks and production, definitely one of the more original and unique crews in Hip Hop History

Albums: For the People (’97), The Chosen Few (’02), The Last Stand (’06), Casualties of War (’07)
Members: Buckshot, Steele, Tek, Rock, Ruck, Louieville Sluggah, Starang Wondah, Top Dog

7. Ruff Ryders

The Ruff Ryders which started out as a management became a crew and a label in the late 90s after DMX dropped and blew up with his debut “It’s Dark and Hell is Hot”
Known for the Swizz Beatz production and Motorcycles almost more than the emceeing The Ruff Ryder crew held Hip Hop down for the tail end of the 90s

Albums: Ryde or Die Vols 1 – 3, The Redemption
Members: DMX, Jadakiss, Styles P, Sheek Louch, Eve, Drag-On, Swizz Beatz (Even 106 & Park Winner Jin eventually joined up)

6. The Firm

The Firm as a crew was more of a Supergroup formed by Nas during the mid-90s During the Years of Raekwon’s OB4CL and Mobb Deep’s Survival of the Fittest when the Mafioso lyrics and the Aliases
were prevalent in Hip Hop Nas recorded “Affirmative Action” on his “It was Written” album and officially debut the Firm Crew to the world, one of the most anticipated albums and hottest cliques in Hip Hop at the time
Sadly only released one underrated group album

Album: The Album
Members: Nas, AZ, Foxy Brown, Nature, Cormega

5. Wu Tang Clan

Not much needs to be said about Staten Island’s *and Brooklyn’s* finest (Shaolin) clearly one of the most influential crews in Hip Hop History
Not only did they enter Hip Hop with a classic as a crew in an unprecedented move each member signed individual solo contracts with different labels
Wu Tang was a movement and spawned tons of classic slang, albums, video games, and fashion

Albums: Enter the Wu Tang (36 Chambers), Wu Tang Forever, The W, Iron Flag, 8 Diagrams
Members: The RZA, The GZA, Ol Dirty Bastard, Inspectah Deck, Raekwon The Chef, Ghostface Killah, U-God, Masta Killa, Method Man, Cappadonna

4. BDP

Boogie Down Productions … will always get paid, we’ll take the wackest songs … and make them better …

The Bronx Crew created by KRS One and DJ Scott La Rock were responsible for a ton of battle records as well as a ton of Hip Hop Anthems
The Bronx vs. Queens via KRS doing battle with an early form of the Juice Crew lit Hip Hop’s fuse as it blended the streets with incredible rhymes
Also introduced the world to D-Nice who provided the Beatbox at the time; The Blastmaster also responsible for infusing reggae into Hip Hop at a very early time

Albums: Criminal Minded, By All Means Necessary, Ghetto Music: The Blueprint of Hip Hop, Edutainment, Sex and Violence
Members: KRS – One, DJ Scott La Rock, D Nice, Kenny Parker

3. Hit Squad

The Hit Squad created by Erick and Parrish of EPMD, on the Unfinished Business album featured K-Solo, The Song “Hit Squad Heist” on the following album alerted people that they were coming and then on Business Never Personal in 1992 they made the song “Head Banger”
This featured the majority of the Hit Squad … on subsequent albums and singles by EPMD and Erick Sermon we were introduced to the remaining members
Even with the split and the formation of the Def Squad the Hit Squad is still one of the dopest crews hip hop music has seen

Albums: (None) – El Nino (Def Squad)
Members: EPMD, K-Solo, Redman, Das EFX, Keith Murray, DJ Scratch

2. Native Tongues

The Tongues, was a movement … when Hip Hop was moving uniformly in one direction these like-minded individuals came together and went the total opposite direction
Created by the De La Soul and The Jungle Brothers they progressively added on and created one of the most eclectic groups Hip Hop has ever seen
Songs like Buddy and Scenario, A Roller Skating Jam and The Promos 1 and 2 … and more; they never made a complete album together but their place in Hip Hop is etched in stone

Albums: (None)
Members: Trugoy, Maseo, Posdnous, Mike Gee, Baby Bam, Sammy B, Phife, Ali Shaeed, Muhammad, Jarobi, Q-Tip, Monie Love, Queen Latifah, Chi Ali, Dres, Mista Lawnge

1. Juice Crew

THE CREW … Number 1 It HAD To Be The Juice Crew!
The Juice Crew is Hip Hop … featuring 2 of the top 5 greatest lyricists in Hip Hop History, Marley Marl production, The most feared female emcee of the 80s, The man that put Queens on the map (and indirectly started the Bridge wars with BDP), One of the most respected Beatbox artists ever, and more
The Juice Crew had Hip Hop as a whole on lock in the mid-80s between Shan vs. LL, Shan vs. KRS, the Roxanne Wars, and The Symphony; not more needs to be said.

Albums: In Control Vol 1, In Control Vol 2
Members: Marley Marl, Roxanne Shante, MC Shan, Mr. Magic, Big Daddy Kane, Craig G, Tragedy, Biz Markie, TJ Swann, Glamorous, Masta Ace, Grand Daddy IU, DJ Polo

Okay, so that’s the list!

Special shoutouts to The Hilltop crew (Steady B, Three Times Dope, and Cool C), Diggin in the Crates Crew (Diamond D, Showbiz & A.G., Buckwild, O.C., Fat Joe, Lord Finesse, Big L), and a buncha others

What do you think?
Who was missed?
Who went too high or too low?

Comments –>>

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  • Big Ham

    This is one of the worst list that I have ever seen. The Firm, and The Commisson, but no Hieroglyphics.

  • Represent

    WHAT THE HELL!!! NO D.I.T.C BUT TERROR SQUAD?!? And the ONE firm album was shit. What a joke

  • Visionoyd

    Whatttt, I’m sorry but the Dungeon Family should be rated a whole lot higher. They the only crew with multiple members that are still current. Andre 3000, Big Boi, Killer Mike, The Goodie Mob (Cee lo, Gipp, Khujo, T MO), Big Rube AND Organized Noize. Add Future, Joi, Janelle Monae, and yes Coolbreeze.

  • Machete

    I know this is old but I must comment. Even allowing for subjectivity, this list is crap. 1 through 3 are reasonable. 4, I’d disagree butI can see the argument. NWA & Posse should count as a crew and isn’t listed here, Hiero isn’t listed, which is insane. Wu should be higher. The Firm? The Commission? C’mon son … No Limit? You might as well put Death Row as a clique, then. Clown list, son.