Westside Gunn


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Bringing the sounds of '90s hardcore rap into the 21st century, Buffalo-bred rapper Westside Gunn emerged as an underdog from the underground alongside his brother and fellow emcee, Conway. With their tales of street life, drugs, and gun violence, the pair have employed sample-heavy production in the gritty East Coast tradition of the Lox, Mobb Deep, Capone-N-Noreaga, and the Wu-Tang Clan. In addition to his work with Conway and their Griselda labelmates, Westside Gunn branched out on his own with a series of mixtapes issued in the 2010s, as well as solo albums such as Flygod (2016), Supreme Blientele (2018), and Pray for Paris (2020), the latter of which cracked the upper half of the Billboard 200. Born Alvin Lamar Worthy in Buffalo, New York, Westside Gunn started rapping at a young age. In high school, he joined with Conway (born Demond Price) and fellow rappers Benny the Butcher and Machine Gun Black as the Forerunners. They stuck together over the years and in the early 2010s, they founded Griselda Records. In addition to output as Westside Gunn & Conway, Worthy began issuing his own mixtapes, including the Hitler Wears Hermes series, which kicked off in 2012. With his strong, steady rhymes and often laid-back production, he released five installments of the Hermes series into 2017. His debut studio full-length, Flygod, arrived in 2016 and featured appearances by Benny, Conway, Roc Marciano, Danny Brown, Action Bronson, and more, as well as production by Statik Selektah and the Alchemist. In 2017, Griselda inked a deal with Eminem's Shady Records, which graduated Westside Gunn to the majors. That same year, he hopped onto a collaboration with MF Doom titled WestsideDoom and a year later, he issued his sophomore LP, Supreme Blientele, which featured many familiar faces from Flygod, as well as new guests Jadakiss, Busta Rhymes, Anderson .Paak, and producers Pete Rock and 9th Wonder. After Griselda hit the Top Ten of Billboard's R&B/hip-hop and rap charts with WWCD, Westside issued the 2020 solo album Pray for Paris. DJ Premier, DJ Muggs, the Alchemist, and Tyler, The Creator were among the contributors to the set, which entered the Billboard 200 at number 67 and the R&B/hip-hop chart at 39. ~ Neil Z. Yeung, Rovi