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Paid In Full (Expanded)

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Editors’ Notes

One of the most intense dissections of game ever recorded, Paid in Full is spoken not from the perspective of a witness but as willing participant. The moments captured on this classic reflects a mindset later emulated by Nas, Biggie, 2Pac and the rest. Rakim reveals potential dangers unseen by the naked eye. Scarier, Ra demonstrates the multiple ways an MC can play themselves with an economy of words that, when stitched together, present an epic narrative worthy of a Martin Scorsese movie. "Move the Crowd," "I Ain't No Joke," "I Know You Got Soul," and "As My Rhyme Goes On" are all amazingly cinematic. An absolute classic.

Customer Reviews

Spaces and Places i've been...

It's been a little over 20 years since i walked into The Wiz record store in New York City, to buy this album. I remember looking at the cover while trying my best to guess, which person was Eric B. and which was Rakim. This was the time i grew up in... music videos were complete luxuries and DJ's were highly respected. They "broke" records, played them religiously and didn't need payola to play them. Many of the songs on this album were 12-inch singles, that were released pretty far from one another. "Eric B. for President/My Melody" was released on the Zaakia label... and what a hard record that was to find. "I Know You Got Soul" was released on the 4th & Broadway label... almost a year later. By the time this record came out... it was the lead single "Paid In Full" that would be its selling point... and also the song that would take this duo to the legendary status. As i think back to my feelings of playing this album for the first time, i can remember loving to have my favorite songs on one piece of vinyl. Would i have said that this album was a classic back then? No. There were songs i didn't like and not enough songs that i hadn't already heard... but i oh how i loved this group. The rawness and maturity level i felt when listening to Rakim spit... the first-time usage of certain samples while replaying classic R&B grooves over them... the outfits they wore and the ways that they wore them - resembled the high rollers on my block... i felt like the streets were being brought to a unique place that i could not stray from. To say that this album is a classic means nothing to me... but the classic-ness of the times it came out in, is what it was really all about.

The Bible of Rap

This album is the Bible of Rap. When it dropped, it made us realize what rap was meant to be. Rakim is the smoothest rapper in the whole ENTIRE world and no one can touch him. This album represents what rap is all about. Snoop, Jay-Z and all you others out there.......have a seat, class is in session.

yo this is amazing

every 1 knos this a classic but yo no one talks bout eric b so imma say it eric b is the sickest dj of all time and rakim is one of the best emcees. So lil nelly and 50 cent lovers be quiet school is in session


Formed: 1985 in Queens, New York, NY

Genre: Hip-Hop/Rap

Years Active: '80s, '90s

They never had a mainstream hit of their own, but during rap's so-called golden age in the late '80s, Eric B. & Rakim were almost universally recognized as the premier DJ/MC team in all of hip-hop. Not only was their chemistry superb, but individually, each represented the absolute state of the art in their respective skills. Eric B. was a hugely influential DJ and beatmaker whose taste for hard-hitting James Brown samples touched off a stampede through the Godfather of Soul's back catalog that continues...
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