"Rebel Without a Pause," Public Enemy

This for me was the song that bridged the era of Grandmaster Flash and the Furious Five's "The Message" with the pro-black Afrocentricity of the '90s. PE brought it hard and made no apologies.

"Just a Friendly Game of Baseball," Main Source

My favorite Main Source track. Large Professor's analogy of using baseball to describe police brutality is simply genius!

"I Gave You Power," NAS

NAS is one of the sickest lyricists of all time, period!

"Paid in Full," Eric B. & Rakim

Rakim tells the story of the American dream: "gettin paid." What's dope is that he tells it in a way that we all can relate to!

"Rockit," Herbie Hancock

The first jazz song to incorporate scratches. What more do I have to say?!

SEE IT: Rob Swift plays Someday Lounge on Saturday, Jan. 9. 9 pm. $10. 21+.