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Rakim was born on January 28

The god emcee Rakim was born William Michael Griffin Jr. in Long Island’s Wyandanch. He defined the rapper as the main attraction in a du with his DJ/ Producer Eric B. His records include “Paid in Full,” “Respect the Technique,” and “Waiting for the World to End.”

They established a new type of rhyming and scratching in the ’80s and ’90s that involved consciousness and spirituality. He opened the door for rappers like Nas and Jay Electronica. He’s worked with KRS One, Kanye West, DJ Premier, and others.