Original Gangstas featured blaxploitation stars Pam Grier, Fred Williamson, and Jim Brown updating their classic roles for the '90s. The soundtrack takes a different approach than the film. Instead of bringing back '70s soul stars, it is filled with hip-hop stars that update '70s soul and funk for the '90s. The music is appropriately eclectic, weaving between smooth soul and gritty, street-oriented gangsta rap from newcomers like Luniz and E-40, as well as veterans like Ice-T, MC Ren, and the Geto Boys. Not only is the mix entertaining, but it offers a good idea of what hip-hop is all about in the mid-'90s.
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AllMusic Review by Stephen Thomas Erlewine