Roxanne Shanté

The Best of Cold Chillin'

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Most hip-hop fans wouldn't recognize a single track from Roxanne Shanté other than "Roxanne's Revenge," making some wonder whether The Best of Cold Chillin' is worth it when compared to all the great compilations that include her lone rap classic. There's a case to be made, though, since "Roxanne's Revenge" was her first single and she greatly improved over five years of recording. She found her niche quite soon, as evidenced by tough, no-nonsense beats-and-rhymes tracks like "Bite This" and "The Payback." Also, Shanté's "Def Fresh Crew" featured a lovable human beatbox named Biz Markie, and the future commercial king of Cold Chillin' makes a great appearance on "Def Fresh Crew." (Another all-time rapper, Kool G Rap, stops by for "Deadly Rhymes.") Listeners might be surprised at the quality of material here, but all in all The Best of Cold Chillin' definitely works best for golden-age fans who want to get back in the mood with a few period tracks they haven't heard before.

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