26. Ice-T, Rhyme Pays (1987)
Label: Sire, Warner Bros.
Yes, Ice-T's debut album is an obvious play off the old adage "crime pays," but it works so well because for Ice, a former pimp and drug dealer, rhyme and crime were so closely linked. The lead single, "6 'N the Mornin'," is one of gangsta rap's defining documents; "Somebody Gotta Do It (Pimpin' Ain't Easy!!!)" dished on Ice's former profession; and "Squeeze The Trigger" is self-explanatory. No wonder it was the first hip-hop album to receive the Parental Advisory label.