20 Years Later: The Most Influential Albums of 1994

A look back at most memorable albums from two decades ago.

Standing the Test of Time - The '90s was a game-changing era for music with respect to hip hop and R&B. Artists in both genres pushed and prodded at their respective boundaries, transcending generational and demographical gaps, making hip hop palatable to the mainstream and redefining the rhythms and blues of Black communities.In honor of June being Black Music Month, BET.com takes a nostalgic trip to the past — 1994 to be exact — to reminisce on the top 20 most influential albums from 20 years ago. Read on to see which albums made our list. — Dominique Zonyeé (@DominiqueZonyee)(Photos from left: Columbia Records, Bad Boy, Atlantic)

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Standing the Test of Time - The '90s was a game-changing era for music with respect to hip hop and R&B. Artists in both genres pushed and prodded at their respective boundaries, transcending generational and demographical gaps, making hip hop palatable to the mainstream and redefining the rhythms and blues of Black communities.In honor of June being Black Music Month, BET.com takes a nostalgic trip to the past — 1994 to be exact — to reminisce on the top 20 most influential albums from 20 years ago. Read on to see which albums made our list. — Dominique Zonyeé (@DominiqueZonyee)(Photos from left: Columbia Records, Bad Boy, Atlantic)

Nas, Illmatic - The April 19 release date of Nas’s Illmatic is a landmark day in the history of American music. The album's introspective storyline detailing life in the mean, grimey streets of Queensbridge, New York, serves not only as the foundation of his living legend status, but also as a hip hop blueprint.With the assistance of jazz- and soul-influenced producers such as Large Professor, Pete Rock and DJ Premier, Nas's impact on society as a vivid storyteller with a profound take on linguistics was imprinted in every track from "It Ain't Hard to Tell" to "The World Is Yours." And it influenced the works of Jay Z, Common, Noreaga and Ghostface Killah, emboldening them to modify their delivery, opting for a slowed down, enunciated flow driven by a relaxed, poetic tongue.(Photo: Columbia Records)

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Nas, Illmatic - The April 19 release date of Nas’s Illmatic is a landmark day in the history of American music. The album's introspective storyline detailing life in the mean, grimey streets of Queensbridge, New York, serves not only as the foundation of his living legend status, but also as a hip hop blueprint.With the assistance of jazz- and soul-influenced producers such as Large Professor, Pete Rock and DJ Premier, Nas's impact on society as a vivid storyteller with a profound take on linguistics was imprinted in every track from "It Ain't Hard to Tell" to "The World Is Yours." And it influenced the works of Jay Z, Common, Noreaga and Ghostface Killah, emboldening them to modify their delivery, opting for a slowed down, enunciated flow driven by a relaxed, poetic tongue.(Photo: Columbia Records)

The Notorious B.I.G. - “Intro,” Ready To Die (1994) - The legendary intro takes listeners through a ride of Big’s life: birth, violent childhood, life of crime, and subsequent punishment with a backdrop of funk and old-school hip hop. Right before jumping into “Things Done Changed,” it was clear what listeners were going to get. There's another interlude on this one that brings more of the LOLs. It involves pickle juice, and you know exactly what we're talking about.(Photo: Bad Boy Records)

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The Notorious B.I.G., Ready to Die - When Biggie dropped Ready to Die on September 13, the West Coast had the rap game on lock, leaving the East Coast to desperately await its gangsta rap equivalent. The autobiographical album served as Bad Boy Records's debut release and featured soul and R&B elements with samples from the Isley Brothers, Isaac Hayes, R. Kelly and more. Big's skill as an imagery-driven storyteller coupled with Diddy's innovative production direction catapulted Bad Boy into the limelight and secured Big's legacy as one of the most beloved emcees of all time.It was the one and only album released during Biggie Smalls’s lifetime and eventually went multi-platinum.(Photo: Bad Boy)

Scarface, The Diary - After the Geto Boys dissolved, Scarface first emerged on his own with The World Is Yours, but it was his sophomore album, The Diary, released on October 18, that elevated his career due to rave reviews. Debuting at No. 2 on the Billboard 200 charts, the album, entirely produced by Mike Dean and led by the somber, timeless street chronicle, "I Seen a Man Die," solidified Face's place as a lyricist. In fact, it was so well regarded by the rap community that in December 2007 it became one of 22 albums to receive a perfect rating from XXL Magazine in hip hop's 40-year existence.(Photo: Rap-a-Lot Records)

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Scarface, The Diary - After the Geto Boys dissolved, Scarface first emerged on his own with The World Is Yours, but it was his sophomore album, The Diary, released on October 18, that elevated his career due to rave reviews. Debuting at No. 2 on the Billboard 200 charts, the album, entirely produced by Mike Dean and led by the somber, timeless street chronicle, "I Seen a Man Die," solidified Face's place as a lyricist. In fact, it was so well regarded by the rap community that in December 2007 it became one of 22 albums to receive a perfect rating from XXL Magazine in hip hop's 40-year existence.(Photo: Rap-a-Lot Records)

TLC, CrazySexyCool - On their second album, TLC shied away from their tom boy, condom wearing, rap-infused image to premiere a sexier and more mature sound. CrazySexyCool, was released on Nov. 15 and peaked at the No. 3 spot on the Billboard 200 charts. It would remain on the album charts for two years. Two of the collections hit singles,"Creep" and "Waterfalls," made TLC a household name and assisted the group in taking home two 1995 Grammy Awards for Best R&B Album and Best R&B Performance by a Duo or Group With Vocal. The phrase "Crazy Sexy Cool" became synonymous with TLC and inspired the 2013 biopic CrazySexyCool: The TLC Story.(Photo: Arista)

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TLC, CrazySexyCool - On their second album, TLC shied away from their tom boy, condom wearing, rap-infused image to premiere a sexier and more mature sound. CrazySexyCool, was released on Nov. 15 and peaked at the No. 3 spot on the Billboard 200 charts. It would remain on the album charts for two years. Two of the collections hit singles,"Creep" and "Waterfalls," made TLC a household name and assisted the group in taking home two 1995 Grammy Awards for Best R&B Album and Best R&B Performance by a Duo or Group With Vocal. The phrase "Crazy Sexy Cool" became synonymous with TLC and inspired the 2013 biopic CrazySexyCool: The TLC Story.(Photo: Arista)

 Aaliyah, Age Ain’t Nothing But a Number - With this boisterous title, a 15-year-old Aaliyah arrived in the music world with a mature, sultry sound, which was way ahead of her time — mainly due to her mentor (and then-hubby) R. Kelly. The album successfully captured Kellz' sexual prowess while maintaining the purity and innocence of the Detroit teenager. Her falsetto voice carefully wrapped with the perfect balance of rough beats and smooth melodies thrust Aaliyah into international stardom with the certified gold singles "At Your Best" and "Back & Forth" and with the title track, "Age Ain’t Nothing But a Number."

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 Aaliyah, Age Ain’t Nothing But a Number - With this boisterous title, a 15-year-old Aaliyah arrived in the music world with a mature, sultry sound, which was way ahead of her time — mainly due to her mentor (and then-hubby) R. Kelly. The album successfully captured Kellz' sexual prowess while maintaining the purity and innocence of the Detroit teenager. Her falsetto voice carefully wrapped with the perfect balance of rough beats and smooth melodies thrust Aaliyah into international stardom with the certified gold singles "At Your Best" and "Back & Forth" and with the title track, "Age Ain’t Nothing But a Number."

Da Brat, Funkdafied - This debut album from Da Brat was iconic because it sold more than one million copies, making her the first solo femcee to go platinum. Although Brat was raised in the Chicago area, Funkdafied, released on June 28, features strong West Coast elements, mainly borrowed from Snoop Dogg. The album was well received not only because of Jermaine Dupri's production chops, but because the Brat-tat-tat-tat fit right in with the fellas, painting herself as a hard-hitting chick who was "nothing to f—k with."The album featured the chart-topping singles "Funkdafied" and "Fa All Yall" and peaked at No.1 on the R&B charts (before there was rap chart, of course).(Photo: So So Def Records)

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Da Brat, Funkdafied - This debut album from Da Brat was iconic because it sold more than one million copies, making her the first solo femcee to go platinum. Although Brat was raised in the Chicago area, Funkdafied, released on June 28, features strong West Coast elements, mainly borrowed from Snoop Dogg. The album was well received not only because of Jermaine Dupri's production chops, but because the Brat-tat-tat-tat fit right in with the fellas, painting herself as a hard-hitting chick who was "nothing to f—k with."The album featured the chart-topping singles "Funkdafied" and "Fa All Yall" and peaked at No.1 on the R&B charts (before there was rap chart, of course).(Photo: So So Def Records)

Outkast, Southernplayalisticadillacmuzik - Outkast’s debut, Southernplayalisticadillacmuzik, was more like a grandiloquent announcement of the arrival of the South. The artistically creative album, released on April 26, was produced by Organized Noize. It featured a newly packaged sound blending thumping bass, live instruments and the imaginative storytelling of the Atlanta-based duo. André 3000 and Big Boi laid the foundation for the region's crossover respect with their uniqueness, a dose of humor, poetic plays on words and the perfect balance of energy, which showcased the duo's polar opposite personalities. Boasting two chart-topping singles, "Players Ball" and "Git Up Git Out," Southernplayalisticadillacmuzik will forever go down in history for putting ATL on the map in the midst of the East and West Coast ...

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Outkast, Southernplayalisticadillacmuzik - Outkast’s debut, Southernplayalisticadillacmuzik, was more like a grandiloquent announcement of the arrival of the South. The artistically creative album, released on April 26, was produced by Organized Noize. It featured a newly packaged sound blending thumping bass, live instruments and the imaginative storytelling of the Atlanta-based duo. André 3000 and Big Boi laid the foundation for the region's crossover respect with their uniqueness, a dose of humor, poetic plays on words and the perfect balance of energy, which showcased the duo's polar opposite personalities. Boasting two chart-topping singles, "Players Ball" and "Git Up Git Out," Southernplayalisticadillacmuzik will forever go down in history for putting ATL on the map in the midst of the East and West Coast ...

Brandy, Brandy - When a 15-year-old Brandy stepped on the scene with her debut self-titled album on September 27, she spoke for teenaged girls across the nation. The album's first single, "I Wanna Be Down," exemplified Brandy's innocence and yearning to be accepted not only by real-world peers, but by the industry as well, with an array of contemporary genres, including soul, R&B and hip hop, blended on the project.And the braids-sporting, apple jack hat-rocking singer's presence added a youthful element to the female R&B scene, which was then heavily dominated by Mary J. Blige and Janet Jackson.Brandy eventually reached multi-platinum status and international success.(Photo: Atlantic)

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Brandy, Brandy - When a 15-year-old Brandy stepped on the scene with her debut self-titled album on September 27, she spoke for teenaged girls across the nation. The album's first single, "I Wanna Be Down," exemplified Brandy's innocence and yearning to be accepted not only by real-world peers, but by the industry as well, with an array of contemporary genres, including soul, R&B and hip hop, blended on the project.And the braids-sporting, apple jack hat-rocking singer's presence added a youthful element to the female R&B scene, which was then heavily dominated by Mary J. Blige and Janet Jackson.Brandy eventually reached multi-platinum status and international success.(Photo: Atlantic)

Bone Thugs-N-Harmony, Creepin on ah Come Up - The Cleveland, Ohio-bred group Bone Thugs-N-Harmony rocked the music world by setting themselves apart from traditional gangsta rappers with their melodious, fast-paced street tales on their debut album.Led by the '94 summer anthem "Thuggish Ruggish Bone," Creepin on ah Come Up put the fivesome (Layzie Bone, Flesh-n-Bone, Bizzy Bone, Wish Bone and Krayzie Bone) on the map and was ranked on The Source magazine's Top 100 Best Rap Albums list in 2008, laying the foundation for their sophomore success, E. 1999 Eternal, the following year.With a co-sign by the late great Eazy E, who literally signed the group to his Ruthless Records and appeared on the track "For tha Love of Money," Bone Thugs went on to become one of the biggest-selling rap groups of ...

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Bone Thugs-N-Harmony, Creepin on ah Come Up - The Cleveland, Ohio-bred group Bone Thugs-N-Harmony rocked the music world by setting themselves apart from traditional gangsta rappers with their melodious, fast-paced street tales on their debut album.Led by the '94 summer anthem "Thuggish Ruggish Bone," Creepin on ah Come Up put the fivesome (Layzie Bone, Flesh-n-Bone, Bizzy Bone, Wish Bone and Krayzie Bone) on the map and was ranked on The Source magazine's Top 100 Best Rap Albums list in 2008, laying the foundation for their sophomore success, E. 1999 Eternal, the following year.With a co-sign by the late great Eazy E, who literally signed the group to his Ruthless Records and appeared on the track "For tha Love of Money," Bone Thugs went on to become one of the biggest-selling rap groups of ...

 M.O.P.,To the Death - Fresh off the heels of their well-received single "How About Some Hardcore," the Mash Out Posse dropped their first full-length album,To the Death, on April 7. The duo, comprised of Lil Fame and Billy Danzenie, were gangsta rappers with hard-hitting lyrics dedicated to the gun lovin' rough neck who could appreciate a good 'hood chronicle, capsulizing New York's take on the West Coast export, sans the soul and R&B elements.While the album failed to top commercial charts, it garnered a seal of approval from the streets, and frankly, that's all M.O.P.'s about.(Photo: Select Records)

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 M.O.P.,To the Death - Fresh off the heels of their well-received single "How About Some Hardcore," the Mash Out Posse dropped their first full-length album,To the Death, on April 7. The duo, comprised of Lil Fame and Billy Danzenie, were gangsta rappers with hard-hitting lyrics dedicated to the gun lovin' rough neck who could appreciate a good 'hood chronicle, capsulizing New York's take on the West Coast export, sans the soul and R&B elements.While the album failed to top commercial charts, it garnered a seal of approval from the streets, and frankly, that's all M.O.P.'s about.(Photo: Select Records)

Boyz II Men, II - Boyz II Men's second album, II, which debuted on August 5, solidified the quartet's status as mainstream mainstays. The group, which was discovered by New Edition member Michael Bivins, released the first single off of the album, "I'll Make Love to You," and it remained on the top of the charts for more than two months. II soon became the best-selling R&B collection of all time, selling more than seven million units.(Photo: Motown Records)

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Boyz II Men, II - Boyz II Men's second album, II, which debuted on August 5, solidified the quartet's status as mainstream mainstays. The group, which was discovered by New Edition member Michael Bivins, released the first single off of the album, "I'll Make Love to You," and it remained on the top of the charts for more than two months. II soon became the best-selling R&B collection of all time, selling more than seven million units.(Photo: Motown Records)

Method Man,Tical - Wu-Tang Clan was already established as an iconic movement in the rap game, but when Method Man dropped Tical, the first Wu solo release, he proved that the Clan had individual star power. An obvious production from RZA's dark murky chambers, the album peaked at No.1 on Billboard’s Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums chart and featured RZA, GZA and other major guests. On the lead single, "Bring the Pain," Meth stood on his own with his lyrical rawness, and it peaked at No. 1 on the dance charts.But even more memorable than Meth's first single is the Diddy-remixed version of "I'll Be There for You/You're All I Need to Get By," featuring Mary J. Blige. With the accompanying music video, the track catapulted to No. 3 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart.(Photo: Def Jam)

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Method Man,Tical - Wu-Tang Clan was already established as an iconic movement in the rap game, but when Method Man dropped Tical, the first Wu solo release, he proved that the Clan had individual star power. An obvious production from RZA's dark murky chambers, the album peaked at No.1 on Billboard’s Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums chart and featured RZA, GZA and other major guests. On the lead single, "Bring the Pain," Meth stood on his own with his lyrical rawness, and it peaked at No. 1 on the dance charts.But even more memorable than Meth's first single is the Diddy-remixed version of "I'll Be There for You/You're All I Need to Get By," featuring Mary J. Blige. With the accompanying music video, the track catapulted to No. 3 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart.(Photo: Def Jam)

Heavy D & The Boyz, Nuttin' But Love - Heavy D & The Boyz would have their most successful album with their last group effort on Nuttin’ But Love, released on May 24. With the help of super producers Eric Sermon, Pete Rock, Teddy Riley, Kid Capri and more, the Overweight Lover and crew hit the airwaves with hits from the lead single "Black Coffee" to the titular "Nuttin' But Love." But if enlisting an army of the best producers in the game was not enough, famous friends, including Queen Latifah, LL Cool J, Martin Lawrence and Kool G Rap, lent their voices on the album's opener "Friends & Respect."The album landed at No. 1 on Billboard’s Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums charts.(Photo: Uptown, MCA)

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Heavy D & The Boyz, Nuttin' But Love - Heavy D & The Boyz would have their most successful album with their last group effort on Nuttin’ But Love, released on May 24. With the help of super producers Eric Sermon, Pete Rock, Teddy Riley, Kid Capri and more, the Overweight Lover and crew hit the airwaves with hits from the lead single "Black Coffee" to the titular "Nuttin' But Love." But if enlisting an army of the best producers in the game was not enough, famous friends, including Queen Latifah, LL Cool J, Martin Lawrence and Kool G Rap, lent their voices on the album's opener "Friends & Respect."The album landed at No. 1 on Billboard’s Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums charts.(Photo: Uptown, MCA)

Underground Kingz, Super Tight... - UGK's Super Tight… won the duo of Bun B and Pimp C their first placement on the coveted Billboard 200, but wouldn't be properly appreciated until well after its release. The album, their second, released August 30, featured Louisiana funk band The Meters' lead guitarist Leo Nocentelli, who added jazz components and showcased the group's progression. It solidified their place in the Texas rap scene, especially with the reprise of "Pocket Full of Stones," and across the South, as T.I. would pay tribute on his 2006 album King with his remake of "Front, Back & Side to Side," called "Front Back" and featuring the duo.(Photo: Jive)

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Underground Kingz, Super Tight... - UGK's Super Tight… won the duo of Bun B and Pimp C their first placement on the coveted Billboard 200, but wouldn't be properly appreciated until well after its release. The album, their second, released August 30, featured Louisiana funk band The Meters' lead guitarist Leo Nocentelli, who added jazz components and showcased the group's progression. It solidified their place in the Texas rap scene, especially with the reprise of "Pocket Full of Stones," and across the South, as T.I. would pay tribute on his 2006 album King with his remake of "Front, Back & Side to Side," called "Front Back" and featuring the duo.(Photo: Jive)

Common, Resurrection - Chicago, traditionally known for its blues and jazz movement, became known for its emerging rap scene when Common dropped his sophomore effort, Resurrection, on October 25. The album would showcase Common Sense's poetic flow, cunning wit and dedication to carving his own niche in the rap game. The albums most prolific track, "I Used to Love H.E.R.," a love tale about hip-hop's decline, was the first sign of Common's quest to root social and political justice into the game, which was mainly dominated by gangsta rap.To accompany his sensible flow, Common tapped No I.D., the "Godfather of Chicago Hip Hop," to produce the entire album and the pair satisfactorily guided the Chi-Town rap scene as we know it today.(Photo: Relativity Records)

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Common, Resurrection - Chicago, traditionally known for its blues and jazz movement, became known for its emerging rap scene when Common dropped his sophomore effort, Resurrection, on October 25. The album would showcase Common Sense's poetic flow, cunning wit and dedication to carving his own niche in the rap game. The albums most prolific track, "I Used to Love H.E.R.," a love tale about hip-hop's decline, was the first sign of Common's quest to root social and political justice into the game, which was mainly dominated by gangsta rap.To accompany his sensible flow, Common tapped No I.D., the "Godfather of Chicago Hip Hop," to produce the entire album and the pair satisfactorily guided the Chi-Town rap scene as we know it today.(Photo: Relativity Records)

Mary J. Blige, My Life - The creative union between Mary J. Blige and this album's producer, Diddy, is uncanny. To this day, My Life, her sophomore album, released on November 29, is arguably one of Diddy's best productions ever, with its distinctive hip hop-soul sound, and is coveted as one of Mary's best — she penned most of the lyrics herself, outlining a pivotal time in her growth as heard on hit singles "You Bring Me Joy," "I'm Going Down" and "Be Happy."Together, they undoubtedly created the blueprint for '90s R&B. The album was nominated for a Grammy Award for Best R&B Album in 1995; that same year it was certified three times platinum. The album was so influential, in 2002 Blender magazine named it one of the 100 Greatest American Albums of All Time.(Photo: Uptown Records)

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Mary J. Blige, My Life - The creative union between Mary J. Blige and this album's producer, Diddy, is uncanny. To this day, My Life, her sophomore album, released on November 29, is arguably one of Diddy's best productions ever, with its distinctive hip hop-soul sound, and is coveted as one of Mary's best — she penned most of the lyrics herself, outlining a pivotal time in her growth as heard on hit singles "You Bring Me Joy," "I'm Going Down" and "Be Happy."Together, they undoubtedly created the blueprint for '90s R&B. The album was nominated for a Grammy Award for Best R&B Album in 1995; that same year it was certified three times platinum. The album was so influential, in 2002 Blender magazine named it one of the 100 Greatest American Albums of All Time.(Photo: Uptown Records)

Warren G, Regulate...G Funk Era - When Warren G released his debut album, Regulate...G Funk Era, on June 7, the West Coast had the rap game sewn up. The lead single, "Regulate," which features a soulful outline of gang life courtesy of Nate Dogg's vocal chops, transcended beyond the borders of Compton, pushing the album to three million copies sold in the U.S.The overall laid back sound coupled with Warren G’s hardcore lyrics was just the right mixture to garner street cred and commercial success. It debuted at No. 2 on the Billboard 200, selling 176,000 its opening week.(Photo: Def Jam, Violator)

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Warren G, Regulate...G Funk Era - When Warren G released his debut album, Regulate...G Funk Era, on June 7, the West Coast had the rap game sewn up. The lead single, "Regulate," which features a soulful outline of gang life courtesy of Nate Dogg's vocal chops, transcended beyond the borders of Compton, pushing the album to three million copies sold in the U.S.The overall laid back sound coupled with Warren G’s hardcore lyrics was just the right mixture to garner street cred and commercial success. It debuted at No. 2 on the Billboard 200, selling 176,000 its opening week.(Photo: Def Jam, Violator)

Beastie Boys, Ill Communication - This album was the Beastie Boys' fourth. Backed by a few mixtures of instruments (all three of the group members were trained musicians) and classic hip hop beats, the focal point of the album is the lyrical growth from Michael "Mike D" Diamond (vocals, drums), Adam "MCA" Yauch (vocals, bass) and Adam "Ad-Rock" Horovitz. The critical acclaim was so profound that Ill Communication became the group's second No. 1 album.(Photo: Capitol Records)

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Beastie Boys, Ill Communication - This album was the Beastie Boys' fourth. Backed by a few mixtures of instruments (all three of the group members were trained musicians) and classic hip hop beats, the focal point of the album is the lyrical growth from Michael "Mike D" Diamond (vocals, drums), Adam "MCA" Yauch (vocals, bass) and Adam "Ad-Rock" Horovitz. The critical acclaim was so profound that Ill Communication became the group's second No. 1 album.(Photo: Capitol Records)

Immature - Immature, led by Marques Houston, hit the music scene hard in 1992 with their debut album On Our Worst Behavior. With several more albums and hits to follow, the group also starred with Kid N' Play in House Party 3 and Marques went on to lend his voice to BeBe's Kids and also starred in Good Burger as well as the television series Sister, Sister.(Photo: MCA)

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Immature, Play Time Is Over - Pre-teens and teenagers across the nation found solace in Immature's Play Time Is Over. The boy band, ages 11 and 12 at the time and comprised of Marques "Batman" Houston, Jerome "Romeo" Jones and Kelton "LDB" Kessee, captured hearts the way young Frankie Lymon, Michael Jackson and Stevie Wonder did generations before, crooning about adolescent love and other youthful endeavors. The first two singles, "Never Lie" and "Constantly," pushed the tweeny trio to within reach of the Top 20.(Photo: MCA)

Blackstreet, BLACKstreet - Led by Teddy Riley and Chauncey Hannibal (the fathers of new jack swing, an style of music carefully blending techniques used in hip hop, pop and R&B), Blackstreet dominated the R&B charts with their self-titled debut. Thanks to Riley's genius and trendsetting ways, the group's first album showcased well-balanced harmony over commercially catchy bass-hitting beats. Blackstreet's notable singles, "Before I Left You Go," "Booti Call" and "Joy," helped the album earn platinum status and Riley's swingbeat touch on the album would help shape the sound of R&B for years to come.(Photo: Interscope)

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Blackstreet, BLACKstreet - Led by Teddy Riley and Chauncey Hannibal (the fathers of new jack swing, an style of music carefully blending techniques used in hip hop, pop and R&B), Blackstreet dominated the R&B charts with their self-titled debut. Thanks to Riley's genius and trendsetting ways, the group's first album showcased well-balanced harmony over commercially catchy bass-hitting beats. Blackstreet's notable singles, "Before I Left You Go," "Booti Call" and "Joy," helped the album earn platinum status and Riley's swingbeat touch on the album would help shape the sound of R&B for years to come.(Photo: Interscope)