By Sowmya Krishnamurthy
Tonight Vh1 featured the 40 greatest and most memorable moments from the classic hip-hop show, “Yo! MTV Raps.” Hosted by Ed Lover and Doctor Dre (the original Yo! personalities) and comedians including Sherrod Small, the show digs into the annals of rap history.
The 40 greatest moments showcase how a sub-culture turned into general pop culture and highlights classic performances and appearances including Naughty By Nature performing their hit “O.P.P.” (which also inspired an MTV theme song of the same tune), Ed Lover and Dre hilariously impersonating Snoop Dogg and Dre and the late great 2Pac Shakur sharing his Black Panther roots with host Fab 5 Freddy.
A variety of then-young artists made their way to the Yo! set from Wu-Tang Clan and the Notorious B.I.G. to Salt ’N Pepa and Will Prince and Jazzy Jeff. Even a young J. Lo made an appearance as a back-up dancer to MC Hammer!
There were also an array of cultural milestones on the show, like the first time mainstream America was introduced to the low riders of Los Angeles, which eventually became a West Coast rap music video staple.
Doctor Dre dubs getting “clowned” by Eddie Murphy as his personal favorite moment when, Dre’s tight-fitting, multicolored leather jacket was the target of Murphy’s incisive humor.
Fans on Twitter chimed in on the nostalgia. “#uknowugrewupwithhiphop if you remember yo @MTV raps with@fab5freddyy” said one while another tweeted, “Anybody on my TL old enough to remember YO! MTV raps?”