A pioneer of the West Coast hip hop movement, Todd Anthony Shaw -- aka Too Short -- burst onto the scene with 1989's Life Is��_Too Short, which established the Californian as a force in both the hip hop and rap worlds. With its controversial lyrics and funk riffs, the album paved the way for collaborations with other notable artists of the genre.
Too Short's background
Too Short was born in 1966 in South Central Los Angeles. After moving north to Oakland in the '80s, he became a drummer in his high school band. His debut album, Don't Stop Rappin', was released in 1985. In the '90s, Too Short appeared on The Notorious B.I.G. album Life After Death on the song "The World is Filled��_" The collaboration helped boost Too Short's popularity -- not just with his own hip hop fan base, but with fans of gangsta rap. In 1993, Too Short made his acting debut as Lew-Loc in the film Menace II Society.
Too Short continued performing through the '90s into the new millennium, releasing three well-received albums between 2000 and 2003. His 1990 song "The Ghetto" was featured in the video game Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas. In 2008, VH1 honored Too Short -- along with other notable hip hop artists -- at their "Hip Hop Honors" awards show. He appeared on Lady Gaga's 2013 album Artpop, with a cameo on "Jewels n' Drugs."
Too Short's biggest hits
In 2006, Too Short released a greatest hits album, Mack of the Century��_Too Short's Greatest Hits. It includes the songs "Freaky Tales," "I Ain't Trippin," "I'm a Player," "In the Trunk" and "Gettin' It," a collaboration with the funk band Parliament.