Hopefully I don't come across as overly aggressive as is my propensity, but I do encourage others to contribute to the thread if they like. Whether it's their own lists or music discussion in general, I'm game.
The very first 'rap' album I ever bought was the soundtrack to Breakin'. While that record didn't really hold up so well, it was a catalyst for me personally and the late 80s and early 90s were a bountiful breeding ground for the first generation of hip-hop and rap artists.
For the sake of splitting the group, let's just say Eminem (as much as I'm not a fan) was the game changer leading into the new millennium. At this time in my life I wasn't following music as closely as I had in the past, but I didn't have my head in the sand either. I'm subsequently trying to make up for lost time as well, exploring artists that flew under my radar over the last decade or so.
Odds & Ends
While I find that the genre has issues as far as artists putting out solid front-to-back efforts, there are simply too many fantastic hip-hop albums that haven't made my lists yet. So, here's just a bunch of really cool shit, some popular, some not so much, but all stuff I dig as well put together bodies of work.