Shock G of the pioneering hip-hop group Digital Underground has died at the age of 57 according to an Instagram post by fellow Digital Underground co-founder Chopmaster J. His father, Edward Racker, also confirmed the news to TMZ.
Born Gregory Jacobs in Brooklyn, Shock G found success in the hip-hop world after moving to Oakland and forming Digital Underground in 1987. As the leader of the collective that featured dozens of rappers and producers, including 2Pac, Money-B, DJ Fuze, and Stretch, Jacobs became a powerful and influential figure within California’s growing rap scene throughout the late ’80s and early ’90s.
On the group’s debut album, 1990’s Sex Packets, Jacobs donned his alter ego of Humpty Hump to perform the timeless classic of “The Humpty Dance.” A year later, he co-produced 2Pac’s debut album, 2Pacalypse Now.
In addition to a two-decade career with Digital Underground and dozens of production credits for other artists like Dr. Dre and KRS-One, Shock G’s solo discography includes 2004’s Fear of a Mixed Planet and several singles and features with everyone from George Clinton to Ice Cube.
Known for his ability to create a multitude of convincing personalities, characters, and aliases for his work, Jacobs was always focused on transforming the world around him through his music.
“I’m trying to change the world with art,” he told XXL in a 1998 interview. “I’m not trying to get rich. I even still have the same car I bought when we put out that first album.”
See the tribute from Chopmaster J below.