Compton rapper the Game emerged as one of the early 2000s’ rawest voices on the West Coast hip-hop scene, with intense autobiographical narratives and a hungry need to assert his lyrical presence. His forceful talent was established from his 2005 studio debut The Documentary, and the rapper moved tirelessly for the next decade and a half, releasing a non-stop string of mixtapes, singles, and excellent albums including 2008’s LAX, 2011’s The R.E.D. Album, and 2019’s Born 2 Rap.
Soon Game and 50 Cent were at war over the former’s reluctance to beef with any and every enemy of G-Unit. Freestyles and mixtapes were spawned in amazing amounts from both sides, and every time a truce seemed possible, things fell apart at the last minute. Dr. Dre was stuck in the middle, and while he never publicly denounced the Game, he passed on working with the rapper for his next effort. Despite Dre‘s absence, Game‘s sophomore release kept its original title of Doctor’s Advocate when it was released in late 2006. Two years later, LAX was released. With fewer mentions of Dr. Dre and 50 Cent, the uneven album found the rapper moving on from his previous obsessions. After periods of retirement talk, the MC had a change of heart and began recording The R.E.D. Album (“R.E.D.” being short for “rededicated”). After several delays and the release of numerous promotional singles, the album was released in August 2011.
In June 2019, the Game released “West Side,” the first single off his ninth album, Born 2 Rap, which was released later that year, landing at number 19 on the Billboard 200. It featured guest appearances by Dom Kennedy, Ed Sheeran, 21 Savage, Anderson .Paak, and others. The rapper had previously announced that it would be his final studio album. He nonetheless returned in 2020 with the non-album single “A.I. with the Braids,” an homage to NBA star Allen Iverson featuring Lil Wayne.