Shock G, the rapper, producer and musician born Gregory Edward Jacobs who flipped the funk for a new generation and introduced the world to Tupac Shakur as the leader of Bay Area hip-hop collective Digital Underground, has died. His death was confirmed by the office of the medical examiner in Hillsborough County, Florida. He was 57 years old.

As the galvanizing force behind Digital Underground, Shock G wore many hats, literally and figuratively. An introspective songwriter and party starter, he corralled a hodge-podge of hip-hop talent — the group’s members included Money B and DJ Fuze — within a big-tent collective that sounded like a carnival on wax.

Born in New York City, Greg Jacobs spent his teen years in Tampa, Fla. before moving to Oakland and becoming a foundational figure in West Coast hip-hop. In the early ’90s, when the East Coast was still enamored with sampling the Godfather of Funk, James Brown, Digital Underground was one of the early rap groups whose production borrowed heavily from the next iteration of funk, Parliament Funkadelic and founder George Clinton.

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