Digital Underground founder and hip-hop legend Shock G dies at 57
Hip-hop legend and Digital Underground founder Greg "Shock G" Jacobs has died at 57, EW has confirmed. The Hillsborough County Medical Examiner's office reports Jacobs' manner and cause of death are pending further study.
TMZ reports that Jacobs' father Edward Racker said his son was found dead Thursday at a Tampa hotel. An autopsy is pending and could take up to 120 days.
Underground co-founder Jimi "Chopmaster J" Dright shared a tribute to his longtime friend on Instagram.
"34 years ago almost to the day we had a wild idea we can be a hip-hop band and take on the world through it all," wrote Dright. "The dream became a reality and the reality became a nightmare for some. And now he's awaken from the fame long live shock G Aka Humpty Hump and Rest In Peace my Brotha Greg Jacobs!!!"
Jacobs, Dright, and the late Kenneth "Kenny K" Waters founded the Oakland-based Digital Underground in the '80s, eventually signing with Tommy Boy Records. Their debut single "Doowutchyalike" was featured on their album Sex Packets. Though an underground favorite, its success would be eclipsed by the group's biggest commercial hit "The Humpty Dance" featuring Shock G as his alter ego Humpty Hump.
The Humpty Hump persona would become synonymous with Digital Underground due to his wild behavior, funky outfits, and — most notably — his glasses and nose prop that made him look like a long lost Marx brother.
Jacobs appeared on various scripted and unscripted TV shows and made a cameo alongside Digital Underground in the 1991 comedy Nothing But Trouble, but most notably helped to put Tupac Shakur on the map.
Before taking his place at the top of the rap charts, Tupac was a roadie and backup dancer for the Underground, later appearing on two albums.
When Tupac decided to go solo, Shock G co-produced his debut album 2Pacalypse Now in 1991, followed by his breakthrough single "I Get Around" and "So Many Tears," both off his third studio album Me Against the World. He also made guest appearances on multiple songs throughout the years before Shakur's untimely death in 1996.
Shock G also famously produced hits for Dr. Dre, Monie Love, Bobby Brown, Luniz, and KRS-One.