Too Short

Too Short

Infobox Musical artist
Name = Too Short

Img_capt =
Background = solo_singer
Birth_name = Todd Anthony Shaw
Alias = Short Dawg, Shorty the Pimp, Too Short Baby, The One and Only, Playboy Short
Born = birth date and age|1966|4|28 small|Oakland, California, United States
Origin = Oakland, California
Instrument = Vocals
Genre = Hip hop
Occupation = Emcee/PimP By Blood
Years_active = 1980–present
Label = Dangerous Music Jive/Zomba/SBMG Records
Associated_acts = E-40, Jazze Pha, Ant Banks, Rappin' 4-Tay, Ice Cube, Snoop Dogg, Mistah F.A.B., MC Breed, UGK, The Pack, Big Tray, Tupac, Spice 1
URL = []

Todd Anthony Shaw (born April 28 1966), better known by his stage name Too Short (seen on album covers as Too $hort), is an American rapper who started his career at the age of fourteen in Oakland, California.Bush, John. [ Too Short - Biography] . Allmusic. Last accessed Sept. 16, 2007.]


Shaw was born in South Los Angeles, California, and raised in East Oakland, California during his teenage years. In the early 1980s, Short produced custom raps (called "special requests") for people with his high school friend, Freddy B. In 1983, Too Short released his first album, "Don't Stop Rappin'", on the local label 75 Girls. This and his next three releases featured raw, simple drum beats using a LinnDrum drum machine in the early 1980s, switching to mostly the TR-808 and TR-909 by the mid-to-late 1980s. In 1986, Too Short and Freddie B. founded the Dangerous Music record label to distribute his music regionally. Dangerous Music later changed names to Short Records, and then Up All Nite Records. With his 1988 release, "Life Is...Too Short", he began infusing replayed established funk riffs (rather than samples) with his beats. It was then that he began to develop a noticeable fan base and a string of platinum albums."Too Short's songs are principally recognizable for their emphasis on Pimpin' and related sexually charged topics. With the rise of gangsta rap in the late 1980s/early 1990s, his style found a natural place in mainstream rap. Too Short's popularity peaked in the 1990s with "Short Dog's in the House" in 1990 and "Shorty the Pimp" in 1992. The latter included songs such as "No Love from Oakland", "Hoes," and "Step Daddy," all of which deal with his exploits as a pimp. While "macking hoes" was a common topic in other gangsta rap of the time, particularly the popular rap put out by Death Row Records, it should be noted that Too Short lacked certain thematic elements associated with the genre. His work chronologically straddled the rise and decline of gangsta rap, and never really dealt with guns, killing, drugs, or gangs, but rather focused on the lifestyle of a pimp, the music industry, and sex. His music style is unique in the fact of using real drums and bass on most of his songs. Something that is rarely done in the mainstream "rap" industry.

Subsequent work including "Get in Where You Fit In" (1993), and "Cocktails" (1995), dealt with similar issues. He retired from full-time solo rap with the 1996 release of "Gettin' It".

Subsequent work was primarily collaborative, including work with Diddy, The Notorious B.I.G., Scarface, UGK, Jay-Z, and Snoop Dogg. He appeared TWDY's hit single "Player's Holiday" from their 1999 debut album "Derty Werk" [ [ TWDY - "Player's Holiday"] - Allmusic.] as well as the Priority Records compilation "Nuthin but a Gangsta Party". [Wilson, MacKenzie. [ "Nuthin' but a Gangsta Party" - Overview] . Allmusic] After these appearances, he began working on his eleventh album, "Can't Stay Away". The album included guest appearances by 8Ball & MJG, Jay-Z, Jermaine Dupri, Sean Combs, E-40, Daz Dillinger, Lil' Jon, Soopafly, Scarface and B-Legit. [ [ Too $hort Adds Puffy Track To Upcoming LP] . MTV: June 29, 1999.] Too Short relocated to Atlanta in 1994, but he really didn't begin working with a more diverse variety of southern artists until 2000 including Lil Jon. Once 1999's "Can't Stay Away" was released, Too Short fully came out of retirement and released a number of new albums within the next few years, most of them taking on a crunk or Dirty South type sound, as he had become involved in the Southern Rap scene. However, he didn't totally give up on his trademark funk grooves or sexually explicit style. New albums released 2000-2003 were "You Nasty" (2000), "Chase the Cat" (2001), "What's My Favorite Word?" (2002), and "Married to the Game" (2003). These albums all charted fairly well, as they all were in the top 71 of the Billboard Hot 200, but they didn't do quite as well as Too Short's earlier 1990s releases as none of them reached the top 10. [|SHORT&sql=11:jzfoxqqgldje~T50 allmusic ((( Too Short > Charts & Awards > Billboard Albums ))) ] ] .

In 2004, his earlier 1990 single "The Ghetto" appeared on popular videogame "", playing on West Coast hip hop radio station Radio Los Santos.

For his next album, 2006's "Blow the Whistle", Too Short now took advantage of the new hyphy rap music that was emerging out of his original home base in Oakland, CA. This saw somewhat of a resurgence for Too Short as it peaked at #14 on the Billboard Hot 200, much better than each of his previous three releases. . However, his subsequent releases, such as 2007's "Get Off the Stage", have not been as successful.

On October 7, 2008 Too Short was honored by VH1 at the fifth annual "Hip-Hop Honors" along with Cypress Hill, De La Soul, Slick Rick and Naughty By Nature. Fact|date=September 2008


Although he is not usually considered a true gangsta rapper because the topics covered were almost solely about sex and rarely touched on other aspects of the "gangsta" lifestyle, Too Short nonetheless had influence in early and modern gangsta rap. Too Short's songs had a great influence on Ice Cube's (rapper and songwriter for N.W.A) early writing. [ [ Welcome to Encyclopædia Britannica's Guide to Black History ] ] Following his relocation to Atlanta, he worked with a variety of snap and crunk artists. While most older rappers from the late 1980s-early 1990s (the so-called Golden age of hip hop) have criticized those genres for their lack of lyrical complexity or content, Too Short has been one of the few active in that time to embrace the new styles. [ [ Bay Area beats - Music - The Phoenix ] ] Because of Too Short's normal rap topic of pimpin', he isn't credited with making uplifting, positive and political songs. However, he has made several songs encouraging people to survive, stop drug use, not to be a gangster and get money. Such songs include famous hits, "The Ghetto" and "Gettin' It".

Too Short has influenced many rappers who claim themselves as a pimp such as Snoop Dogg. His flamboyant use of the word "Bitch" (pronounced as "BeeITCH" or "Biatch") that he has used since the Born to Mack album has been picked up and emulated by various other rappers (and popularized in the mainstream by Snoop Dogg) and was turned into a popular slang vernacular used in other mediums, such as radio, television, and movies. Other artists have gained much influence from his lyrics which include E-40, Rappin' 4-Tay, Mac Mall, Lupe Fiasco, The Dogg Pound, Lil Wayne, MC Eiht, Spice 1, Eminem, Young Buck, Turf Talk, 50 Cent, UGK, T.I., Dem Hoodstarz, The Pack, The Luniz, Richie Rich, Ludacris, and among countless others. For his last albums Too $hort collaborated with many Southern Rap artists, included Lil' Jon. That gave a new Dirty South and Crunk sound to his works.

Up All Nite Records

Too Short runs his own record label—Up All Nite Records. Artists on the label include The Pack, [Montgomery, James; Richards, Yasmine. [ You Hear It First: The Pack] . MTV: October 10, 2006.] Dolla Will, Boo Ski, and Li'l J & Boi Payton, FX.

Equipment from his recording studio was seized by Alameda County, California authorities in July 2008 after Too Short failed to pay $1.1 million after an automobile accident. Too Short was uninsured and legally drunk in the head-on collision that killed one man and seriously injured another. [San Francisco Chronicle article, July 11, 2008 [] ]

Too Short in film

Too Short played the role of Lew-Loc in the film "Menace II Society".

Too Short has also worked in the adult film industry, with the 2003 film "Get In Where You Fit In". [ [ get in where you fit in 1 - porn movie - - internet adult film database ] ]

Along with Snoop Dogg, Short was one of the only interviewees in "American Pimp" who were not current or previous full-time pimps, a testament to his contribution to the Pimp culture.


*1983: "Don't Stop Rappin'"
*1985: "Players"
*1987: "Raw, Uncut, and X-Rated"
*1988: "Born to Mack"
*1988: "Life Is...Too Short"
*1990: "Short Dog's in the House"
*1992: "Shorty the Pimp"
*1993: "Get in Where You Fit In"
*1993: ""
*1995: "Cocktails"
*1996: "Gettin' It"
*1999: "Can't Stay Away"
*2000: "You Nasty"
*2001: "Chase the Cat"
*2002: "What's My Favorite Word?"
*2003: "Married to the Game"
*2006: "Blow the Whistle"
*2006: "Mack of the Century...Greatest Hits"
*2007: "Get Off the Stage"


External links

* [ Too Short] site by record label Jive Records (requires Flash)



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