Though you didn’t see him in Sunday’s Super Bowl LVI Halftime Show among hip-hop royalty Dr. DreSnoop Dogg, and EminemToo $hort has earned a place as one of the greats. Nearly 40 years into a prolific career that itself charts the evolution of West Coast hip-hop, the rapper born Todd Anthony Shaw is as influential as any of the rappers seen at SoFi Stadium. Too $hort proved this himself with a recent career-spanning Tiny Desk (Home) Concert from his BoomBox Studios in Downtown Los Angeles.

“How many artists you know that got relevant records in five decades,” Too $hort asked to open the session following a performance of 1990’s “The Ghetto”.

The rapper answers his own question by rattling off vintage tracks like 1988’s “Life Is…Too $hort” and the influential “Gettin’ It” from 1996. Too $hort then makes a ten-year jump to “Blow The Whistle”, the gruff guitar-driven track indicative of the stylistic change affecting hip-hop in the mid-2000s. Jumping ahead once again to 2017, Too $hort performs his piece of the feature-heavy “Ain’t My Girlfriend”, which hosted Jeremih, French Montana, and Joyner Lucas on the track. Even some of his raunchier lyrics achieve a kind of elegance courtesy of backup vocalist Maurice Smith.

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Too $hort then brought things to the future of hip-hop with his impending single “Big Sexy Thang”, out on Friday. An homage to Hot Chocolates‘ 1975 hit “You Sexy Thing”, Too $hort looks ahead by looking back at some of the classic R&B rhythms that first gave birth to hip-hop. Finally, the Tiny Desk (Home) Concert concludes with $hort’s contribution to the 2021 Mount Westmore collaboration “Big Subwoofer” with Snoop Dogg and Ice Cube.

Watch Too $hort’s Tiny Desk (Home) Concert via the player below. The performance came as part of NPR Music‘s celebration of Black History Month. Bob Boilen‘s flagship concert series will also see sets from Patti Labelle (2/18) and Pastor Shirley Caesar (2/25) to close out February.

Too $hort – Tiny Desk (Home) Concert