Hip-hop icon Gregory ‘Shock G’ Jacobs dies at 57

View Original Notice ? Hip-hop icon Gregory ‘Shock G’ Jacobs dies at 57

Gregory Jacobs, who co-founded and fronted Digital Underground, helped foster Tupac Shakur’s music career and served as a lodestar for creativity within hip-hop and beyond, has died. He was 57.


Greg “Shock G” Jacobs, singer for the Digital Underground, performs The Humpty Dance during a halftime appearance in the Detroit Pistons’ 98-93 victory over the Denver Nuggets in an NBA basketball game in Denver on Monday, Feb. 25, 2008. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski) 

Jacobs was known by many as Shock G, but perhaps more so by his “Humpty Hump” alter ego, whose prosthetic nose, stylish clothes and side-splitting humorous lyrics made Digital Underground platinum-sellers and stadium-fillers for several years in the late 1980s and early 1990s.

In a social media post Thursday, band co-founder Jimi C. Dright, Jr., who performed as Chopmaster J, broke the news to fans and praised Jacobs’ legacy.

“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 the dream became a reality and the reality became a nightmare for some,” he wrote.

“And now he’s awaken from the fame long live shock G Aka Humpty Hump and Rest In Peace my Brotha Greg Jacobs!!!”

Jacobs’ keen eye for talent extended well beyond Tupac’s early days as a dancer and roadie for the band during its time on the charts.

According to an article by this news organization, musician and entrepreneur Tyranny Allen talked about his time running into Jacobs at the then-Serenader bar near Lake Merritt, turning a freestyle performance into a songwriting and performing stint.

As recently as November 2019, Digital Underground joined a 40th-anniversary party for Bay Area radio station KBLX alongside multiple music legends including MC Hammer, En Vogue, Luniz and Tony! Toni! Tone!

On Thursday, music figures from the Bay Area and beyond paid their respects to multiple levels of Jacobs’ legacy.

Contact George Kelly at 408-859-5180.

View Original Notice ? Hip-hop icon Gregory ‘Shock G’ Jacobs dies at 57