posted on Jan, 27 2017 @ 10:58 PM
I can't really make a Top 5 list as there are probably 20 guys that could legitimately claim a spot IMHO. However, I do have an opinion on three that
will always be on my Top 5 and this is why:
1) Rakim. Always will be number one and there is a reason he is the God MC. I grew up in 70s/80s and got to listen to his stuff when it was
actually out on the streets. As the video mentioned, up until he came out, the rhyming was fairly straight forward. I will never forget the first
time I heard him. He literally broke more rewind buttons on tape decks than any artist. I just didn't know someone could rhyme like he did. He was
like the first MC that really made you stop and analyze every freaking word and syllable for punchlines, alternative meanings, etc. He completely
changed hip hop. He was like the first basketball player to dunk a ball. The first guy to run a sub 10 sec 100 meter dash. The first car to hit 200.
He is your favorite rapper's favorite rapper. He has influenced so many great MCs that I just don't see how he can be anything but number 1.
Finally, he has probably the most famous verse in hip hop - "7 MCs"
2) Jay-Z. He is just simply the most versatile MC to grace the game imho. He is like a decathlete. He may not necessarily the best at one thing,
but he is damn good at all of it.
3) Outkast. I grew up in East Point, GA and went to school with their producer (Rico Wade). They were the first southern hip hop group to really
come out with lyrics. Up until then, southern hip hop was closer to the Miami bass sound. They came out capturing life in Atlanta the way Nas did
with life in NY. While I love Big Boi (he can pack like 100 words into a bar), Andre 3000 really captures my mind.
To this day, the only hip hop verse that actually brings tears to my eyes is Andre's verse on Goodie Mob's "Thought Process". His verse talks about
growing up in Atlanta and it just beautifully captures my childhood. He says:
"Nobody would die in cops and robbers when we used to play, right?
Huh, the only thing we feared was Williams, Wayne"
The line is simple but so powerful for anyone who grew up in Atlanta in the mid 80s. The first line talks about how simple life was that people
weren't getting senselessly killed. But then he follows it up with the reference to Wayne Williams. Wayne Williams was a child serial killer. He
killed like 30 young black kids. I vividly recall the fear in Atlanta during that time. A lot of the kids killed were my age and some were no more
than 1 person removed from me. I used to play at my best friend's grandmother's house who lived around the corner from Wayne Williams.
After these three, I'd try to pack in:
LL Cool J
The list goes on and on. So many greats, so little space.