Archive for November, 2009




"Mmmmm, mmmm, good."



I pride myself on being an individual as I go through life, foregoing trends, dodging the “norm”, and I try to avoid being what society says I am, or should be. My personal style, the way I speak, and even some of the music I listen to are all atypical of the demographic I fall into. This fact has been the reason for the position I took on a heated debate that was popular in the hip hop culture a few years back. It seemed to me that everybody and their mothers were busy stiff-arming, throwing elbows and gouging eyes out to get a spot on the ever so crowded Jay-Z bandwagon. Me, not so much. I was pumping my fist hard for my boy Esco. From Illmatic, to Nastradamus, to Untitled, I was on my own wagon with elbow room for days. Then the beef started. “Takeover” and “Ether” were the most popular dis tracks in the aforementioned feud between Nas and Jay-Z back in the ealry parts of the decade, and although only one verse in Takeover” was directed at Nas, it was undoubtedly impressive. Hov bringing to the light Nas’s subpar releases since Illmatic put him on the map, as well as pointing out Mr. Jones’s attempt at intellectual rhymes. On “Ether”, Nas retorted, putting on blast the fact that S. Carter made a habit of using Biggie’s lines and also recycled an album name that had previously been pressed up. He also turned the tables on Jay-Z’s disdain for Queens rappers evidencing that Rockafella Records is run by a Queens native in the form of one Russell Simmons. There is no doubt in my mind that Ether decided the fate of Jay-Z in this epic hip-hop, heavyweight battle, giving the unanimous decision to the “QB true G”.

Throughout the entire beef and even through the “best rapper alive” debates, I stuck with my favorite, Nas. I never relented and always had a reason why I think Mr. Jones was “the best”, as evidenced in this previous post. Now, I don’t take back anything I said about Nas, and the assertions I put forth will always stand, but I must enjoy this big plate of crow sitting in front of me and state that Jay-Z is, indeed, the……..dare I say it?  The Best Rapper Alive!!! I came to this realization this morning as I listened to the Black Album while cleaning my place up. Every single track had me nodding my head and “rapping” along with the lyrics, as weird as that may sound. At one point, I had to stop and say, “Daaammmnnnn, that boy good.” I can now honestly admit that none of Jay’s albums were disappointments. My all-time favorite of course was the first, Reasonable Doubt. 22 Two’s is probably one of the most creative songs I’ve ever heard. Brooklyn’s Finest definitely stands up to the name of the track with the greatest and the third greatest rapper from the East Coast displaying their skills on wax. Nas still holds the spot as my favorite rapper of all-time, but he now comes in an extremely close second on my “Best Rapper Alive list.”