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July Madness...no really, this is madness
July 15, 2008 8:57 PM   Subscribe

Best Rapper Alive? No Krs-1, no Rakim, but Scarface is there. No MF Doom, no Pharoahe Monche, but Lil Mama is there. [via] Voting starts July 21st.
posted by cashman (72 comments total)

 
Kool Moe Dee's already got that list covered.

Kool Moe Dee comes in at number 3, which I find hard to refute.
posted by Kattullus at 9:08 PM on July 15, 2008


Wow, hold on bro, what you say about my Rakim?
posted by ericb at 9:10 PM on July 15, 2008 [1 favorite]


Hip hop is dead, and has been dead for about a decade. Film at 11.
posted by CommonSense at 9:10 PM on July 15, 2008


No Mike D, no votey.
posted by tristeza at 9:12 PM on July 15, 2008


No KRS-1? Sounds good to me.
posted by wfrgms at 9:16 PM on July 15, 2008


Ghostface, no wait... Doom, no wait Kool Keith Circa 89, no wait Kool Keith when he said "Urinate all up in your head area" on doperskiller, no wait Schoolly D around Signifying Rapper, no wait Chuck D from Public Enemy, yeah he's a friend of me. No wait, Nas on Illmatic. No wait, Biggie on Party and Bullshit (ya heard?) No wait, Eazy E, no wait Killer Mike on ADIDAS or That's Life, no wait Rakim in general... No wait did you hear the legally blind governor of New York pardoned Slick Rick? No wait, uh Tribe Called Quest collectively... No wait, how about Positive K when he said "Yeah I get kinky, put some Barbeque sauce on the tip of my pinky?" Buckshot Shorty in his prime? Dude, you linked to a pdf, but I'll stay and have an argument. Oh, also fuck that, me, I'm THE GREATEST MC IN THE WORLD! Weezy needs some work, but I have to say he seems to be having some fun.

Shit, uh, Chubb Rock? Don't Curse is a fresh song.
posted by Divine_Wino at 9:16 PM on July 15, 2008


What happened to the eighties?
posted by not_on_display at 9:22 PM on July 15, 2008


Why are they doing brackets and not a straight poll? Oh right, to create dramatic tension and increase page views, but it's actually a pretty stupid way to do a ranking.
posted by delmoi at 9:23 PM on July 15, 2008


These Vibe people are morons.
posted by Burhanistan at 9:25 PM on July 15, 2008


Ghostface Killah vs. Raekwon in the first round? Dude, that's low.
posted by DaDaDaDave at 9:26 PM on July 15, 2008


Snoop a 2? Please.
posted by shadow vector at 9:27 PM on July 15, 2008


That's easy, it's bo fo sho.
posted by gregv at 9:31 PM on July 15, 2008


Mr. Lawnge, Black Sheep, Dres, Black Sheep, slam nooooow!
posted by Divine_Wino at 9:32 PM on July 15, 2008


Why do you choose to mimic these wack MC's? Why do you choose to listen to R&B? Why do you choose to believe something is phat just because it's played on the radio twenty times a day?
posted by Divine_Wino at 9:36 PM on July 15, 2008


Who Killed Biggie Smalls? If we don't get them they gonna get us all, I'm down for running up on them crackers in their city hall.
posted by Divine_Wino at 9:40 PM on July 15, 2008


I don't think it's fair that L'il Boosie and Webbie are in the same bracket. I mean, I live down the way from both of these guys, and... well... it's unfair that they are knocking out at least one of the Baton Rougeans this fast? And, next? One of us goes up against L'il Wayne, who'll solidly win it.

Pimp C bracket... for the west end of the Dirty South.
posted by The Giant Squid at 9:40 PM on July 15, 2008


And, no, KRS and Rakim don't make relevant work, which is why they are (properly) excluded from this competition.
posted by The Giant Squid at 9:41 PM on July 15, 2008


I don't get rap.
posted by zardoz at 9:43 PM on July 15, 2008


zardoz: It helps to have come up in it. I mean, Master P's "Ice Cream Man" was played at my high school prom (as was Partners-N-Crime's "Pump the Party"). Also, our class motto was: "You Betta Ask Somebody".

Not sure what that meant, but ... whatever.
posted by The Giant Squid at 9:46 PM on July 15, 2008


It's gonna be Webbie v. Soulja Boy.
posted by NoMich at 9:49 PM on July 15, 2008


My words is diamonds dug out of mind, spit 'em, polish, look how they shine, glitter, glisten, gloss, floss, I catch a beat runnin' like Randy Moss.
posted by Divine_Wino at 9:50 PM on July 15, 2008


Anybody seen that Jigga Juice video?
posted by The Giant Squid at 9:52 PM on July 15, 2008


Ghostface Killah vs. Raekwon in the first round? Dude, that's low.

Agreed. They also put Mos Def vs. Talib Kweli in the first round, which is an equally terrible thing to do.
posted by threetoed at 9:56 PM on July 15, 2008


Snoop's best song was his first one, Deep Cover. Skinny teenage menace.
posted by Divine_Wino at 9:56 PM on July 15, 2008


Too much knocking comparable artists out in early rounds. I call foul.
posted by The Giant Squid at 9:58 PM on July 15, 2008


No Krs-1

Luckily KRS-One already has this topic covered:

All these rappers, swear they the best
I know whatchu thinkin about, "Where's KRS?"
Eighty percent of these rappers fake they shit
The other twenty percent they goin upstate and shit
There's no way out except knowledge and wisdom
I got it so I spit 'em you ain't got it you gotta get 'em
posted by burnmp3s at 10:00 PM on July 15, 2008


And now I'll go to bed, but does anyone remember when hip-hop was funny and charming and sweet? Yes indeedy, I wrote graffiti, on the bus! Bonus track: You was beatboxin' for Lou Rawls, in some bright red boxer drawls!
posted by Divine_Wino at 10:03 PM on July 15, 2008


Wasn't KRS the one who said that every time a new rapper comes out, he writes a diss verse, just so he'll have it if he needs it?
posted by The Giant Squid at 10:03 PM on July 15, 2008


Divine_Wino: But, Outkast and the Pharcyde are basically white people rap. Like the Beastie Boys, but less nasal.
posted by The Giant Squid at 10:04 PM on July 15, 2008 [1 favorite]


I have Too $hort barely edging out Warren G in the championship.
posted by clearly at 10:15 PM on July 15, 2008


Divine_Wino: But, Outkast and the Pharcyde are basically white people rap. Like the Beastie Boys, but less nasal.

That's certainly an opinion.
posted by Divine_Wino at 10:27 PM on July 15, 2008


Snoop's best song was his first one, Deep Cover.

Haha, I always claimed he got worse as he matured. Maybe it was just because he didn't have the ever present hit-maker Dre backing him up.

But, Outkast and the Pharcyde are basically white people rap. Like the Beastie Boys, but less nasal.

Whoaaaaa! Outkast?! I could easily see someone saying that about Pharcyde (well, less nasal though?) But as far as Outkast is concerned, I think you would be hard pressed to back that claim up.

Besides, both of those groups ushered in whole new styles into the music.
posted by P.o.B. at 10:59 PM on July 15, 2008


KRS and Rakim don't have to be making relevant work right now to be the greatest rapper alive. Their work still stands.

For me, it's Chuck D, Ice Cube, and the GZA.

It'll probably Soulja Boy FTW, though.
posted by ignignokt at 11:08 PM on July 15, 2008 [1 favorite]


I don't get rap.

...That's okay, neither do the people at Vibe.
posted by joe defroster at 1:48 AM on July 16, 2008 [4 favorites]


Why are they doing brackets and not a straight poll? Oh right, to create dramatic tension and increase page views, but it's actually a pretty stupid way to do a ranking.

I'd go so far as to say that brackets is a way to not rank anything except the winner. In theory the winner should come out on top no matter in which initial bracket they are placed, but the "true" #2 could get knocked out in the first round. Oh, of course you can say that the losing finalist is in the top half+1, but that's hardly useful.
posted by bjrn at 2:11 AM on July 16, 2008


white people rap

Talk about rap and the rednecks aren't the only racists that come out to play.

(I didn't see Mike Skinner, Maxi Jazz, Peaches, Queen Latifah, or Michael Franti, but I may just be going blind in my old age. And hey, I guess my opinion doesn't count, being white and all...)
posted by rodgerd at 2:30 AM on July 16, 2008


PDF warning please. For my money, Kool Keith is the best MC ever.
posted by autodidact at 5:48 AM on July 16, 2008


Besides, both of those groups ushered in whole new styles into the music.

I think the point of the contest is to determine best rapper 'alive', which has the subtext: who's making albums right now. Pharcyde haven't done anything relevant since 1995 (or 2000, if you're stretching it).

And both members of (the former) Outkast are on there, in case nobody actually read the damned thing.
posted by The Giant Squid at 6:12 AM on July 16, 2008


I don't see Devastatin' Dave the Turntable Slave on there anywhere...
posted by sciurus at 6:15 AM on July 16, 2008


(I didn't see Mike Skinner, Maxi Jazz, Peaches, Queen Latifah, or Michael Franti, but I may just be going blind in my old age. And hey, I guess my opinion doesn't count, being white and all...)

The Streets, Peaches, and Faithless are all either indie-rock or indie-techo outfits, and few hip-hop fans would call them rap music. As for Queen Latifah, in case you haven't been paying attention, she's been making easy listening albums, she hasn't made a rap album since 1998!

I can't speak for Michael Franti, but I suspect he's excluded for the same reason that Ozomatli is. He's a singer in a funk band who sorta raps.... Anthony Kiedis fits the same criteria, and nobody would call him a rapper.
posted by The Giant Squid at 6:20 AM on July 16, 2008


deborah harry or madonna
posted by dprs75 at 6:53 AM on July 16, 2008


I didn't like the contest so I made my own, you silly squid.
posted by Divine_Wino at 7:15 AM on July 16, 2008


Escher, FTW.
posted by googly at 7:33 AM on July 16, 2008


Divine_Wino: Tacos are indeed delicious.
posted by The Giant Squid at 8:02 AM on July 16, 2008


Yeah man, especially shrimp tacos. Chicken tacos are kinda like whiteboy tacos though, very nasal.
posted by Divine_Wino at 8:12 AM on July 16, 2008 [2 favorites]


Wait... I'm beginning to get the sneaking suspicion that Vibe Magazine made this "tournament" up JUST TO GET US TO BUY STUFF!!

*** turns monitor off quickly ***
posted by not_on_display at 8:12 AM on July 16, 2008


It's Ra. Lil Mama on there is just a disgrace.

Sorry about not putting the pdf warning on there.
posted by cashman at 8:27 AM on July 16, 2008


This is just a shameless ripoff of my 1996 Greatest Gimmick Crew of ALL TIME Tournament.

The Riveting Final Four:

Onyx over Fu Shnickens in the East Regional Final.

Das EfX over the cinderella 12-seed Insane Clown Posse in the West

Onyx FTW!
posted by kosem at 8:43 AM on July 16, 2008


just change to best rapper alive to best popular relevant rapper and the list is fine.

btw, Shit, uh, Chubb Rock? Don't Curse is a fresh song

you mean heavy d, and heavy d has more than 5 really good singles. Chubb Rock too for that matter.


Das Efx is a really good group and put out like 5 singles that people still play. FuShnickens too altough they did use a lot of that diggety diggety stuff.

Rakim- made one really good album, one good album, couple of singles.
KRS- Please make records not nonsense.
Kool Moe Dee- doesn't really get the respect he should for his work with the treacherous three. They changed a lot of the way that people rapped. .
posted by LouieLoco at 9:48 AM on July 16, 2008


Fail, kosem.
posted by cashman at 9:49 AM on July 16, 2008


You are correct, Heady D. I mixed up my big fat rappers.
posted by Divine_Wino at 10:52 AM on July 16, 2008


See, cashman, the thing about that is that Gravediggaz was actually pretty good--a sort of horrorcore "Blind Faith". But Onyx! The auteurs of the sublime "Blac Vagina Finda". As you surely must recognize, high ignorance and high gimmickry are not often paired so harmoniously.
posted by kosem at 11:18 AM on July 16, 2008


(I didn't see Mike Skinner, Maxi Jazz, Peaches, Queen Latifah, or Michael Franti, but I may just be going blind in my old age. And hey, I guess my opinion doesn't count, being white and all...)

Your opinion doesn't matter because your GOAT list has freaking Peaches on it.
posted by box at 11:38 AM on July 16, 2008


'Yeah, we gon' go the back route and take our gats out and throw our masks on. We ain't leavin' til everyone's dead and all the cash gone.'
posted by box at 11:42 AM on July 16, 2008


Heady D, wow. Heady.
posted by Divine_Wino at 11:43 AM on July 16, 2008


'People fled as I put a dread's head to bed. That means dead, in other words deceased. Face got erased, bullets got released.'
posted by box at 11:46 AM on July 16, 2008


'But you see, in this game of life I'm not trying to be the MVP, 'cause the enemy's the clock and the referee.'
posted by box at 11:48 AM on July 16, 2008


'My mother always told me to reach for the stars. Now I got the first black-owned business on Mars.'
posted by box at 11:53 AM on July 16, 2008


And yeah, these brackets are a joke. (Missed the 'alive' part first-time around, rest in peace Big L.)
posted by box at 11:55 AM on July 16, 2008


'Drop science and build with math, and the deaf dumb and blind will feel the wrath of Kane.'

Man, we could keep going all day.
posted by box at 12:07 PM on July 16, 2008


I'd like to take this opportunity to say that Tupac was awful. I mean, not as awful as Lil' Wayne or Diddy, but still, just terrible.
posted by electroboy at 12:17 PM on July 16, 2008


Even if you change it to 'best popular relevant rapper,' the list could still stand to have more Wu-Tangers, Re-Up Gang and Dipset emcees. Sorry, Flo Rida, but GZA is a better rapper than you are. Hell, JR Writer's a better rapper than you are.

And if you're willing to accept that Saul Williams is both popular and a rapper, he totally belongs on the list.
posted by box at 12:17 PM on July 16, 2008


in case nobody actually read the damned thing.

I don't need to read it to know it's aboslutely ridiculous. Every person in here is going to have a different opinion based upon different values on who is the best around. It really is just a clever little ruse to get people to come to their webpage.

Besides I like who I like. Why should I give a damn who other people think is "The bestest of the best!!!"
posted by P.o.B. at 12:21 PM on July 16, 2008



I'd like to take this opportunity to say that Tupac was awful. I mean, not as awful as Lil' Wayne or Diddy, but still, just terrible.

Strangely, Tupac (and B.I.G., and, hell, Lil Wayne, for that matter) doesn't shine as much on his commercial tracks (California Love, anyone?) as on some of the lesser known cuts on his albums. I still think 'I ain't mad at ya' is a brilliant tune, and 'Hit 'em up' is easily one of the most venomous diss tracks in existence.
posted by The Giant Squid at 12:27 PM on July 16, 2008



Even if you change it to 'best popular relevant rapper,' the list could still stand to have more Wu-Tangers, Re-Up Gang and Dipset emcees. Sorry, Flo Rida, but GZA is a better rapper than you are. Hell, JR Writer's a better rapper than you are.


Mostly agree, but, again, of the Wu, only Method Man, Ghostface, and Raekwon are still making albums (Ghostface is almost Kool Keith-prolific these days). GZA's last solo album was in 2002, although his new one is supposed to drop this year.
posted by The Giant Squid at 12:32 PM on July 16, 2008


Lil Wayne is garbage.
posted by cashman at 1:05 PM on July 16, 2008


I wouldn't say he's garbage as much as I'd say that he's desperately, desperately overrated (coming up as a backpacker, or a battle cat, instead of as one of the Hot Boyz, might've produced some more realistic assessments) , and I suspect that it's for reasons related to the aspirational qualities of both rap music and rap audiences. Wayne is conspicuous consumption in human form. More importantly, no matter how much he talks, people are eager to listen. What modern hip-hop fan wouldn't want to be that guy?
posted by box at 2:30 PM on July 16, 2008


This post is stupid.
posted by dead_ at 2:45 PM on July 16, 2008 [1 favorite]


He was fine at playing the Hot Boys' retarded little brother, not so much as a marquee act.
posted by electroboy at 3:00 PM on July 16, 2008 [1 favorite]


When I think of him as a former child star, I'm a little more understanding.
posted by box at 3:32 PM on July 16, 2008


This is an easy one.
posted by breakfast_yeti at 6:47 PM on July 16, 2008


Cashman is upset because his lipgloss aint poppin'.
posted by NikitaNikita at 8:49 PM on July 16, 2008


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