by DeMalo Harbour
Editor’s Note: For the last several weeks, DeMalo Harbour, a student at Bryant & Stratton College who is graduating in May, was engaged in an internship at the Milwaukee Community Journal, learning about journalism and a little bit about the history of Black Milwaukee, meeting two of the community’s elder’s and participating in a couple of interviews reporters did with a writer and educator. Below is a story we asked him to write on who, he believes, are the top five rappers in Hip-Hop–past and present. Below is his list, accompanied by his reasons why.
2Pac: He’s the best in the world to me. The music he dropped when he was alive were true stories of his life.
The movies he made: Juice, Gang Related, and Poetic Justice, were three of the best urban movies of that time. His music style was the best. You will never hear that type of style again.
Jay-Z: Now he is a very good rapper and one of the best out there to me. He is the only rapper—to this day that I know of—who really was a true hustler out there in New York. At age 41, he’s still one of the best rappers in the game.
Biggie Smalls: Now he’s a legend to those who are his fans. But I’ve never really been a fan of his music, so I don’t have much to say about him. He made Jay-Z, who was his protégé’. Though he had some of the dopiest music out there, he’s not better then Jay-Z. I just really didn’t get into him like my cousins did. I was more of a 2Pac fan.
Eminem: Now to me, he is the best
rapper on the planet. I know I said 2Pac was. But since he died, I have to give it to Eminem. This brother’s style right here—how he puts his music together—is so amazing. His lyrics and style of delivery hit everybody hard because of what he was saying. He’s like 2Pac because he tells a true story about him and his mother doing drugs, how much he loves and adores his daughter, and his love/hate relationship with his ex-wife Kim. To date, all six CDs have gone platinum. He’s only been in the business for over 10 years. He sold millions off of it. So what more can you say about a boy that came from nothing to the top like that and his music is too dope? So that’s why to me he is the best of the best cause if he was a Black man, 2Pac would be second on my list.
DMX: This dude right here; I feel him so hard on his music because— again—you can’t help but think of 2pac; even the sound of his voice. His style; how he
makes his words; is so amazing, so full of emotion. He is the only man in the game (well when he was in the game) who will cry on stage in front of thousands of fans and let them know how he feels about his music. He touches a lot of people with his music. So to me, that’s why he’s so raw (so good) at his game.
Lil Wayne: Hmm! Though I have him at number five (due to his success in the business due to his record sales), this man has no style to me! His style isn’t up to scale. It sounds like some old rap from the 80’s. He looks like a mess with all those tattoos on his body. But he’s a fake. He makes you think he’s a real gang member, but he’s not. One reason he’s not a gang member is he kissed a man in the mouth. Now that’s gay to me. NO GANG MEMBER DO THAT! I just don’t have anything good to say about this man or his music at all.