Top 5 Dead Or Alive: "[Xzibit] Is One Of Those Artists You Don't Wanna See Give Up Hip-Hop"
Friday, Dec 16, 2011 12:00AM
[Each week, SOHH asks two entertainment personalities to name their Top 5 rappers of all-time. To make things tricky, we've created a "Hall of Fame" of emcees (see right) who are universally respected and therefore may not be mentioned. After hip-hop photographer Dirty Souf Yankee flashed her faves, paparazzo Garry "Prophecy" Sun unloads his top five picks]
Andre 3000. [I wanted to mention] OutKast in general but with the lyricism, I really favored Andre more. He seemed more like a logical rapper than Big Boi. Big Boi was more like the pimp and he had the style and everything going on, but Andre had a logical style and flow.
Cee-Lo Green. Again, at the time when ATLiens was out, it was that whole 1996 period. Cee-Lo Green's lyricism really got to me. He had that deep soul and he also sang harmonies. The Soul Food album started out with "Free" and that intro is one of the sickest intros to any album. Ever. To see Cee-Lo doing his thing now, he's the man. He is, the, man.
T.I. T.I. is my third pick because people fail to recognize that although he's street and he has that real catchy style, more than anything, he's an incredible lyricist. He's a true lyricist that managed to be completely street. He's a street author but very catchy. He's got the South flavor but he has songs like "Whatever You Like." T.I. is one of those people that's not commercial. It just so happens that his style was so catchy that it appeared to be commercial. In the end, he's a real lyricist.
Ludacris. He's somebody who has really smashed the commercial mode. Yes, he's totally commercial and he's the dude rapping with Justin Bieber, but he's always been a dude that's always been completely catchy and yet he's super lyrical. People don't realize it because his music is categorized as completely catchy. People don't recognize his lyricism and thought process.
Xzibit. I would have to say him because whether or not you want to say he hasn't made the kind of money that other artists have made, he's done a lot of things. First off, I think Xzibit is one of those people that would be a phenomenal actor. You know his soul, spirit and heart is there. He's one of those artists that you don't want to ever see give up hip-hop. If you're a true hip-hop lyricist, you have a very powerful soul and he's definitely one of those people that embodies it.