[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 Kuniva unloaded his picks, rap newcomer Kid Named Breezy busts out his fave five.]
Fresh Prince. Fresh Prince is undeniable. At his time, when he was making that music he was making, people were trying to downgrade him because of the positive messages that he was trying to bring to music. Of course this was also the time when gangster rap was coming up. I think not just musically, that show “Fresh Prince of Bel-Air” was crazy for television. To be in my Top 5, you have to be there for more than just music. You have to be there as a person and trying to impact people other than in the music culture.
A Tribe Called Quest. Once again, I think they are one of the greatest hip-hop groups of all time. Stemming from the way they came out with the Native Tongues-type style. Nobody really knew what they were about. They were like the hippies of the late 80’s and early 90’s. I don’t know, I just love the Tribe because they brought something different to music. I can do nothing but respect those guys.
Kanye West. I kind of model what I want to do based on Kanye. I think he’s so innovative. He’s definitely in the Top 5.
Kendrick Lamar. I think Kendrick is just a genius. I really think music needed somebody like him. I’ve been following him for a while now. Since then, his message is just amazing. He can bring his intellectual mind to the music. I kind of compare him to a young Lupe Fiasco but I think he might have more potential than Lupe. I think it’s great for what he’s doing.
J. Cole. I love J. Cole, I love who he is but I think he definitely needs to come strong with his next album if he wants to stay in my Top 5. I love Cole’s music and I hope he keeps going.