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My top three favorite old-school rappers. (Op-Ed)

Let’s face it, Hip-hop wouldn’t be what it is today if it weren’t for its pioneers. Hip-hop megastars of today, like Drake, Kendrick Lamar, and J. Cole (to name a few), wouldn’t be where or what they are if these pioneers didn’t influence them. My top three favorite old-school Hip-hop stars or pioneers are Jay-Z, Tupac, and Snoop Dogg.

There are so many things to love about Jay-Z, but I’ll start by saying that his talent is immeasurable. I had heard of Jay-Z, but I never really took the time to listen to him until middle school. I listened to his debut album Reasonable Doubt when I was 14, and I began listening to more and more of his projects from there. I loved how he rapped about his life and struggles. Jay-Z’s rhyming and flow is superb! His rapping is laid-back yet catchy. Aside from his rapping skills, the sampling used on his tracks took my breath away when I first heard it; I am most fond of this.  

Tupac, known professionally as 2Pac, is without a doubt the rapper I’m most fond of. There is nothing that I don’t like about him. His personality, wit, cockiness, and humor shine through his work. I first started listening to him when I was a freshman in high school. I am in love with how versatile he was. He talked about everything in his songs, from his life to politics to partying, you name it. The sampling, production, and instrumentals on his tracks are top-tier. I loved his rapping style as well it was aggressive and cocky.

I grew up listening to Snoop-Dogg as both the radio and my older brother played him a great deal. I feel Snoop-Dogg is one of my favorite, more commercialized, old-school rappers. Like Tupac, Snoop-Dogg is also very funny and witty. His production and sampling are also top-tier. Like Jay-Z, his rapping is laid-back yet hard-hitting and cocky at the same time.  I love how he still uses old-school sounds on his hit tracks today.


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