The top 10 reasons I can’t come out with a top 10 listing of the greatest Rappers of all time.

I see that every magazine, television music program, and Hip-Hop aficionado around this time comes out with the best 10 rappers of all time. There are the usual suspects in the top 5 but there are also people who have no business being on that list.

I am no genius. I have never ghost written. I have never attempted to flow for pay on any CD. I have never been in a rap battle or should never be allowed in one.

I am though a DJ first who has invested his entire life using God’s gift of hearing and interpreting music for distribution to consumers whether on the dance floor, on radio stations, or for performances on television.

Just as you wouldn’t take Mitt Romney’s advice on the Hip Hop CD of the year, there are other journalists who may purchase the music but lack the understanding of what makes a real poet.

As I mentioned 3 weeks ago I thought that the Nas CD, “Life is Good”, was the best Hip-Hop CD released of this year. There may be others coming out but, up until Wednesday, August 15 2012 at 12:41 pm, Nas had my vote.

I am continually asked who are the greatest Hip-Hopers of all time. Is it Lil Wayne? Is it Jay-Z? Is It Biggie? Is it Blowfly the Master of Class? (Gotta be real old school to remember that one.)

Although I have a list in my head the answer to that question is subjective. Everybody and everyone have their favorite top 10 rappers. Usually someone’s favorite rapper is not the best rapper.

I love Rick Ross. Completely love almost every song he has made. My wife hates Rick Ross. Many of you reading this column wish he would put his shirt back on, stop talking about food, and shave his beard. Not I. I think that he speaks to the streets and makes classic club bangers. THAT DOES NOT MAKE HIM THE BEST RAPPER IN THE WORLD. It does make him someone that is giving a big man like myself more reason to get into the gym and work out. (Man first it was the Fat Boys now I gotta take the Rick Ross jokes. CALGON TAKE ME AWAY….)

My daughter Alexis loves Lil Wayne. I can’t stand Lil Wayne. There are many new school rap consumers who believe that Lil Wayne is the greatest rapper of all time. Me, I think to myself, “What the ______ is Wayne wearing.(Shot out to Affion Crockett that song and video is hilarious. If you don’t believe me take a look. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vm5SuQZPOi4)

When I disagree with someone who calls himself a rapper it is only his or her rap style that I do not like. I think Lil Wayne’s business acumen is second to none. His relationship that he has created with the Rock Genre and Skateboard communities were desperately needed to continue growing the art form. His old lady grandma voice, Predator dreads, and other items including his jeggings are another story. (I’m just playing Wayne) Hmmmn…(I’m Just Playing) ☺

I won’t put this in order but I believe that if you were to create a list of people who would be placed on an elite list of Hip Hopers the criteria to make the list would get rid of all the muckedy mucks.

So instead of listing the greatest 10 rappers I want to list the 10 things that someone must have or done to make that list.

1) Have knowledge of self.
2) Have knowledge of your current events.
3) An outstanding vocabulary.
4) Have helped in grass roots community building within their neighborhood.
5) Does not have to curse in their music to make or prove a point.
6) Is not afraid to speak their mind on politics or issues within their surroundings.
7) Spiritual
8) Courteous
9) Nurturing
10) Observant

Does your favorite rapper have all 10? Did any list you have ever seen anywhere of the top 10 rappers of all time include rappers that have these types of qualities?

I know I said I wasn’t going to list my favorite rappers but to show you that they fall under those qualities here are a few.

Common, Chuck D, Rakim, Big Daddy Kane, MC Lyte, Ice Cube, Talib Kweli, Yasin Bey, Phonte, Big Pooh, Nas, Emenim, Kanye West, Jay-Z, Christopher Wallace, KRS-ONE, Black Thought, Grand Puba, Q-Tip, Phife Dawg, Posdnuos, Trugoy, Queen Latifah, Monie Love, Guru, Prince Paul, Busta Rhymes, DJ QUIK, T3, LL COOL J, 2PAC, RZA, Ghostface, Method Man, RedMan, Mr Cheeks, Pete Rock, Raekwon, Rasheed Hadee, T.I., Duddley Perkins and Madlib.

Now I think I have given you some Hip Hoppers to follow if you are not already familiar with them.

Until next week, keep it Moving!

CHICAGO TRIBUNE VIDEO

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