And the top 4 Hottest MCs in the Game (according to MTV) have been named. Up top is #4 in Kanye West.
Kanye West is a force larger than hip-hop. He’s turned himself into a global megastar, producing and collaborating with the biggest names in the game, influencing art and fashion, discovering and growing new talent, and consistently pushing musical boundaries with his own albums such as 808s & Heartbreak.
Hit the jump to see who got snubbed and who took the top spot…
Drake proclaims himself to be “the one, twice over/ The new 11.” He’s definitely one of kind. We haven’t seen a single mixtape as universally triumphant as his So Far Gone.
We’ve seen guys turn the street-music hustle into instant ‘hood-icon status and get record deals before, like Young Jeezy (who actually got two deals, one with the group Boyz N Da Hood as well as a solo deal), the Diplomats and of course 50 Cent and G-Unit.
This kid Drake, however, is a different type of beast. Technology allowed his tape to spread wider and faster than CDs, and So Far Gone’s word-of-mouth buzz made it a must-have download. He toured the country on the strength of the mixtape while songs from SFG flew from underground to radio rotation. His collaboration with Trey Songz, “Successful,” hit the Top 20 of the Billboard Hot 100 singles chart, while “Best I Ever Had” has the heaviest rotation on urban radio this year, according to Mediabase.
Then, after circulating for seven months for free, So Far Gone was revamped and re-released through a major label — and sold nearly 70,000 units in its first week of release last month.
2007’s Hottest MC in the Game, Lil Wayne, has been in the top three of the Hottest MCs list three years running on account of his consistently powerful skills on the mic and perennially enormous impact.
Even without an album release in 2009, Weezy’s rep and influence continued to grow, owing to his status as rap’s most active and lucrative touring act, the rise of his Young Money crew of newcomers, and his armor-piercing punchlines on guest appearances.
Just one example of his lyrical marksmanship can be found in Jadakiss’ “Death Wish”: “I’m from the mecca of the reckless/ With a record-breaking debt list/ The wreckers and neglectors think the election won’t affect us,” Wayne raps about his hometown of New Orleans. “I’m knockin’ n—as down this year, I’m on my timber sh–/ Big lion growl at you n—as/ On that Simba sh–.”
Over the past year, the big lion tore up the road for nearly 80 dates on his “I Am Music” and “Young Money Presents: America’s Most Wanted Music Festival” tours, which banked slightly over $42 million — a record for a hip-hop act, according to Pollstar. Wayne’s show was must-see as he exploded onstage with spectacles such as a live band whose members were suspended in the air, sexy dancers, his guitar (heh heh!) and his most important weapon, his charisma. With his swinging dreads, tattooed body and insurgent attitude, Weezy’s stage command was practically a religious experience for fans as he infused rock, pop and all his hip-hop blockbusters into his live set.
He’s had the most acclaimed career in rap history. But even with all that lore, all that respect, all that prestige and all that money, Jay-Z continues to add luster to his legacy with time-transcending music, multiple successful business ventures and his dominant influence over the game.
MTV News’ Greatest MC of All Time is 2009’s Hottest MC in the Game. Hov isn’t just an elite MC that pushes the culture, the Brooklyn native is the standard-bearer, the leader, a source of inspiration and aspirations — Hov’s the guy we all look to see how far hip-hop can go. And what a ride Shawn Carter has taken us on this year, from Presidential inaugural balls back his Brooklyn ‘hood (where he was accompanied by Oprah Winfrey) ,and he even found time to take us to the world’s most famous arena — Madison Square Garden — for a charity concert featuring historic gathering of musical guests. He also surpassed Elvis Presley to become the solo act with the most #1 albums in Billboard history with 11.
Being authentic with your raps and having credibility is as precious as legal tender in hip-hop. Jay is money in the bank. Lyrically he says what no other truth-speaking MC can; his experiences are that great and unique. No wonder his swagga is never at less than level 10.
“Meanwhile, I had Oprah chillin’ in the projects,” he raps on “On to the Next One,” from his highly touted latest LP, Blueprint 3.”Had her out in Bed-Stuy, chillin’ on the steps/ Drinkin’ quarter waters, gotta be the best/ MJ [Michael Jackson] at Summer Jam, Obama on the text/ Y’all should be afraid of what I’m gon’ do next.”
On “Already Home,” he separates himself from the pack again. “I’m in the Hall [of fame] already, on the wall already/ I’m a work of art, I’m a Warhol already/ On another level, on another plane already/ H-O-V, I got my own lane already/ I done cooked up the rock already/ So why the f— can’t ya’ll get hot already/ Put your name in the pot already, n—as compare me to Biggie and Pac already.”
Blueprint 3 is another Hov tour de force — and it destroys the myth that there’s an age limit on being a dope MC. At 39 years old, Jay is arguably still better than anybody on the mic today, rhyming with precision and grace. He throws buzzsaws right from the gate on the intro “What We Talking About,” where he raps about what he deems to be nonsense, like dwelling on rap beef.
So there you have it.
Jay was pretty much a given for #1 but I thought Drake would be above Lil Wayne. Same goes for Kanye. But ummm… where’s Eminem?