In a text conservation today with a friend and she asked my opinion on the greatest rap lyrics of all of time.  I spent my entire youth listening to this dreck and I am certainly of the opinion that this wasteland offers some true gems.  So while I cannot say for certain which set of lines are the best, I most assuredly have my own personal top ten.  They are as follows (in no particular order, scribbled here off the top of my head as memory serves):

  1. The Notorious B.I.G., “Everyday Struggle” – “I had the master plan, I’m in the caravan on my way to Maryland with my man Two-Tecs to takeover these projects.  They call him Two-Tecs, he totes two Tecs and when he starts to bust, he likes to ask, ‘Whose next?’”
  2. Tupac Shakur, “Holler if Ya Hear Me” – “Once again it’s an all out scrap, keep your hand on your gat and have your boys watch your back, cuz in the alleys out in Cali I’ma tell ya, mess with the best and a vest couldn’t help ya.”
  3. Canibus, “2000 B.C. (Before Canibus)” – “I was nice before ice, before Christ, before the words ‘let there be light,’ and the light took over the night, I was born with the mic, lord of the mic before all plant and animal life.  Took this rap shit to new heights before the Wright Brothers took flight.”
  4. Inspectah Deck, “Triumph” – “I bomb atomically, Socrates’ philosophies and hypothesis can’t define how I be droppin’ these mockeries, lyrically perform armed robbery, flee with the lottery, possibly they spotted me.  Battle-scarred shogun, explosion when my pen hits tremendous, ultra-violet shine blind forensics.”
  5. Jay-Z, “This Life Forever” – “America don’t understand it, the demographics I tapped in, I’m the truest nigga to do this, thinkin’ anything else is foolish.  Like those who stay high under God’s grey skies, my lyrics is like Bible, made to save lives.  In the midst of all your misery nigga, stay fly, never let ‘em see you frown, even smile when you down.  Shit, I floss on my off-days, fuck what they all say.
  6. Eminem, “Stan” – “Dear Stan, I meant to write you sooner but I just been busy.  You said your girlfriend’s pregnant now, how far along is she? Look, I’m really flattered you would call your daughter that and here’s an autograph for your brother, I wrote it on this Starter cap.  I’m sorry I didn’t see you at the show, I musta missed you, don’t think I did that shit intentionally just to diss you.  But what’s this shit you said about you like to cut your wrists too?  I say that shit just clowning, dog.  C’mon – how fucked up is you?”
  7. The Notorious B.I.G, “One More Chance (Remix)” – “The finest women I love with a passion, you’re man’s a wimp, I give that ass a good thrashin’!  High fashion, flyin’ into all states, sexin’ me while your man masturbates.  Isn’t this great?  Your flight leaves at eight, her flight lands at nine, my game just rewinds.  Lyrically I’m supposed to represent, I’m not only a client, I’m the player president!
  8. Kanye West, “Gone” – “What the summer of the Chi’ got to offer an 18-year-old? Sell drugs or get a job you got to play gyro.  My dog worked at Taco Bell, hooked us up plural.  Fired a week later, the manager count the churros.”
  9. Tupac Shakur, “My Block” – “Mislead from childhood where I went astray, till this day I still pray for a better way.  Can’t help but feel hopeless and heart broke, from the start I felt the racism cause I’m dark.  Couldn’t quit the bullshit make me represent, hit the bar and played the star everywhere I went.  In my heart, I felt alone out here on my own, I close my eyes and picture home…on my block.”
  10. Eminem, “Renegades” – “Maybe it’s hatred I spew, maybe it’s food for the spirit, maybe it’s beautiful music I made for you to just cherish, but I’m debated, disputed, hated and viewed in America as a motherfucking drug addict like you didn’t experiment? Now now, that’s when you start to stare at who’s in the mirror and see yourself as a kid again, and you get embarrassed.”