This week I did a feature for 66Raw.com on the five hip hop artists whom we are anxiously awaiting new albums from and that got me thinking: which hip hop artists have we given up on? You know the ones who were unstoppable in their prime, but have since fallen so far off the hip hop radar that they would be better off retiring than ever attempting a comeback album. This blog is a simple letter to them:
Thank you for your contributions to hip hop greatness. You rocked the mic then. Now you should just go away so we can remember you the way you were.
#5: Mystikal—In his prime, no one could touch Mystikal. His style, sound and flow were completely unique and that made him a hip hop gem. But after being incarcerated for 6 years, hip hop sorta forgot about Mystikal. And since he hasn’t come with any heat after being out the pen for a year, you have to wonder, does Mystikal still have it? Maybe he should leave his hip hop legacy unscathed and retire. The man may not be right chere anymore.
#4: Ja Rule—You can hate if you want, but at one time, Ja ruled hip hop. Then out of nowhere this guy named 50 Cent came and dissipated his career. The next thing we know, Ja is serving two years on gun charges. Crazy, right? For those of you who are anxiously awaiting a Ja Rule comeback album, let me convince you to let go of your hoop dreams. Ja Rule’s “gangsta” is no longer respected. He’s lost his steam. But, Ja, you did have a good run. Salute, sir.
#3: Lil Kim—It breaks my heart to write this because I’ve been a Lil Kim fan since Hard Core. And in all honesty, I felt her when she made her comments on Nicki Minaj. Nicki did steal Kim’s persona and paying homage would have been respectful, but I need for Kim to stop whining and get in a booth. If all you’re going to do is have a temper tantrum every time Nicki releases new music or works with someone you used to (keywords being used to) work with then, dang, let her have the persona. Someone needs to use it and since you aren’t…*sigh*. I was really looking forward to a Lil Kim comeback, but now, I just wish she would retire on Tupac’s island. At least then she would leave her legacy untainted.
#2: Tupac—Now y’all know I love Tupac—the man, the artist, the legacy—but the man’s been dead for almost 15 years! Can he please rest in peace?!?! Stop putting his verses on tracks with artists who don’t deserve to accompany him. Stop “paying homage” to him in dumb, bootleg songs like “Tupac Back”! And stop faking sightings of the man in exotic locations. Yes, we all miss him, but enjoy the art and legacy he left behind and stop trying to recreate him.
#1: Lauryn Hill–*sigh* I love her. I’ve been her biggest cheerleader even through all the bad PR her latest tour has brought. But when I’m really honest with myself, Lauryn is done. The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill was a classic album that will ALWAYS rank among the top hip hop LPs, but that Lauryn is gone bye-bye…and I don’t think she will ever return. *tear*