The Best and the Worst Things that Happened to Hip Hop in 2012
Best New Edition in 2012
2012 gave way to many great things in rap. These are the greatest:
1. Homophobia & Religion finally get their day in court
For decades in hip-hop we’ve had all these rappers celebrating organized religion and so few delving into it in a real way especially not in the mainstream. With Jesus Piece and Food and Liquor II coming out this year, there was a lot to be said about religion in hip hop. Race has always been a huge issue in rap so it was good for a change to see religion get the same attention. Also with Frank Ocean (the first decent non-straight rapper, yeah you heard me Sissy Rich) coming out as bi this year and Lil B dropping I’m Gay (I’m Happy), people also go to talking about homophobia in hip hop and that let a few unexpected rappers come out in the support of the gay community.
2. Joey Bada$$ & Pro Era
New York City hip hop is back not solely because of Joey and Pro Era but they are the best young MCs to come out in years.
3. The Return of Crews
I like seeing all these crews with their leaders coming up (Joey & Pro Era, Kanye & G.O.O.D. Music, A$AP Rocky & A$AP Mob, Tyler & Odd Future, Curren$y & Jets Life, etc.). The truly great leaders can make average artists great (Kanye & Pusha T), which is always good for a genre like hip hop.
4. Black Star is Back
Nothing really needs to be said about this now, does it?
5. Young Chop
Best new producer, I’m excited about the coming years when he branches out farther from GBE.
6. Honorable Mention: Molly
Molly is responsible for making some of the great minds in hip hop even better: Danny Brown, MC Ride, A$AP Rocky, Kanye, and many more.
Worst thing to happen to hip-hop in 2012
1. Capital STEEZ Death
This is not only the worst thing to happen this year, it is the worst thing to happen in rap in a very, very long time. It sucks to see anyone die. It sucks even more when that person is young. It is a terrible tragedy when that person is Capital STEEZ, one of the best and most promising young rappers in recent memory. This is especially hard for young rap fans; not only was STEEZ only about 2 months older than me he is the first celebrity of any kind that I’ve cared about that has died in my life time and the same can be said for a lot of people my age. It came three days after the release of Pro Era’s second compilation album, The APROcalypse, and it made listening to it that much more difficult. I wish the best to Joey Bada$$ who lost his best friend, the rest of Pro Era, and STEEZ’s family.
2. White Girl Mob
Ugh, let’s just pray they don’t become popular and start some fucking trend.
3. Young Money’s Take Over
As previously mentioned, they were nearly unavoidable… although it looks like that’s over!!
4. Nicki Minaj
She has inspired a train of terribly awful female rappers. Good for her, bad for all of us.
5. The End of the Cool Kids
Chuck Inglish and Sir Michael Rocks have been putting in solo work for a long time but I was always hopeful we’d get another mixtape or album before the real break up. We also lost Das Racist.
6. Honorable mention: Molly
Makes terrible rappers even stupider (Trinidad James, Kreayshawn, Lil Wayne, Juicy J, etc.)
7. Honorable mention: Worldstarhiphop.com grows bigger by the day
Worst website ever made and it is becoming a bigger part of hip hop every day, I just hope they never host a mixtape, or at least a mixtape I want to hear.
Biggest Let Down of 2012
A let down requires expectations. I expected these to be much MUCH better than they were.
1. All City Chess Club
If you’re a fan of the new school of hip hop, you’ve been excited about All City Chess Club for years now. Lupe and Pharrell’s super group has been promising us a mixtape for so long it’s starting to look like it may never happen. But I do not intend to give up hope.
2. XXL Freshmen Cover
I mean…Iggy Azalea, Future, and Don Trip. Seriously?
3. Wiz Khalifa
I thought this would be Wiz’s year for a comeback. I thought maybe he’ll go the way of Curren$y and stop sucking and be dope again. I was wrong; Allderice wasn’t awful but O.N.I.F.C. was. Better than Rolling Papers though I guess.
4. Snoop Lion
Fuck you doing Snoop? Fake Jamaican accent? Terrible reggae beats? What’s happened to one of the last great living legends?
5. The Heist- Macklemore & Ryan Lewis
I don’t like Macklemore but people do and I see his appeal. From what I had heard from Macklemore and Ryan Lewis before The Heist I expected something cleaner and more diverse. Except for the music video for Thrift Shop there wasn’t much good to speak of from this album.
6. The Weeknd
Where’d he go? He ran 2011 and was poised to take over in 2012 but he didn’t. Maybe next year.
7. J. Cole
Another vestige of earlier years who really should’ve done more but instead disappeared.
8. Nipsey Hu$$le
Everyone was talking about Nipsey in 2011 like he was about to take over the West coast. Then nothing worth talking about happened.
9. Fortune- Chris Brown
Worst album of the year. I like Chris Brown but I have no expectations of greatness from him. This is why it wasn’t such a HUGE let down.
10. Life is Good-Nas
Everyone was claiming Life is Good was the best Nas since Illmatic. Which, hey, might be true, but it still wasn’t good.
11. Honorable Mention: Jesus Piece-Game
Great, and I do mean GREAT concept. Executed poorly. I can’t wait for the next rapper to drop an album about the hypocrisy in religion and hip hop.
Worst Performance in 2012
Their constant production of shit speaks for itself so I feel no need to say anything about any of these embarrassments. The people on this list are depressingly terrible… at least they were in 2012 maybe some of them will wake the fuck up in 2013.
2. Iggy Azalea
3. Juicy J
That’s right nigga ain’t NO body safe
7. Nicki Minaj
8. Rick Ross
10. Lil B
This is the only one I’m going to say anything about because let’s be honest I am as Based as the next guy. Lil B is on this list because he is terrible, but he’s 10th because he also is great and he knows it. I’m all for challenging what is “good” in music but when you challenge it for so long and so stridently like Lil B has it becomes hard to tell if her knows he is making crap music or not. I mean Lil B you release 1000 mixtapes a year why don’t you just make one of those good so I can prove to people that being Based is a good thing.