Old people vs. Li’l Wayne, or Why Weezy Doesn’t Belong on a List of Best Rappers

I first started listening to rap music in 1987, as Bowen Smallwood and John Tipton introduced me to some guy named LL Cool J, who continually told listeners he was B.A.D. (Bigger and Deffer). I’ll pause for a moment while you picture three little country boys running around with a boombox blasting Mr. Cool J.

Finished? Not quite?

Now? OK.

Over the years, I’ve stayed fairly in touch with rap, at least more of the mainstream artists (overly long and indulgent side note: I leave the deep underground knowledge to my friends, in increasing order of undergroundedness, Shane Carpenter, Adam Thompson and Cory Graham, the latter of whom once successfully operated a late-night weekend rap show on WSKV, Stanton’s home to country, bluegrass and gospel and, for a short time during Cory’s run, Wu-Tang).
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2010 music: Still looking for more great albums

As it is with every December, the annual end-of-the-year “best of” lists have started rolling out in various magazines. I saw two today, from NME and Paste, neither of which had 2010’s best album, Kanye West’s “My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy,” at its deserved spot at the top (NME had it in the mid-30s, which is just silly), and it started me thinking of my own list.
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Rap concerts can pose a problem

None of us were sure of the rules.

I’m pretty sure none of the 59,997 others around did either.

Near the end of our second day of our first Lollapalooza experience in 2006, Cory, Rachel and I stood in Chicago’s Grant Park, ready to see Kanye West take the stage. We’d been hyped for this particular performance for months, but despite all of our preparations, we still had one question that remained unanswered:
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