Out with the old, in with the new. Hip Hop in 2015 was an interesting place to be in. We’ve had a lot of breakouts from many artist, the superstars of the genre hit their home runs, and some old characters made comebacks.
As I compose my list of favorite songs this year I must say, it was pretty hard to pick a select few out of hundreds. A matter a fact, with the amount of time I now have on my hands, I could list them all (but I won’t because nobody wants to read all of that). With that said, I’ll keep this list brief with ten random songs (with brief descriptions on why I picked them). Starting with a rapper who has the best Twitter account; Vince Staples.
Vince Staples; Lift Me Up: Summertime ‘06
Vince’s rapping ability is pretty darn good. In this song, his rap voice is pretty commanding. The production on the song keeps me interested and as far as subject matter is concerned, it’s there. It’s real. Vince is a pretty smart guy and so far has not said any of the wrong things. This guy is someone to watch for in the future (spoiler alert).
Big Sean; Paradise: Dark Sky Paradise
Big Sean has improved in a span of over a year. This Mike WiLL Made-It assisted song is a good example of his progress. The wordplay and bars on this song were captivating. The extended version of the song is what really hits home though. Definitely a favorite of mine this year. Kudos to Mr. Sean.
Wale (Feat. J Cole); The Pessimist: The Album About Nothing
I’ll be honest. The melody and J. Cole (Surprise!) saved this song. Saved enough where I like it a lot. J. Cole does not have a verse on the song but his hook here is money (This isn’t the first time where Cole has outshined Wale). If it weren’t for those two elements that I liked so much, I’d probably dislike the song because of Wale’s “respectability politics” verses personally.
Earl Sweatshirt; Off Top: I Don’t Like Shit. I Don’t Go Outside
Earl may very well be the best technical rapper on this list. (Actually, he is). His music tends to be dark yet so good. Off Top to me is short and sweet to the point. The track is under two minutes and Earl just comes right at you in under two minutes. I enjoy the beat on this as well.
Drake; Know Yourself: If You’re Reading This It’s Too Late
My feelings on Jimmy Wheelchair (no I will not call him the 6 god) fluctuates. I feel like he’s dope yet pretty lame at the same time. However, this banger is catchy, energetic, and gets me in a better mood when I hear it. Boi-1da also deserves an award for being a part of the production process by the way.
Mac Miller (Feat Chief Keef); Cut The Check: GO:OD AM
Anytime you get Chief Keep to speak clearly on a song, you get major points for that. Kanye did it before and now Mac as far as I know. Chief’s verse wasn’t bad at all on this track and Mac did his thing on their as well. This song was good enough where I was curious to check out Chief’s album which came out not too long after Mac’s did. As of today, I realized that was a mistake.
Curren$y (Feat Riff Raff); Froze: Pilot Talk III
Spitta usually has good tracks to offer with his mellow/reserved vibe. He has a good ear for beats and Riff Raff (yes Riff Raff), was a good fit for the song (like Chief Keef, I checked out one of his projects after hearing this verse and I regret the decision). The cadence of the song was to my liking so therefore it was enjoyable.
Jay Rock (Feat Busta Rhymes & Macy Gray); Fly on the Wall: 90059
A laid back west coast song which has some personal history on it between artist, Jay got me with this. It’s a smooth song with smooth instrumentals to boot. The hook on this song is a nice touch as well. Kudos to Jay, who had one of the better projects that were released back in early fall.
Kendrick Lamar; Alright: To Pimp a Butterfly
The hook is uplifting, the melody/beat which incorporates some Jazz is great, and K. Dot himself delivers on the verses. The hook of this song is often chanted at Black Lives Matter protest around the country. Which shows its importance to many. Also, this song is often heard at parties too. A dual threat? I think so.
Future; A song of your choice: A project of your choice
Of course Future aka Future Hendrix, Future Vandross, Dirty Sprite Legend, and the Freebandz General was going to make this list. He’s had an incredible run within a year. Don’t know many who’ve topped him this year. With that said, it is pretty hard to choose ONE song from him. Therefore if you want, pick a song from any album/mixtape of your choice and claim that as your favorite. There aren’t many bad options (unless you pick from What a Time to Be Alive with ekarD). The decision is all up to you. If your mind is already made up, great. If not, find one. If you don’t want to, I won’t be mad at you. To each their own!
A few shout outs to some other artist who’ve provided me with some other favorite songs of the year; Migos, Anderson .Paak, Action Bronson, Chance the Rapper, K Camp, Kyle, A$AP Rocky, A$AP Ferg, Pusha T, Travis $cott, Freddie Gibbs, Big Boi, Lupe Fiasco, Dr. Dre and Goldlink.
Welcome to the AD report.