After listening to Ghostface’s In Tha Park feat. Black Thought, first posted on T.R.O.Y., I have come to realize it might be impossible NOT to include Black Thought among the 5 best rappers today. Follow me on this one, go back to ’94 when A&R extraordinaire Wendy Goldstein signed them to Geffen Records. Months later (Jan ’95) they dropped their major label debut Do You Want More?!!!??!.
Many consider that very album to be a true blue classic with stellar tracks such as Proceed, Silent Treatment, Distortion to Static and The Lesson, but it wasn’t until later in his career that Black Thought truly developed into one of the best all-around emcees in the game. Like vintage wine, he got better with age. It happened to Steven Tyler, Phil Collins to even rappers like Lil Wayne and MF Doom.
Ghostface Killah –In Tha Park feat. Black Thought
If you go back to the mid-90’s (technically The Roots dropped in ’93 w/Organix), think of all the rappers who stayed consistent and actually got better. In 2011, you probably won’t even be able to think of 5 rappers that has consistently put out great music and aged gracefully with each passing year. Redman? Nope. Ghostface Killah? Need I remind you of the last 3 years of his career? Nas? LOL. Pharoahe Monch? Nah. Think about it, many rappers peak and quietly fall into hip-hop obscurity. Some continue to embarrass themselves with failures at reinventing themselves or keeping up with the status quo.
For years many people wrote off Black Thought as being lyrically lyrical and ain’t saying nuthin’. Well, a lot of those people had to change their mind when they heard Thought @ Work, Web or the sociological tracks on Game Theory. Since then Black Thought hasn’t dropped a weak verse.
It’s true Black Thought doesn’t have that one song like Rakim does, like Big Daddy or even Biggie. Black Thought has a plethora of great songs, great albums and phenomenal guest appearances. AND he is still doing it! While there are many great emcees today like Jadakiss, Jay Electronica, Pusha T, Andre 3000 & Lil Wayne, not many have catalog, consistency and most importantly the longevity that Black does.
Is Black Thought a Top 5 MC today? I don’t see how he isn’t. In fact, he is probably flirting with Top 15 all-time status with each verse he lays. –Philaflava