LOW RIDER RAP TRACKS: 2Pac, Snoop Dogg with Willie Nelson, Big Daddy Kane

snoop-willie nelsonThe Marijuana Hall of Fame collaboration: A geriatric outlaw country singer teams up with Long Beach California’s original laid-back gangsta rapper, throw in a blues harmonica player for one of the oddest pairings in music history. Somehow the jam session works out beautifully highlighted by clever lyrics like “Too many pain pills, too much pot, trying to be something I’m not, Superman, trying to do more than I can, I’m not Superman”. If you think Snoop is the biggest pothead you’ve ever seen, check out the last minute of the video when Willie shows him what’s up.

unconditional_love_2pacTupac Shakur maintained a hardcore thug image, but many of his lyrics read like inner city poetry. Stanzas and verses that reveal a deep psychological determination to make sense of the inequities in the world today. A perfect example is 2Pac’s rhymes on Unconditional Love from his posthumous Greatest Hits CD. The spiritual song was actually written for his friend, MC Hammer’s comeback album on Death Row Records:
Come listen to my truest thoughts, my truest feelings
All my peers doing years beyond drug dealing
How many caskets can we witness
Before we see it’s hard to live
This life without God, so we must ask forgiveness
Ask mama why i got this urge to die
Witness the tears falling free from my eyes
Before she could reply
Though we were born without a silver spoon
My broken down TV, show cartoons in my living room (hey)
One day I hope to make it

big-daddy-kane-smooth-operatorNo one in the early days of Hip Hop better merged slow jam rap grooves for the ladies while maintaining street cred as one of the greatest MC’s of his generation. Big Daddy Kane is often listed among the most intelligent wordsmiths in the rap game. On his second album, It’s A Big Daddy Thing, two throwback jams, Smooth Operator and I Get The Job Done, both got heavy rotation on urban radio and Yo! MTV Raps.