If you are age 25 or younger, you probably don’t realize that at one time CeeLo Green was one of best MC’s in the world. Yes, the guy who once wore a suit made out of flowers and sang in it on national television could go bar-for-bar with any rapper out there.
As a member of Goodie Mob, CeeLo enjoyed some moderate success and lyrical respect, but was usually overshadowed by fellow Dungeon Family members Outkast. Where ‘Kast made music that made you “throw your hands in the ayer,” Goodie Mob made music that made you look out your window. It wasn’t until he broke off from Goodie Mob, rapped less and sang more that Hip-Hop fans at large started begging him to return to his roots as an MC.
Ever since his 2002 solo debut Cee-Lo Green and His Perfect Imperfections blurred the lines between Hip-Hop and whatever-the-f*ck-else (a year before Andre 3000’s The Love Below), CeeLo has been making music by his own rules. His 2004 follow up album Cee-Lo Green is the Soul Machine continued to push musical boundaries and his 2006 link up with Danger Mouse to form Gnarles Barkley took those boundaries and fed them to the wolves. By the time 2010’s The Lady Killer dropped the words “CeeLo” and “Hip-Hop” were like oil and water. Even Goodie Mob’s 2014 reunion album Age Against the Machine didn’t give us not one full CeeLo 16.
While it’s been quite some time sense we’ve heard CeeLo utter anything close to a rap verse, we don’t doubt that at the drop of a dime, he could still rip your favorite rapper to shreds. You don’t spit verses like the ones he did on “Goodie Bag” or “In Da Wind” and lose that skill forever. As a singer/songwriter, CeeLo is one of the best, so that has to mean that his pen is still sharp and ready for battle.
Until the day comes that CeeLo returns to emceeing and takes a small break from “singing like Adele” [2 Chainz words, not ours], check out this list of the times he proved that he’s probably still better than your favorite rapper.
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