With MTV’s Hottest 2009 MCs List causing uproar and controversy because of the selections, many MCs have voiced their opinion on the selection premises and criteria to how the lyrical titans were chosen. The most talked about placement has been Atlanta MC Gucci Mane making the list and the omittance of Slim Shady. Also not making the list but having one of the best albums of the year (Category F5) so far is one of Chicago’s coldest, Twista.
Heralded for years as an MC’s MC, Twista spoke on where he feels he ranks in the game and his criteria for ranking those he feels should be considered the best. Talking with Hip-Hop Wired, he said,
“I wouldn’t put myself as a number, but I would rank myself as one of the top because a lot of the times you have two types of MCs. Some of them can come up with metaphors to death, but can’t make a style or ride a beat to save their life. Some artists can ride the fu*k out of a beat and give you different styles and melodies, but the subject matter is garbage.
I feel like I am able to do both. Certain artists like Jay-Z, Eminem, Busta Rhymes, Ludacris can do both. Some artists will just ride their rhythm or just give you those metaphors and can’t really mesh both worlds. What makes a top lyricist or MC to me is one that can come with rhythm and patterns as well as metaphors as well as being an entertainer with the lyrics and having some type of battle skills. Those are the things that make a top lyricist.”
Releasing his first record in 1991, Twista also spoke about breaking the myth that rappers can’t last past five albums and that you can have a career as an MC as many veterans like himself, LL Cool J and Jay-Z have proven. He added,
“My mark is putting it down for the Mid-West and the mark of longevity. When people ask, I want my legacy to be longevity and I want to be the one who when you look up and say that a rapper can’t last in the game as long as an R&B artist or any other genre of music, I want to be the first example. I want people to look up and say look at Twista.
Not just from music though because for longevity in music you have to have the talent to do music to the fullest and you have to be a well-rounded person to the best of your ability. No man can make it in any business if he makes bad decisions in life. I feel like just having a cool head on my shoulders and coming with the music the way that I do is the reason that I can drop a record in ’91 and still have Akon and Kanye on my record in ’09.”
Check out Twista’s latest single from Category F5 below: