Similar to Wiz Khalifa, B.o.B. crossed over to the land of the unidentified genre. B.o.B. showed us glimpses of his gritty-ish rap style with “Haterz Everywhere” and “B Is For B.o.B,” but his mainstream recognition was for his alternative influenced music such as the tunes heard on his debut album, The Adventures of Bobby Ray, and most of his earlier work.
B.o.B. released a slew of mixtapes including The Future, Cloud 9, Hi! My Name is B.o.B and Who the F#*k is B.o.B?, all of which demonstrated his niche musical mannerisms. His unconventional approach was a set-up for a promising career, catering to a broad demographic.
Contagious singles like “Nothing On You,” “Don’t Let Me Fall,” and “Airplanes” made him a mainstream success, but what really makes B.o.B. a staple artist is his mastering of the cross-genre art. Even though most of his beat selection might not hold a tinge of Hip-Hop, he’s able to tailor his lyricism to compliment it without compromising creative value. On one of his mixtapes, appropriately titled No Genre, B.o.B. exercised that craft well, revisiting more authentic rap styles while continuing to dabble in waves of pop somewhere in between.
At times the Grand Hustle artist seems to struggle with finding a happy medium, something he addressed in a recent interview when speaking on his next album. The Atl-ien shared that he found a balance on the follow up to his debut, producing a more mature, less experimental sound.