The ten best storytellers in hip-hop

Categories: Lists

8. Immortal Technique
"Dance With the Devil" might be the most powerful story ever told in hip-hop; it's gripping and almost enjoyably inevitable until the staggering, tragic end. "Peruvian Cocaine" is a posse cut where the rappers play roles in an elaborate, politically damning tale of how cocaine gets moved from Colombia to the U.S. "You Never Know" is a beautiful love story that ends in the heartbreak that all of Tech's stories seem to end in.

7. DMX
DMX has an intensity level that gives importance to everything he says, and his ragged voice adds character. He also speaks from the heart, and when he laments his inability to take control of his life in "Slippin'" and the "Damien" series, you believe it, and because of the way he says it, you pay attention. DMX's flow is very natural with enjambment that veils his rhymes behind the more important themes, and his stories are rich in vivid imagery -- "I keep 'em scattering like roaches when the light goes on" from "Crime Story" -- and dark epiphany.

My Voice Nation Help
26 comments
truth
truth

Agreed! Finally a writer in Westword that really knows Hip-Hop!! about damn time...

Colfax Jack
Colfax Jack

The Rhymesayers record label is full of great storytellers. Atmosphere's album "When Life Gives You Lemons..." is a great example of storytelling in hip-hop. But one of my favorite lines is from Brother Ali: "I write the raps for the ones Johnny Cash wore the black for."

David Avius Romero
David Avius Romero

Slick Rick, Brother Ali, Slug, Pac, B.I.G., Nas, Eminem, Jay Z, Black Thought, Will Smith. Runner UP: Masta Ace and

Andy Thomas
Andy Thomas

Snow. I never snitched again after hearing "Informer."

Jacob Ryan
Jacob Ryan

Kendrick, J.Cole. At least for today

Rob Ruby
Rob Ruby

Fuck this list. Guru all the way. RIP

Lynette Vigil
Lynette Vigil

Jay Z is HORRIBLE!!! He doesn't deserve to be on the list he cares more about getting rich, then he does about the craft of story telling

Tylr Tre
Tylr Tre

Hov ain't even on the list? ? Gtfoh.

Tylr Tre
Tylr Tre

Jay Z. No question about it.

Now Trending

Around The Web

From the Vault

 

Denver Event Tickets
Loading...