Hip hop: one for the ages, Big Daddy Kane vs. Rakim (Part 1 of 3)
The Rakim Story:
First off let me start by saying I myself I am a huge Big Daddy Kane fan. He’s my favorite MC of all-time. However I must say that regardless of how I feel I will be impartial and state only facts. Besides regardless who you pick. THERE IS NO WRONG ANSWER! Let us continue…
Any true hip hop fan will tell you that during raps golden era there were two MCS that stood out above all the rest. Those two MCS would be Rakim from Eric B & Rakim & Big Daddy Kane from the Juice Crew. All apologies to KRS ONE whose hip hop legacy requires Blog of his very own. But in the forum will focus on just the two aforementioned MCS.
I can remember having this debate with countless people over the years. I used to be so pro Big daddy Kane that I would disregard every Rakim counter point giving by the person or people I’m debating with. Before the Biggie vs. Tupac beef and way before the Jay-Z vs. Nas battle there was the public’s fictional battle between Kane and Rakim. However these two MCS never battled each other or even acknowledged there was any angst towards each other publicly. But I’m sure they were both watching each other close and listening to every bar spat into the mic to see if there was a legit reason to go at each other. Some people will say that Rakim was referring to Kane on his song “No Competition”. Big Daddy Kane also made quick supposed jab at Rakim on his hit song Set it Off. “feel my bloodfist or my death kiss the rap soloist you don’t want none of this” referring to Rakim who routinely called himself the rap soloist.
Sure there were a lot of subliminal words aimed at each other but none that actually mentioned anybody’s name. These two kept it peace. Most people believe that it was because they both share the same belief. They’re both outspoken/proud members of the 5% nation. That’s the belief that men all men are considered Gods. I don’t know if this is the real reason they never battled but if it is I respect it.
Eric B and Rakim enjoyed massive success in the late 80’s their first 2 albums are considered to be hip hop greatest albums ever released. As a Kane fan I can agree with this point. Paid in Full & Follow the Leader were released in 87 & 88 these two albums set the standard in hip hop music. Paid in Full’s hit songs included Eric B is President, My Melody, I Ain’t No Joke, Move the Crowd & You Know I Got Soul. When anyone of these songs comes on the crowd will go bananas. On their follow up album “Follow the Leader” Eric B and Rakim continued to set hip hop ablaze with tracks like Follow the Leader, Microphone Fiend & The R. Eric B and Rakim Recorded 4 albums together the last 2 were “Let the Rhythm Hit Em & Don’t Sweat the Technique”.
These albums further pushed the duo further into hip hop lure. Even though they didn’t garner the same buzz around these releases they provided a few more classic songs to the catalog. Such as the songs “In the Ghetto, Let the Rhythm Hit Em & Mahogany”. Also on the album “Don’t sweat the technique” were song’s like “What’s On Your Mind, Know the Ledge (featured in the movie Juice) and Casualties of War. Shortly after that Eric B & Rakim disbanded and Rakim would go on to record 3 more albums as a soloist. Those album titles were The 18th letter, The Master & The Seventh Seal. Even though The 18 letter sold better than 500,000 records the hype and allure of Rakim was never matched by his earlier success with Eric B. This however never stopped critics and hip hop fans to continue to bolster up the legacy of Rakim. I personally know a Rakim fan who named his first born son after him. Rakim has some of the single most loyal fans in hip hop history. As a lyricist, songs aside Rakim is undoubtedly one of the greatest ever if not the greatest period. He has birthed a lot of MCS who aspired to achieve the lyrical acclaim of their hero. Rakim, a True Hip Hop legend. Stay tuned for part 2 of 3…