The XXL freshman list has one of the most interesting love/hate relationships among hip hop fans. Hip hop fans love the anticipation of waiting a year to see who the new underdogs or the new rising kings and/or queens that will come take the throne for that year. So, when the cover is revealed…everyone hates it and complains. Some become upset because their new favorite rapper may not have made the list. Others can be justified that some or majority of the artists don’t deserve to be on the list. I have no hate for any of the artists that made the list, but this year, I feel that many artists were overlooked. As I look back at 2013, I base a “freshman” or a candidate that should be worthy for the list on my “ABC’s” (artistic authenticity, buzz, consistently) for the XXL list. Within the list, I do feel that there are a couple of artists that deserved to make the cover but were not. Here are a few artists that I feel were redshirted from the list:
1. King Los – I don’t know if XXL has a personal vendetta against Los, but this man has shown his worth to hip hop over the past couple of years. Artistically, there aren’t too many artists doing what he does. His vernacular and diction are superior to many of the vets in the game now. Kendrick Lamar said himself, that the best “Control Remix” came from Los. He should have got it when he dropped “Fall for your type” years ago.
2.Rapsody – I don’t Believe in the term “femcee”. I think it’s degrading and continues to segregate the hip hop culture. “She got Game” was one of the most talked about mixtapes of last year. I remember listening to the mixtape all the way through and not taking it out of my CD player for weeks. I remember hearing the great wordplay from “Dark Knights” and how she brought back that old hip hop feel. She is putting Jamala and North Carolina on the map.
3. Lecrae – He is more of a John Connor of the list, but he has steadily been creating a buzz and won over hip hop heads with “Church Clothes”, “Gravity” and “Church Clothes 2”. He’s worked with some of the biggest producers, DJs, artists, had huge tour turn outs, been discussed on within at least 3 of Dead End Hip Hop’s video discussions and just recently announced a new album this year. Hopefully, this will catch XXL’s ear.
4. Dee-1 – This guy has been making some real moves with his “one man army” movement starting with his break out track “Jay, 50, & Weezy”. He went on tour with Macklemore and has been receiving huge buzz from his “I hope they hear me” series. Last year he signed with RCA Inspiration. I knew after hearing “Writer’s Block” that he was going to blow up.
5. Andy Mineo – Andy Mineo has been a name that has been coming up a lot lately. Some has been his particular stance on certain views, but I believe last year, the biggest conversation his name was in was the “they ain’t got the answers” freestyle he did with Sway on the MTV Rapfix live cypher. This freestyle was so impressive that Sway got him on his show. He dropped “Neverland” last year and is building up steam this year.
6. Add-2 – ” Between Heaven and Hell” was possibly the best mixtape that came out last year. “Club Church/Club Hell” is one of the best songs to drop last year (in my top 10 songs of all time). Due to the project dropping so late, I think that it’s going to go into his favor for the list this coming year. All he has to do is drop an album and it’s as good as his.
There are more that I want to add to the list, but are still in their proving phase. I can assure you that you will be hearing/seeing more of these redshirted artists this year. With some of the buzz that these guys/gals are getting now, their success may pass many of the freshman on the list. Watch, listen and learn about these names…they will be making changes in the game real soon.
Do you believe any artists got redshirted from this year’s XXL Freshman List that were not mentioned above? Let us know in the comments section.
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This is a nice write up. I wasn’t feeling all those artists XXL picked anyway. Chicangeorge got me looking out for these guys on this list. Great job Dead End Hip Hop.
i love this list, i think King Los deserved to be there, without a doubt…Rapsody is dope, and i would have loved to se her on the cover too
1.Snow tha Product: she can spit with the best and do it FAST!!! she is loved among the strange music crowd and imo would have been better off if she signed with them instead of atlantic records
2. Clyde Carson; the guy is a vet and is well respected in the bay. His flows and increadible ear for beats that fit his voice and articulation. His Playboy EP released earlier ths year has been on my ipod cycle for a while now, it brings both the old and the newskool bay-area slappers on one tap. The only thing that stands in his way is that he had a big hit a couple of years ago (Slow down ft The Team)
3. Rittz: come on, for R E A L? this guy DESERVES to make it, great flow, fast spiter and lyricly on point
4. A$AP FERG: IMO ferg might be the biggest talent in the A$ap mob. Trap Lord was a decent album with some nice songs like; cocaine castle, hood pope and LORD ft BTNH, but imo it’s the songs and features he has done AFTER dropping TL that have been dope (for ex Big KRIT- LAC LAC ft Ferg). Love his Bone-thugs flow.
5. Bishop Nehru: I mean, The kid is like 16? 17? and he’s on Tour with MF DOOM!!! that should say enough, if you havn’t checked this dude out, you’re missing out on something
woops meant to say that the other nams where guys who deserved it too (more than quan and all those rappers with lil in front of their names)
@tex6 Believe it or not, but Bishop Nehru was on the list. I just felt he was still in his proving phase. I expect him to be on the XXL cover next year. If not, you know which list he will be on. LOL! Thanks again for reading. Make sure you share!
Lecrae was on the list the same year as Big K.R.I.T.
@Sergio Not sure about that. In 2011, it was Meek Mill, Big K.R.I.T., Cyhi the prince, Li Twist, Yelawolf, Fred da Godson, Mac Miller, YG, Li B, Kendrick Lamar and diggy. He may make it this year? Thanks for reading though.