Finding the GOAT: Lauryn Hill vs. AZ…Who You Got?

As we continue the ultimate battle for the title of the GOAT (Greatest of All-Time), we are asking you to help us rank who is the greatest MC to pick up a mic. We will take over 35 years of Hip-Hop into consideration, pairing special match-ups in a sequence not unlike March Madness. For the next several months, we will roll out battles, starting with artists from similar eras paired against one another, until one undisputed King or Queen of the microphone reigns supreme.

The next two MC’s to square-off started in the 90’s and are still influential today: Lauryn Hill and AZ. Each has rocked the mic as a member of a super group and as a soloist. Check out a recap of both MCs’ careers below and then weigh in with your vote.



For many, AZ’s introduction came by way of a blistering verse on Nas’ “Life’s a Bitch” from Illmatic. As the only featured lyricist on Nas’ classic, AZ more than earned his spot. Since that guest turn, AZ has released 8 solo albums and a classic collaboration project with Foxy Brown, Nature and Nas, as part of The Firm. Mr. Consistent, AZ continues to shine today, dropping mixtapes and loosies on the regular. Despite his outsized skills, he is arguably one of Hip-Hop’s most underrated MCs.

See: “Life’s a Bitch” (1994) (with Nas), “I’m Back” (2002) (with Daddy Rose), “The Come Up” (2005)

Lauryn Hill


As an actor, singer and rapper, Lauryn Hill is one of Hip-Hop’s greatest triple threats. She burst onto the scene as part of The Fugees with partners Pras and Wyclef Jean. After 2 critically-acclaimed albums with the group, including the commercial juggernaut The Score, Lauryn released what is widely considered one of the greatest albums of all time with The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill. Part fierce rapping and part emotion-filled Neo Soul, the album broke the mold for what a Hip-Hop LP was supposed to be. It earned Lauryn 5 Grammy Awards, including Album of the Year and Best New Artist. Sadly, it would be the only studio-recorded album Lauryn has released to date.

See: “Lost Ones” (1998), “Vocab (Remix)” (1994) (with The Fugees), “Fu-Gee-La” (1996) (with the Fugees)

So…who you got?

Voting For Round 1 is now closed. Stay up to date with the latest Finding The GOAT brackets



Lauryn Hill

Related: Finding the GOAT: Talib Kweli vs. Lloyd Banks…Who You Got?