Finding The GOAT (Round 2): Andre 3000 vs. Buckshot…Who You Got?
We have reached the second round in 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 “playoffs style.” Since Fall 2014, and 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.
At the beginning of the 1990s, both Andre 3000 and Buckshot Shorty emerged as youths with a lot on their minds. While each MC seems to reach those on both sides of right and wrong, one chose a subdued, crisp and smooth delivery, while the other was rugged, abrasive, and defiantly in-your-face with his. Both of these men influenced legions since, with thriving labels, classic albums, and extended movements in the form of Dungeon Family and Boot Camp Clik, respectively. One of the artists has a long wall of platinum plaques, major film roles, and the mystique that comes with self-imposed recluse. The other voice has an extensive, and rather ceaseless catalog, side groups, and everybody from 2Pac, to Eminem, to KRS-One looking for his voice and vibrant perspective. Only one of these indelible artists can advance to Round 3, so help us get to GOAT (click on one to vote).
Voting For Round 2 is now closed. Stay up to date with the latest Finding The GOAT brackets
Andre 3000 (First Round Bye)
Outkast’s Andre 3000 joins Nas and The Notorious B.I.G. as one of the everlasting breakthrough artists of 1994. As a teenager at the time, Andre Benjamin quickly proved to be a source of insightful verses that are as much syncopated Spoken Word as they’re simply raps. The Atlanta, Georgia native is a poet who—to quote Khalil Gibran—”composes what life proses.” That very gift has made 3 Stacks a beacon to pimps, players, poets, philosophers, and preachers alike—in the same couplets and stanzas. His musings form enduring verses on the subjects of competition, sex, racism, exes, and simply hangin’ out, the Southern way.
In the course of his career, the MC (who also produces hit records for himself and others) has operated near-exclusively in the guise of Outkast. However, even without an album in nearly a decade, Andre 3000 has challenged his own silence with sporadic, highly-penetrating songs and mere 16-bar appearances. Whether he’s making the next ‘Kast moment, or simply having fun on a DJ Unk ringtone-hit remix, 3000 is able to make even the most fickle fan a listener. His catalog of songs largely feel like new, insightful commentary that stands tall, whether 1994, 2004, or 2014. He has classic albums, the upper-echelon of sales figures, and has made hits, whether working with Gwen Stefani or Devin The Dude. With a rich vocal tone amidst a Dirty South cadence, ‘Dre still has a clarity and adjustable flow that no one can mimic. Although he is never short on self-confidence, the quietest giant in the search for GOAT may be Andre 3000. Sometimes the best is the one who never claims to be.
Other Notable Songs:
For just over two decades, Buckshot Shorty has been a balanced archetype for a street tough backpacker, a homogenous blend of B-boy and “BDI Thug.” The Brooklyn, New York native released a classic debut in 1993′s Enta Da Stage, alongside DJ Evil Dee and 5FT in Black Moon. Buck led the lyrical way, with accounts of navigating some ruthless streets, earning respect, and bringing hardcore Hip-Hop back to the forefront. That’s been Kenyatta Blake’s prerogative for more than 20 years now. Through his co-founded Duck Down Records, Buck’ has helped reinvigorate DIY, low-profile Rap music that’s always been about everyday issues, love of culture, and advancing the art-form.
Although Buck’s stuck to his script since the beginning in terms of subject matter, the Black Moon MC has been a major proponent of accentuated delivery and evolved style. Outside of the dusty loops and vibrant samples of his original outfit, this Boot Camp Clik founder has played with aggressive, radio-minded musings on his lone solo LP, The BDI Thug, before a run of works with 9th Wonder, dabbling with sweet Soul and vocal play. The MC manipulates his resonant voice to suit any vibe, and has successfully provided an ongoing lyrical dissertation that’s connected with many Heads, including Blastmasta KRS who sought out Buck’ for a collaborative album. Slow and steady wins the race. The finish line remains ahead for this Bucktown MC who captured an authentic New York experience, and merged Hip-Hop with Gangsta Rap, shooting fair ones on the mic and on Franklin Avenue anytime it was necessary.
Other Notable Songs:
So…who you got?