Sadat X Drops A Freestyle Filled With The Grown Man Rap He’s Made For Years (Video)

Debates about a so-called “generation gap” in Rap music will likely be a perennial characteristic of the genre. As recently as the June release of JAY-Z’s 4:44, vociferous fans and critics engaged in discussions about “grown-man Rap” and how a 47-year-old MC was able to drop one of the best albums of his career more than 20 years since his debut. Hip-Hop Heads rightfully pointed out that Jay is hardly the first rapper to make “mature” music, and some MCs have argued they’ve always made Hip-Hop that enlightens, inspires, and grows – including Sadat X, a man who has not only contributed to the education of Rap fans, but also to students in the New York State public school system, in which he has served as a certified teacher.

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The Brand Nubian rapper recently visited Sway as he continues the promotional run for his new Diamond D-produced album, The Sum of a Man. In the first part of their interview, Sway asks Sadat X to share his thoughts on not only JAY-Z’s latest work, but also how he feels about it being discussed in a way that suggests it was the first example of adult-friendly Hip-Hop. “I really love that folks are gravitating towards JAY-Z’s new album,” Sway says at the 6:04 mark. “A lot of the things he’s saying today is messaging that you’ve given throughout your career,” he says to Sadat. The MC agrees, saying “I’m happy that Jay put this project out because he’s on a big platform, and if it take him to put it out [for] people to gravitate towards that, I’m happy.” However, he adds “I still want people to get [The Sum of a Man], something that I’ve been doing. Something that I was taught to do, something that I was bred to do.”

Over the course of the interview, Sadat X and Diamond D discuss a variety of topics with Sway, but it’s at the very end during which Sadat displays some of the mature, educational rhymes he’s been kicking for decades. In a freestyle beginning near the 4:19 mark in part three of their interview, Sadat drops a laid-back series of knowledge-packed raps. Within just a couple of minutes, he’s able to create a historical map of sorts, explaining the history of New York Rap culture and a blueprint for anyone looking to learn more about the people, places, and things that made Hip-Hop culture what it is today.

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We taught some of y’all, don’t get it f*cked up / Y’all ain’t just luck up, we had a new way to chef it / Maybe we shoulda left it / We stayed too long, maybe played too long and had to swallow them years / You remember Rooftop and The Tunnel? / Latin Quarter was a jungle / School for gladiators, project radiators lettin’ off steam / When the boroughs connect, it’s a hell of a team,” he spits.

Elsewhere in their interview, Sadat touches on the teachings of the Five Percenters, his work as a schoolteacher, and more. Diamond D is heavily present in the interview as well, explaining how Mike Brown’s killing inspired his production as well as his desire to work with J. Cole.