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#16 Jadakiss


Lyrics 9

"I don't know if it's better to ride or better to die, and that's why there's red in my eye."Still the truth after all these years, if Jada isn’t in your top 20 then maybe your jeans are too tight. All the same he’s a throwback to the golden era, mainly because he’s actually from that era and has never changed, knowing when you’ve made real songs with Big (no made-up shits) there’s no good reason you should have to. Slick wordplay and pure street knowledge, Jada is still better in this lane than 90% of our new artists.

Delivery 9

"Pocket full of cash, wallet full of plastic, in and out the lanes, dippin through the traffic, we ain't hustling no more we doing gymnastics, couple of flips and then stash it, bastard." With the original raspy voice Jada has one of the most celebrated flows in history, and that’s a fact that nobody can take away from him. Both his faithful supporters and detractors will tell you in the better part of two decades he’s never changed his delivery once, and how that’s received is ultimately up to interpretation. Some say he’s one dimensional and some say there’s simply only one way to rap so smooth, therefore why should he change up the formula when that’s always been his trademark. I liken it again to a point guard with a crossover or a shooting guard with a step back, if that’s your bread and butter then do what works for you.

Structure/Songwriting 7

"Thought like I did and said it like this, what if Peyton was fighting dogs instead of Mike Vick." Jada has a few hit records of his own, and even more with The Lox, yet anybody that knows Jada understands the jewels are in the album cuts. All the same We Gon Make It, Knock Yourself Out, and Who’s Real are some of his most celebrated solo records, with Money, Power, & Respect & Recognize two certified classics from the Lox as a collective. Timeless album cuts however include Feel Me, Keep Your Head Up, By Your Side, Still Feel Me, Thing’s I’ve Been Through, Smoking Gun amongst so many others. Furthermore he has introspective creative records such as Why and What If, that showcase his wit and smooth delivery while contemplating on all the world’s ills.

Content/Meaning 8

"Now the road to riches is taking me longer, it ain't killed me yet so it's making me stronger, I don't know if it's the hate, frustration, or hunger, that keeps a ***** goin, rapping for a reason." Hailing from Yonkers, Jada and the Lox have always been proud of where they’re from, and they’ve never been hesitant to say it in their music. New York street knowledge with the tranquillity of an OG, Jada is a straight shooter who’s a poet for the neighborhood, although his words often blend into the same story. However often speaking on behalf of the distressed and the have-nots of his community, Jada provides hope and is living proof that from Y.O. you can make it, and he carries that honor with dignity and nobility.

Self Made 8

"I don't go to church much but I need him a lot, and the Ryde is Ruff that's why I got D on my Block, so you can't even get it less I give it to you hard, and every ***** don't get a dap, some ***** get a nod." ⅓ of The LOX whose most successful days were under the imprint of Bad Boy, Jadakiss has still maintained relevance as a solo act, with sharp lyrics and a distinctive delivery that has made his presence very recognizable. While the lyrics are his own he relies on The Neptunes, Swizz Beatz, and Alchemist for production.

Image/Branding 8

"My first addiction GI Joes and Icies, after that it was light skinned girls and Nikes." He’s super cool and you never catch him slippin, Jada’s image is in tact as well as his brand, which strictly represents being as thorough as possible and not worrying about the new fashion trends.

Sales 7

"Had the whole world ready to Ryde or Die for me, and I wasn't even Platinum I was just side money, X was bringing in the mula, I was in the hood in the kitchen, with the digital ruler." A Gold selling artist his first two albums his last two haven’t really come close, although his 2009 album did move respectable units. His latest 2015 album Top 5 Dead or Alive sold 60,000 first week however, which is hardly a bad number despite it’s poor representation of an artist of his stature.

Ability to Rock an Instrumental at a Radio Station 9

"I was fortunate cause I did a lot of listening, the new era is missing it, everybody 357 and 4 5th'n it, drug program 2 to 4, 3 to 6'n it, feds send ***** way out to Lake Michigan, put the coke in the tires only if they Michelin, never talk on the phone only deal with official men, you don't even know homie that put you in the shit you in." Jada can spit his writtens no problem whether on the block, on the record, or at the radio station, and always does it with relative ease. From the legendary D Block freestyles to his own solo work, Jada gets it in everytime. Thus while he hasn’t had as many of these moments in recent memory, there’s no reason to doubt him anytime he’s in front of a mic.

Ability to Fuck Up a Rewind Button 10

"Picture Kiss not come out swinging, it's like going to see 50 at a show and he don't come out singing, yeah you got a felony but you ain't a predicate, never the King of New York you live in Connecticut." Jada was one of the original fuck up your rewind buttons, his penmanship and delivery is just that smooth. Still to this day he has this capability as much as anyone, evident in features when staying on a long hiatus, yet anytime he graces the mic you know he’s good for it every verse.

Longevity 10

"Too hard for MTV, not black enough for BET, just let me be." Already in this game 20 years strong, Jada is a living legend of Hip Hop, regardless of whether he’s commercially viable at this point. No matter the sales his name will always ring out, as one of the most respected MCs to ever touch down.

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