KRS-One Crowned Rap GOAT By Internets
Thursday March 26th 2009,
Filed under: Announcements,Bronx Bombers,Features,Internets,Not Your Average,Vote Or Die
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I didn’t see this coming. I was thinking that Jigga or Nas would have the internets Stans in a smash, but from nowhere came the classic ‘old head’ favourite himself, KRS-One! Turns out he came runner-up to Rakim ‘No Sense of Humor Whatsoever’ Allah when 100 MC’s were polled in HHC magazine, but in the Unkut vote count The 18th Letter came in third place after his son Nasir. Despite my best efforts to rig the polls, Kool G Rap ran fourth place while Jay-Z rounded-out the Top 5 Dead or Alive.

Even though over 200 comments were registered, several indecisive types put ‘tie’ or ‘can’t call it’, therefore not casting a vote, while a couple of characters insisted on keeping a running commentary on proceedings, which resulted in 160 official votes cast. Big Daddy Kane put in an impressive showing for sixth spot, while Biggie Smalls and Ghostface tied for the 7th position with four votes each. The rest of the field was spread across rappers who scored three votes (Big L, Tupac, Kool Keith, Lord Finesse and MF Doom) or less.

Stay tuned for a special dedication to the Blastmasta tomorrow, but in the meantime you might want to read over these classic Unkut drops:

KRS-One – The Unkut Interview Part 1

KRS-One – The Unkut Interview Part 2

The Kenny Parker Show – Part 1

The Kenny Parker Show – Part 2

The Kenny Parker Show – Part 3

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64 Comments so far
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Edutainment was on repeat forever, in my room.

Comment by richdirection 03.26.09 @

in my opinion..

rakim is goat for all intensive purposes but..

“he fell on his back and then i spit right in his guinea face”

kool g rap = people’s champ

plus ghost simply for the fact he said something on a classic lp then came back ten years later and dropped “who the fuck said family ain’t family no more nigga?”

Comment by Jacks 03.26.09 @

Good to see Tony Starks getting into the top 10. It’s deserved, but not expected.

Comment by DJ Wax On 03.26.09 @

I’m 39 be 40 in June and K.R.S was the best that ever did it. Here’s why..he breaks ANY ties with his LIVE shows. I saw Rakim, Kane, LL perform in their prime(no kool G though) and Kris is head and shoulders over all of them..You know who had a good ass show?? Kool Moe Dee he kills it. I’m not a big fan but I was pleasantly surprised

Comment by C Style 03.26.09 @

Still #1 for 20 plus years in my opinion.

Comment by Vincent 03.26.09 @

No one is even in KRS’s league. I have seen Rakim live 3 times, and I keep kicking myself wondering why I put myself through such a bland show. Sorry, but I don’t want to hear Kid Capri pretend that he is still good on the tables, and put his wankish new signees on stage with the R. KRS is the Bret Hart of rap, “The best there is, the best there was, and the best there aver will be.”

Comment by HipHopHistorian 03.26.09 @

No one is even in KRS’s league. I have seen Rakim live 3 times, and I keep kicking myself wondering why I put myself through such a bland show. Sorry, but I don’t want to hear Kid Capri pretend that he is still good on the tables, and put his wankish new signees on stage with the R. KRS is the Bret Hart of rap, “The best there is, the best there was, and the best there ever will be.”

Comment by HipHopHistorian 03.26.09 @

FYI Jacks: it’s “all intents and purposes”…

Ya Slippin’ is my favorite BDP song

Comment by DANKWEED 03.26.09 @

Fair result. I voted Nas but today I was thinking about this vote again and was tryin to decide between KRS and Nas. I decided on Nas because although KRS has powerful lyrics Nas has a better flow and word play.

Can’t really see why Big L was up there though. No disrespect.

Comment by Craig 03.26.09 @

where’s too short?

Comment by swordfish 03.26.09 @

“for all intensive purposes” KRS is the GOAT, let there be no more arguments about that..peace!!

Comment by dj blendz 03.26.09 @

Fair Play Krs is mad nice.

Big L is up there coz he’s one of the greatest punchline rappers ever.

…Still think it’s G-Rap without question tho 😉 ay yo bum-bitch i aint trickin

Comment by RowanB 03.26.09 @

>> I didn’t see this coming. I was thinking that Jigga or Nas would have the internets Stans in a smash, but from nowhere came the classic ‘old head’ favourite himself, KRS-One!

see kings lose crowns but teachers stay intelligent

Comment by nation 03.26.09 @

If U Need Da Synonyme of HipHop, it’s Edutainment!
Blastmasta ternt Teacha, that’s fuckin’ hiphop!!
Knowledge Reigns Supreme Over Nearly Everyone!!!
The Philosopher.

Comment by greums 03.26.09 @

YES Kris-1 !!!!!!!

People really took that serious, I am inclined to agree w/how the entire field laid out.

Comment by bboycult 03.26.09 @

IMHO, and I was a BDP fan all through the 80’s and 90’s (all the way up to Return Of The Boom Bap), KRS was not the greatest to ever do it. I’ll go with Rakim. Oh, and the phrase is “for all intents and purposes.”

Comment by Marc Oz 03.26.09 @

Swordfish makes a valid point.

To answer, I would hope he’s slangin’ tapes from the trunk of his car and is currently offline.

Comment by Bang 03.26.09 @

KRS is a good, solid, fair choice for rap GOAT. When you factor in lyricism, content, and performance, he got it on smash, hands down. Nas coulda been a contender but his stage show is garbage, I seen him forget his lines on more than one occasion. I thought that Masta Ace or Black Thought should at least be in the running or get an honorable mention or something, though, damn.

Comment by chuck 03.26.09 @

I guess I’ll settle for KRS.

Jay is still nicer, Ha!

Comment by Dom Corleone 03.26.09 @

U put KRS’ catalog vs Nas catalog and live shows and KRS will always win .. Nas doesnt freestyle either so his radio appearances usually come with album “Freestyles”

Comment by dolo 03.26.09 @

gotta say by all means necessary was one of my first tapes and that shit is memorized from beginning to end… word

Comment by er4se 03.26.09 @

smh @ people saying Big L doesnt deserve top 10 status. And where is Pun?

My vote would be for nas.

Comment by killakate 03.26.09 @

Thank you.

Comment by Da PartyStarter 03.26.09 @

I wonder if the results would have been different if this had apppeared on different blogs.

Comment by Cal Ulmann 03.27.09 @

This just proves that the internet is full of retards.

Krs ONE hasn’t made a decent song in the last 10 years

not even in my top ten

Kool G Rap, number one.

Comment by AFFEX 03.27.09 @

Hands Down Its KRS. Rakim Is 2nd, Rakim Cant Freestyle, Live Show Sucks & He Wasn’t Even Eric B’s First Pick, B Wanted Freddie Foxxx. KRS Kills Every Show, Shit He Invented Almost Everything In Hip Hop or Was The First To Do It. Battle Rapper, Lyricist, graffiti artest. The MC Philly….1…2wonpound (215)

Comment by Chaz 03.27.09 @

Krs is insane though. And he made like 1 good song in the last 10+ years. His albums are not as good as Nasir’s.

Comment by Stieflkater 03.27.09 @

To me it’s Nasir Jones the greatest.
but yall know that g.rap, kane, rakim, krs one
was the four fantastic. 80’s Greatest !
then yall know that biggie, jayz, nas and pac
was the four iconic. 90’s Greatest !!
but line for line, rhyme for rhyme… NaS >

Comment by greums 03.27.09 @

nas over krs…..? ok i didnt wanna write but krs had dudes in queensbridge shoutin bridge is ova…cmon now younglings…..

Comment by Mercilesz 03.27.09 @

p.s. thanks for the heads up DANKWEED…

Comment by Jacks 03.27.09 @

you ever notice how everyone on the list is from new york?

Comment by moxymonster 03.27.09 @

EAST COAST BIAS (even though I voted Jay, ha!). It’s like saying that Len Bias was the best that ever did it (except KRS OD’d on himself).

There’s a whole generation of people who think you just voted an old ass Sublime song as the #1 rapper. Awkward.

Put the discography’s out there and really compare. A vicious line is like a highlight dunk during a game, a nice song is a win, and a complete classic album is a championship.

You guys just voted George Mikan as the best to do it! WTF? PUT HIS STATS OUT THERE!

Comment by G Off 03.27.09 @

Sex and Violence spent a whole summer in my tape deck, until the tape broke. LOVE that release. And the “first live album in the history of rap” is one of the best ever IMO. I saw KRS-One several times in his prime, and when he was not freaking out over untalented sound men running the boards at his shows he was rather incomparable.

Comment by Dave 03.27.09 @

I would agree that the internet is full of retards, but most of them voted for anyone that made their name in the 90’s or later. I love G-Rap, but all of his music is about the same thing. KRS-One has, and continues to make timeless music, and it all has an uplifting message.

Comment by HipHopHistorian 03.27.09 @

Clearly, most of the people that voted were from New York or from the North East Coast. People in Florida, Texas, and Cali would without a doubt vote Tupac as #1. Lets be fair. Tupac was atleast better Big Daddy Kane and Ghostface. Thats that New York mentality. You ain’t great unless you representing New York to the fullest. Load of BS!

Comment by Reece 03.27.09 @

^^u really think pac was betta than kane and ghostface? i think he had more of an impact cause of what he stood for(half the time anyway)but lyrically i dont see pac as better than both kane and be honest ny has always been known for the lyricism while for me the west for the most part was about that gangsta image over that funk sound

Comment by dj blendz 03.27.09 @

it shouldn’t be surprising but it is, i thought it would be kool g or rakim, just cause most of the readers here are fans of the grimiest lisper to do it, and the god, but krs-one is a philosophical mastermind and really puts more thought in his lyrics

Comment by gstatty 03.27.09 @

Tupac had some nice joints, but he wasn’t what most would consider an emcee. He certainly wasn’t known for a live show, freestyles, or battling. I would put him in the top 50, but nowhere near the top 10.

Comment by HipHopHistorian 03.27.09 @

Of course most of the MCs on here are from NY, becaue that IS WHERE THIS SHIT STARTED! Pac better than Kane??? I am not saying Pac wasn’t good, but if there was no Kane, there would be no Pac. And same goes for Nas. He is great (We all know what Illmatic was/is- CLASSIC), but if it wasn’t for cats like G Rap, Rakim, and KRS, there would be no Nas. My vote still goes to the R, but I can’t argue with the Blastmaster.

Comment by BIGSPICE 03.28.09 @

well this argument is certainly going to go somewhere

Comment by Jacks 03.28.09 @

man, fuck you new jack scenester fags. you nerds have a taste for shit.

Comment by sean from utah 03.28.09 @

Notorious B.I.G. 2 albums my ninjas…..just 2 albums. Smh…just imagine

Comment by fedogs 03.28.09 @

yeah Biggie Only 2 album,
But Big Pun, Big L not much songs too !
and if no kane no jay, no rakim no nasir
same thang no krs no pac, no g rap no big

Comment by greums 03.28.09 @

This whole if there was no X, there would be no Y argument is one fatally flawed logic. Ironically, nobody who espouses this ever thinks about it enough to recant a vote for Big L in favor of Lord Finesse…

Frankly, I wouldn’t vote for KRS. I’m a huge BDP fan, and Edutainment is easily one of my favorite albums ever, but sometimes I think KRS gets votes based on ulterior motives. There’s no way to prove it, but I think a vote for KRS is kind of survey bias – the same way nobody ever responds that they are racist on a survey, yet racism pervades society. People answer what they think they “should” answer, as opposed to what they actually feel. KRS is a safe pick that nobody can knock. Maybe some really feel that Jay is the best, but don’t actually want to say it because of what he’s associated with, for example. A KRS vote doesn’t come with that sort of baggage. Just food for thought. My vote would probably have been for either Rakim or Nas, actually.

Another question: how many of you would answer the question differently if it was posed “favorite” instead of “greatest?” I think that’s a fair question, because I would answer these questions differently. AZ and Cormega may be my two favorite rappers ever, but I wouldn’t nominate either as the “greatest.” For similar reasons, I wouldn’t have voted for G Rap here either – “greatest” implies some intangibles, IMO.
“Greatest” isn’t even the same as “best,” IMO. Pac, for example, has a stronger case for “greatest” than he does for “best.”

Anybody share these nuanced distinctions?

Comment by digglahhh 03.28.09 @

Coming from the BX, you realize KRS importance. The guy represented the BX from day one. NO other MC has rep their hood as much as KRS. He put the BX on his back and 20 years later STILL has the BX on his back, WITH NO OTHER MC IN HIS STABLE, OR CRU. Rakim might also have claim to this but the R cant rock a crowd like KRS…no one can.

Comment by HuntdPointFame 03.28.09 @

Clearly, most of the people that voted were from New York or from the North East Coast.

Comment by Reece 03.27.09 @

….I voted (tie btwn Rakim and G.Rap so I guess my vote did not count) and I am from Rome, Italy.

Comment by ceedub 03.28.09 @

Digglahhh, your points are interesting…

1)I agree with you when you say that the X-Y argument cannot be considered as a point to say someone is better than another. If we cared about this than Grandmaster Caz or Melle Mel would have won this poll hands down. Of course the fact that someone pioneered something counts. You mention Lord Finesse, he might not be as deep as KRS or Rakim but he is a hip-hop legend, a battle veteran and the essence of a freestyle mc. He is in my top 15 as is Big L.

2)About KRS being a safe pick…of course it is but there are reasons why it is. Jay-Z fully showed his skills only his debut album, the rest of his albums had plenty of filler material. Plus, he was one of those who made commercial Hip-Hop accepted and that’s something that true heads will never forgive him. Being a good mc is not only about how skilled you are, it’s also about how true you keep it. And same thing goes for Nas.

3)Favorite or greatest? I also say that “It Takes a Nation of Millions” is the greatest hip-hop album ever but probably it’s not my favorite. It’s there but some other albums are more on my daily rotation than it is for many different reasons. But being the greatest means being it for a long long time, maybe forever. Being the favorite changes all the time. For example, right now my favorite mc is Joell Ortiz. Is he the greatest? not even close.

I think KRS has a right to be the greatest, just as Rakim, Kool G.Rap and a few others mentioned (not 2Pac, not Jay-z, not Nas).

Comment by ceedub 03.28.09 @

Comment by greums 03.28.09 @

KRS is the Bill Cosby of rap.

Comment by Salty Fisherman 03.29.09 @

i can’t see ghostface as the best from wu-tang, let alone at seventh goat. and no love for chuck d?

Comment by bonin 03.29.09 @


KRS-ONE will always be the Greatest of All Time.

Comment by Redstarr 03.29.09 @

rakim is the greatest of all time but krs is an acceptable result.

Comment by 456 03.30.09 @

Even Obama dont want it with Kris!

Comment by chronwell 03.30.09 @

I’m not really mad with this one. KRS for ’09, You Suckers!!!

Comment by Combat Jack 03.31.09 @

This site is hot. The cartoon pic from the Source is timeless. Keep up the great work.

Comment by SPank (Divided Souls Ent) 03.31.09 @

I have to agree with digglahh just a bit. I am a fan of KRS’ (as it relates to his better years), but I do think he tends to be the “obligated choice” due to the status he had years and years ago, and because it doesn’t come with a lot of debate to say he’s great. There’s even people who would contest someone saying Rakim, because it’s been beaten into the ground so much that it’s become cliche to say he’s the greatest. But KRS has that happy medium where he’s not the guy the kids mention, and he’s not always the oldheads’ first choice either. So he hasn’t been underrated nor overrated, therefore a SAFE pick.

And on a side note, his fans like to forget that while they rally against the guys who supposedly “sold out” in the late-90s, KRS was right there with everybody else doing a track with the guy who was DEFINITELY the hip-hop purist’s Anti-Christ in ’97 (I don’t have to say his name, do I?). But much like with a lot of things, KRS gets a pass not granted to others who did the same. So whereas you have a Jay or a Nas never being fully forgiven by the “heads” because of the changes they made in their careers, that “Step Into A World” remix stays buried like it never happened. This is what I think he was saying by calling KRS a safe pick, because he seemingly is the only one who gets passes by the “heads” that others don’t.

Comment by DANJAMANIA 04.05.09 @

i neva woulda figured that in 2009 KRS would be a “safe” pick for GOAT…some of ya’ really need to brush up on his history,and also the argument about his sub-par later albums,name me ONE MC from them days that hasn’t been puttin out garbage for the “step into a world” remix anyone remember the ‘classic’ from the dynamic duo of rakim and jody watley?? and being that we into “safe” picks what about kane’s subpar albums?? Veterans Day,anyone?? Should i now get into LL’s career?? G Rap?? remember “click of respect”? oh no, so how ’bout the ‘classic’ giancana story’? still dont remember..oh well. case in point being ALL these emcees have fallen off at some point,KRS is NO no i dont buy KRS as a “safe” pick,if that’s the case i would go with Rakim,who i think would be the best choice for “safe” pick..peace

Comment by dj blendz 04.05.09 @

To my man bonin – you can’t deny Chuck D’s work or that he’s got a steady flow, but he’s never been that nice on the mic. He’s does have a good voice though, and that goes a long way. I think that’s what’s missing these days in rap. Every cat sounds the same.

Comment by farns 04.06.09 @

“1)I agree with you when you say that the X-Y argument cannot be considered as a point to say someone is better than another. If we cared about this than Grandmaster Caz or Melle Mel would have won this poll hands down. ”

Thank you Ceedub, I’m glad somebody mentioned Melle Mel. Really if you list all of the things that an MC has to have that would put him in the running for GOAT, Melle Mel wins.

1. Melle Mel was arguably the first rapper. There are shows from 1978 floating around on the internet with Melle Mel flowing while Grandmaster Flash is rocking breaks. And this was 1978, a full year before Rappers Delight.

CHeck Melle Mel’s flow on The Message, Beat Street, Step Off, White Lines, New York New York. This is all stuff from the early 80s and he raps circles around cats that are out now.

I’d put Melle Mel’s performance on The Message and Beat Street up against anything Rakim, KRS, Nas, Jay Z, Kool G Rap, etc has ever done. And he was laying it down in 1982!!!!

Melle Mel is The GOAT because there was nobody before him, nobody that influenced him to do what he was doing. I mean, Nas had Rakim, Ghostface had G Rap, etc.

If we are going by the “If there was no X then there would be no Y” argument than Melle Mel wins.

If we are just going verse for verse, Melle Mel still wins.

Name 1 song that personifies rap better than The Message – Grandmaster Flash and the Furious 5….. Can’t do it.

Melle Mel is the true GOAT.

Comment by 5 Grand 04.06.09 @

and KrS although he looked up to him Shut him down for a Grand live on stage…..oh well

Comment by Mercilesz 04.07.09 @

KrS is not the rap goat. More rappers need to get on his level, hopsin is definitely doing that

Comment by killa kev 04.10.09 @

^^ no thank u i’d rather see paint dry

Comment by dj blendz 04.10.09 @

ha ha thats hilarious

Comment by Mercilesz 04.12.09 @

to me the GOAT has to be Melle Mel cuz he is like the blueprint of the rapper (especially to KRS)

my personal favorite is Kool Keith tho
“innovatin’ this patterin” keith is one of the most unknown influential emcees.. most original rhyme patterns and ideas.. most people were influenced indirectly by him with the offbeat rhythms (if you emulate rza, ghost, wu or even dipset to a degree you are unknowingly influenced by Kool Keith!!)

Comment by ANORMOUSdotcom 05.13.10 @

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