Hip-Hop is different than it used to be. One debate that often comes up is if having street credibility even matters anymore.  I really don’t think it does.  Here are 5 examples of artists that prove my point.

P.S.: Anyone who claims I am hating in this article is failing to recognize the point I am making.  That is all.

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1) Rick Ross. Rosé is obviously example number one.  That dude has less street credibility than I do.  Guy was a correctional officer.  Now his whole persona is based of being some sort of a Miami coke overlord.  More than likely the most weight he’s pushed is when he walks his fat @$$ up a flight of stairs.  That being said he has MONSTER records and his persona is highly entertaining as well as comical.  This guy never bores me.  So to be perfectly honest I could care less about his past.

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2) Plies.  Ok first off this guys legal name is Algernod.  What’s gangster about that?  This dude also managed to get a degree from the University of South Florida.  I didn’t know you could major in goonery.  My favorite fun filled fact about Algernod is that he didn’t even get arrested until after he became a famous rapper.  I mean even Jamie Foxx clowned this guy.  How you gunna be a gangster and let Jamie Foxx clown you?  That’s what we call a fail bruh bruh.  That being said this guy stays winning with monster hits.  Plus it’s always funny to see the guy talk.  You know in real life he is super articulate and sh*t on the low.

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3) Lil Wayne/Birdman.  These guys pretending to be bloods actually legitimately pisses me off.  Both of these dudes starting claiming the set after they were both already millionaires.  I just don’t know many people who join street gangs after they have sold millions of records or operated a highly lucrative entertainment company. T-Rodgers one of the founders of the bloods just laughed when he was asked if Lil Wayne was a real blood.  (Go 4 minutes into this Youtube video).  I mean it’s just ludicrous when you see Birdman soo-wooing in the Mandarin Oriental in London.  Because gangbangers tend to hang out in the most exclusive hotels in London.  SMH.  Plus Wayne always mentions getting shot in his records but he often fails to mention that he shot himself.  Don’t try to mention his current bid as legitimizing factor.  Getting caught with an illegal gun on your tour bus when you have paid security doesn’t make you “G”.  It makes you stupid.  Has this been detrimental to their careers?  No, because Lil Wayne is a superstar and Birdman operates one of the most successful record labels in the music industry.

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4) Soulja Boy.  This dudes original claim to fame was for inventing  a corny dance and rocking cheap sunglasses with his name painted on them in white out.  Now he has tatts on his face, and according to this new record with 50 Cent collab he has guns and goons.  Really?  Because how G is it to have your card pulled by one of the most infamous groupie b*tches of all time.  Plus in his “When I Was 17” segment on MTV he mentioned that he was to scared to tell his dad he got suspended from school.  What a tough guy. Who cares though?  This kid stays on that Forbes list.

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5) Drake.  Now Drake is kind of the exception on the list in that he at least doesn’t even pretend to be “gangster”.  But he is a perfect example of how you don’t even need to have street credibility to “win” in this game anymore.  Arguably the biggest new artist in hip-hop right now used to be wheelchair jimmy on Degrassi.  Dude stays on that emo rap tip, and people seem to love him for it.  The guy even raps about getting victimized during a robbery in his music.  Aubrey will kill you with his obnoxious pout face before he hits you.  However Drizzy gets money and chicks want to f*ck him merely for what he represents.  Drake – 1.  Unnecessary street cred – 0.

  • Stilltific

    and that's why hip-hop is so irrelevant these days as a whole

  • Serfnturf

    hiphop is done im about to listen to only danchall atleast them is real bad man

  • Methods0024

    Wow sam you wrote a decent article for once!!!

  • rick ross is the greatest fraud hip hop has ever seen. A cop turned gangster rapper…wow.

  • hek718

    I think that street cred still does matter. But not in the sense that you have to be a gangster, hip hop was always poor kids music. You have to have something to say, these guys don't have much to say at all except complaining about being successful in one song then boasting about it in the next. Hip hop used to be a well rounded culture now its all about the rapping. Everybody got swag but no soul.

  • http://twitter.com/iHipHopSam iHipHop Sam

    Having street cred does matter. It definitely helps the longevity of your brand. My point is that you don't need it.

  • ReallyP

    I think Hip Hop has always had frauds but the technology today allows you to be exposed much more easily. The truth is there are people are making careers out of being haters. Rappers are entertainers. Every time DMX goes to jail people say he is an idiot he's stupid ect. They don't say he's building his street cred or keeping it hood they point and laugh. My point is let people do them cause i rather listen to a fake with talent than a real criminal who is a bum. But you can always hear the real in the music without a real dude trying. Cause real street fans listen to certain terms that go over bloggers and writers head. And you forget cops and public officials are the most corrupt so Rick Ross might be a real gangster with a pension and a health plan. Great Post Sam

  • Young Prince 74

    I just want to say this, not saying I'm cosigning dudes history because I don't know him but everybody is Rickys dick about this CO thing. But just because a nicca had an honest gig at one point in his life doesn't mean he never had a hand in the streets. It's wasn't like he got his deal as a CO. Secondly even if he was CO doesn't mean he wasn't moving drugs. Shit how do you think most of that shit gets in the prison. Show me a big time drug dealer in jail and I'll show you a nicca with a few CO's and beat cops in pocket. Just because you work for law enforcement doesn't mean you abide by the law someone has to be clean to make shit happen. I mean even still to this day in Chicago no matter what you hear CPD is still the biggest most dangerous gang in the Chi. The start the most wars, kill the most minorities, move the most illegal arms and drugs on the street. Them boys in blue are ruthless.

  • http://twitter.com/JPjasonpowers Jason Powers

    Good article

  • BigWig

    this might be the best article i've ever ready on ihiphop. props.