It’s hard to fathom but The Notorious B.I.G.’s seminal masterpiece from 1994, Ready to Die, officially turns twenty. The album is, to this day, renowned in the hip-hop community not only for its incredible longevity but its stark storytelling about growing up in the ghetto and experiences as a young criminal. The album was significant in pushing hip-hop as an art form and critics took note, praising Biggie for his poignant, semi-autobiographical lyrics and vivid imagery. We thought it would be fitting to look back at these said lyrics, primarily those that are still ill to this very day.

See the full list after the jump.

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Is Whiteface The Future Of Hip-Hop?

 |  September 19, 2013
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la weekly’s ben westhoff wrote an investigative article about the rapper riff raff, in an attempt to lift the veil on his purposely obscured “actual identity.” it seems obvious that his actual identity is that of a coon, a racial caricature, a thin mockery of the genre in which he plays.
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i wasn’t even gonna speak on the lil homey kendrick at ALL at all. then this dude came completely out of his dickies to a TMZ cameraman about responses to his Instigator Verse. like, “they gotta try harder” or some other 2% milk light-weight business. that’s when i was like…
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How NY Hip-Hop Died On 9/11

 |  September 11, 2013
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what is cultural memory? news stories and internet videos are 3-minute clips. toddlers of the millennium can use a tablet before they know how to speak; instant fame has shrunk from the designated fifteen minutes to a few. the cycle goes: reality show star to porn debutante to burnt-out addict in 2 years. simply put, we’re tired of remembering so we gave up on it.
 
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Kendrick Lamar: King of New York?

 |  September 11, 2013
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It’s been over a month since Kendrick Lamar shook the Rap world to its very foundations with his verse on Big Sean’s “Control”. If you have been hiding under a rock and have not heard the song, Kendrick claims the title of King of New York while appearing to take shots at J. Cole, Big K.R.I.T., Wale, Pusha T, Meek Mill, A$AP Rocky, Drake, Big Sean, Jay Electronica, Tyler, The Creator and Mac Miller. Rappers from every section of the globe bolted to their Twitter accounts and their soundproof studio booths to respond to the Compton native’s jabs. Some applauded Kendrick for giving rap a much needed shot in the arm, while others took things a bit more personally and made response records. Read More

The happily married Monica wants to show us all that marrying a b-ball star was not the end of her career. With this new hit with Ricky Rozay, she wants to take us back to when she was hot… the ’90s! “Anything (To Find You)” is the first single off her seventh studio album, New Life. Truly taking it back, she samples Biggie’s “Who Shot Ya” in this Missy-Elliot produced track. Rocking bamboo earrings, rope chains, and dancers with rainbow leggings (the true essence of 90′s hip hop style), I was waiting for Lil’ Kim to show up… But unfortunately, she was removed from the track. No love for the Queen B, but with Rozay’s hardly memorable cameo, this might generate more views. I’m not going to lie, I enjoy the track, but can Monica compete with today’s hottest? Watch the vid below and see for yourself.

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