Nicki Minaj is the Best American Rapper of Modern Times (and you can @ me)

I love rap music. Rap and hip hop are two of my absolute favorite genres.

Ice Cube

Ciara

Missy Elliot

Salt N’Peppa

Nelly

The Black-Eyed Peas

Die Antwoord

Gigi Lamayne

Those are just a few of my favorites. Most of them are artists that were popular in the 90s and early 2000s. The 90s saw a TON of incredible rap. The last two listed are modern artists from South Africa.

Pretty much anytime I find modern rap that I like, it’s not from America. American rap music is just absolutely awful nowadays.

Look at the latest “hit” to come out of the American rap industry.

Beat it up, nxxxx, catch a charge
Extra large and extra hard
Put this pussy right in your face
Swipe your nose like a credit card
Hop on top, I wanna ride
I do a kegel while it’s inside
Spit in my mouth, look in my eyes
This pussy is wet, come take a dive

I don’t know enough about music to explain why WAP isn’t appealing using a bunch of technical jargon-time-signatures and all that. I can only react to it as a listener: listening to WAP is not fun. It doesn’t get your heart racing and make you want to jump up and dance. It doesn’t have a super tight, sick flow that has you running out of breath and tripping over your words if you try to rap along.

The lyrics just aren’t tight and clever. The flow isn’t speeding along so quick you can barely keep up with it.

I don’t know when rap got so SLOW. Rap music from about the mid-2010s to now has, overall, been incredibly boring and slow. And why is everybody mumbling and sounding like they don’t give a shit? I put on the rap/hip hop radio station and it sounds like everybody is half asleep.

What I’ve always liked about rap music is how fast it is, how you really need to focus to keep up if you’re rapping along to a really sick flow. Die Antwoord has that fast, tight flow. Gigi Lamayne has that. Salt N’ Peppa had that. Missy Elliot had that.

Today, one of the only American rappers I see with that kind of tight, sick flow is Nicki Minaj. Plus her beats are so banging and a lot of her lyrics are actually clever.

Nicki’s song “Good Form”-which features Lil Wayne-is actually a perfect song for contrasting good rap with bad rap. I’m really not sure why Nicki needs to feature someone with such boring, basic lyrics, when she spits the sickest flows that are so incredible.

Nicki’s delivery of her lines is a huge part of what makes her music so great. So I’ll include the lyrics to read, but just now that the halting way she delivers the lines, along with the way the speed picks up halfway through, this is what really makes it great. All the words just click together like puzzle pieces. You have to hear it for the full effect.

I slick, slick drop the top like nip slips
So he tryna smash like when the whip flips
I hit licks just to floss with this wrist
And when I leave my bitches we all say, “Kiss kiss”
I’m in that new new De Larenta, channelin Bugs Bunny
‘Cause all I want is karats and some big drug money
I’m only loyal to the n***** that’ll bust guns for me
The jig up, it’s a stick up
Run me the money

Then you’ve got Lil Wayne’s slow boring flow. not just slow and boring but….weird….I don’t understand why an incredibly talented rapper like Nicki is featuring such lazy, boring rap lyrics in her songs. Maybe she actually like Lil Wayne? But their styles are so different I can’t imagine why.

“Barbie, I think you gnarly,

I think you fly, all these bitches just larvae,

And you make that ass jump like my heartbeat.”

Ick….Lil Wayne really ruins this song and I don’t know why Nicki Minaj let him do it.

But Lil Wayne is really representative of a lot of the rap scene today: slow, mumbling, goofy rap. It doesn’t make you want to dance; it just makes you want to roll your eyes.

What in the world happened to rap music?

Barbie Dreams is another great song of hers. It has such an old school vibe with that beat. It’s really like a classic diss track, but there’s an element of playfulness to it.

“Had to cancel DJ Khaled, boy, we ain’t speaking

Ain’t no fat n**** telling me what he ain’t eatin'”

That diss is in response to DJ Khaled bragging that he doesn’t go down on his wife.

What really makes Anaconda is the combination of the high-tempo beat and the way Nicki’s rap versus are broken up by the “Oh my god, look at her butt” sampling.

Nicki definitely has more of a pop influence than most rappers and I think it makes her music much stronger. There are a couple of songs of hers where you can really hear that pop influence.

Pound the Alarm is such a high energy song. It has a latin pop influence that makes it so much more interesting and fun than the vast majority of modern rap.

Starships is even more pop-inspired and pulls in Nicki’s whole Barbie aesthetic. The very beginning of the song especially has Barbie vibes. Couldn’t you just imagine that at the start of a Barbie commercial from the 80s or 90s?

And then there’s the gorgeous ballad Pills and Potions

This is the sort of song that really lets you run away with your feelings. It’s so beautiful. There isn’t any rapping in this song, but it’s far too gorgeous a part of Nicki’s oeuvre to leave out.

I’ll never understand why rap has slowed down and become so mumbly and lame.

Let’s get some more of that Nicki energy in the genre ❤

19 thoughts on “Nicki Minaj is the Best American Rapper of Modern Times (and you can @ me)

Add yours

      1. Those are just the 2 songs that they both happen to be in but they’re both amazing. Summertime 06 and Big Fish Theory are incredible Vince albums. I Don’t Like Shit, I Don’t Go Outside is an incredible Earl album!

        Like

      2. But yeah Vince is the best rapper right now in my (subjective) personal opinion. His lyrics are on another level and his flow is insane too. This verse from his song Summertime says it all:

        “My teachers told me we were slaves
        My mama told me we were kings
        I don’t know who to listen to
        I guess we somewhere in between
        My feelings told me love is real
        But feelings known to get you killed
        I feel as if I’m misconstrued
        I spend my moments missin’ you
        I’m searchin’ for atonement
        Do I blame my darker tone?
        I know some things are better left unsaid
        And people left alone
        Pick up the phone
        Don’t leave me alone in this cruel, cruel world.”

        Liked by 1 person

      3. Oh that is really powerful stuff. Maybe I’ll make a follow up post after I check out his music.

        The other really great rapper that I almost think is better than Nicki is Childish Gambino. When I was putting this post together, I had to stop and think ‘is Childish Gambino better?’ and in my opinion it’s really close. I guess i just like rap with a pop influence a lot and for me that’s what puts Nicki over the edge into GOAT territory.

        Like

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