Unsigned doesn't mean indie and neither do internet freestyles (no matter how many you drop). As many surprisingly cheered XXL's Big 10 for featuring Killer Mike and slept-on acts like U-N-I, the rest cried foul for omitting Crooked I. Granted, the likes of Skyzoo and Consequence are worthy, they just weren't buzzing enough at the time The Big 10 was published.

Here, XXLMag.com lists honorable Big 10 snubs and why they didn't make the cut.

Ice Cube: The Don Mega has only put out one track recently, but “Gangsta Rap Made Me Do It,” and the Nas and Scarface-laced remix, definitely had people talking. Cube, however, makes more noise when his albums are actually out than the lead up to them.


Crooked I (Snubbed On A Technicality): The Left Coast lyricist beasted multiple beats for weeks, but the former Death Row artist’s label was actually distributed by Universal Records. Making him ineligible to be considered an indie artist. Now Crooked I is between distributors and, according to his camp, he’s looking to ink a new deal “very soon.”


Termanology (In Due Time): The half-Puerto Rock lyricist has been laying the foundation for his rise for some time now, starting with his Hood Politics mixtape series. He’s built a following, both online and in the streets, and now folks are just waiting on that album to finally drop.

Ya Boy

Kidz In The Hall:This Ivy League duo made noise first by aligning with Rawkus Records and resurrecting the famed New York indie hip-hop label. Then they partnered with Duck Down Records introducing them to a new set of fans. Naledge and Double-O also hit the road opening with Gym Class Heroes. But they're on the downward spin of The In Crowd’s album cycle.

Kid Cudi

Tech N9ne (Our bad):The Kansas City-based veteran rapper just landed at number one on the Billboard independent album charts with his latest LP, Killer. We like totally missed that one.


Honorable Snubs

Bad Timing:

*Sean Price
*Little Brother

We Major:
*Jim Jones (Signed To Sony)
*Wale (Signed To Allido/Interscope)
*Charles Hamilton (Interscope)
*Pacific Division (Universal Republic)

In Between Deals:
*Joe Budden
*Joell Ortiz