Last week when BET broadcast their annual Hip Hop Awards, fans everywhere couldn’t help but marvel at the network’s pre-taped rap cyphers. From Busta Rhymes to Skillz, several MCs participated in cyphers where they kicked wicked rhymes over a loop of James Brown’s “The Big Payback.” The legendary DJ Premier spun the record and provided scratches in between verses. While Eminem, Slaughterhouse and Yelawolf clearly had the best cypher, XXL is already looking forward to next year. We’d love to see crew cyphers from Roc Nation (Jay-Z, J. Cole and Jay Electronica), G-Unit, the Diplomats and Vado, Wu-Tang Clan, The Ruff Ryders and of course Young Money.
While having our own cypher (no rapping, just journalistic debate) a few days ago about BET, we decided that our staff would conceive our dream cyphers and let you see them. The only criteria we had when coming up with these, none of our dream would include deceased hip-hop legends. Take a look at what we came up and then send in your own list of dream rap cyphers. Look for us to take the conversation to Twitter as well @xxlstaff.
Staff Member: Jayson Rodriguez, Executive Editor
Dream Participants: Nas, J. Cole, Snoop Dogg, and Big Daddy Kane.
Instrumental: LL Cool J’s “Ill Bomb.”
Staff Member: Carl Chery, Digital Content Director
Dream Participants: Nas, Jay-Z, Lauryn Hill and Andre 3000.
Instrumental: Group Home’s “Living Proof.”
Staff Member: Jesse Gissen, Digital News Editor
Dream Participants: Ghostface Killah, E-40, Kool Keith, Cam’ron, Lil B and Mixtape Weezy.
Instrumental: Ultramagnetic MC’s Ego Trippin.
Staff Member: Mariel Concepcion, Deputy Editor
Dream Participants: Jay-Z, Nas, Lil Wayne, Rick Ross, Diddy and Kanye West.
Instrumental: Rakim’s “Know the Ledge”
Staff Member: Mark Lelinwalla, Senior Editor
Dream Participants: T.I., OutKast, Ludacris, Young Jeezy and Rick Ross.
Instrumental: Puff Daddy’s “Young G’z.”
Staff Member: Adam Fleischer, Music Editor
Dream Participants: Eminem, Nas, Cole, Kendrick Lamar, Saigon, Joe Budden
Instrumental: Gang Starr’s “All 4 Tha Cash”
Staff Member: Ralph Bristout, Editorial Assistant
Dream Participants: J. Cole, Nas, Kanye West, Andre 3000, and Scarface.
Instrumental: Jay Electronica’s “Exhibit C.”
Staff Member: Shaheem Reid, Editor-At-Large
Dream Participants: Jadakiss, Lloyd Banks, Fabolous, Rakim, LL Cool J and KRS-One.
Instrumental: Raekwon’s “Verbal Intercourse.”
Who would be in your dream cypher? Let us know in the comments.