Eminem, Three 6 Mafia, And Lil B Have The Most Drug References In Their Lyrics In Hip-Hop
Eminem, “Careful What You Wish For”Producer: Eminem
Lyric: “The Marshall Mathers was a classic, The Eminem Show was fantastic/But Encore just didn't have the caliber to match it/I guess enough time just ain't passed yet/A couple more years that shit'll be Illmatic”
Why It’s Dope: Eminem is talking about how his albums are rated by critics. He knows that his previous albums have been rated high, but critics weren’t as generous with his Encore album. What Eminem is saying here, though, is that after some time, when critics go back to re-rate it, they will rate it on the same level as Illmatic, which is synonymous of a classic. It’s safe to say though, even after a few years since rapping that line, Encore isn’t in the same stratosphere as Illmatic.
A recent study done by Project Know - an organization set out to promote "the understanding of addiction" made several charts in reference to the "Number of Rap Songs Mentioning Drugs." These charts analyzed the amount of drug references made by your favorite rappers.
"Drug mentions in Rap lyrics have been enormous is quantity and explicit in quality since the genre’s earliest days," the organization says. "From sale to use and even overdose, Rap verses reflect the history of drug culture. But how has the relationship between drugs and Hip Hop changed over the years? Are today’s emcees still rhyming about the same substances as popularized in the 1980s? Which drugs have faded like fads, and which continue to bounce with the bass of every generation?"
A bevy of rappers were included on the list and were placed under different categories. Three 6 Mafia ranked number one for "Weed" references. The following rappers included Anilyst, The Roots, Afroman and Fashawn. For Cocaine, Lil B took the cake, followed by Atmosphere is #2, G-Unit #3, Death Grips #4 and Ice-T. Eminem was number one in the pharmaceutical department.
Project Know explained how they developed the list by saying:
"This project gets its data from RapGenius, which gives the prevalence of phrases in rap music over time. Prevalence in this context is the total number of rap songs containing a given phrase in a year divided by the total number of rap songs in that year. We have opted to leave out certain substances and slang phrases to prevent our results from being skewed by slang phrases that are often used in other contexts. As an example, heroin is commonly referred to as 'boy,' but the word 'boy' is also used in a variety of contexts that have nothing to do with heroin."