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Blue Card Era

I was reading Sickamore’s post yesterday about the ’70s baby executives that ruined hip-hop, and it got me to thinking: Say what you will about these d-bags, but they sure made a shitload of money! You’d be hard-pressed to find any of us ’80s babies who’ve come anywhere close to the level of a Jay-Z, P Diddy, or even an Irv Gotti. I wonder if this will continue to be the case.

After all, it’s not like we’re getting any younger. I recently hit the point where I’m officially closer to 30 than I am to 20, and I’d be lying if I said I had much to show for it other than an insane tolerance for alcohol. Some website called the Panache Report, which looks like it might be in the business of running hoes (I’m so not making this up) recently published a list of the 10 richest people in hip-hop, and there wasn’t an ’80s baby to be found.

Peep the list:

  1. P. Diddy, $346 Million
  2. Jay-Z, $340 Million
  3. Russell Simmons, $325 Million
  4. Damon Dash, $200 Million
  5. Neptunes, $155 Million
  6. Dr. Dre, $150 Million
  7. Ice Cube, $145 Million
  8. Eminem, $110 Million
  9. 50 Cent, $100 Million
  10. Nelly, $60 Million
  11. (Tie) Jermaine Dupri, $60 Million

Thoughts on the list:

  • Unless I’m mistaken, Fiddy is the youngest person on the list, having been born in 1976.
  • You’d think that Jermaine Dupri would have more money considering a) he had hits out when he was like 19, and b) he produced the top-selling albums of both 2004 and 2005.
  • Dre, Em, and Fiddy are worth way less than Diddy, Jay, and Dame, despite the fact that Aftermath artists move way more units than anyone on Bad Boy or the Roc.
  • Obviously, the best way to make a shiteload of money in hip-hop is to have a successful clothing line. Nevermind rap music.
  • I like how they never bother to include the tall Israelis who actually own the labels and clothing lines that these d-bags appear to own and/or run.

Someone with both the tools and the talent would be well-served to create a list of the 10 richest ’80s babies in hip-hop, but you’d have to think such a list would pale in comparison to the overall hip-hop money list, which is comprised entirely of ’50s (Rush ’57), ’60s, and ’70s babies. If I had to guess, I’d say T.I., who was born in 1980, is probably the richest member of our little gang.

[Speaking of which, Lil' Wayne wouldn't be on our list, because apparently he was born in 1979.]

Which begs the question: Why is it that the generation of kids born 10 and 15 years before us is doing so much better than we are? Even by the time they were the same age we are now (i.e the mid ’90s), they were already that much further along in their careers.

Could it be the case that we lack the drive to succeed: While they were putting out classic albums like Ready to Die, Reasonable Doubt, and Illmatic, we’re just slapping our names on a mixtape of other people’s shit and/or talking shit about people on the Internet?

Or could it be the case that the ’70s babies just so happened to come along at a time when hip-hop was hitting its peak: Can you really blame us if the best rappers out these days are derivative no-talents like Rick Ross, Saigon, and Papoose – all of whom, it’s worth noting, were born in the 1970s?

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