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Is Hip-Hop Sleeping on Plies?

In the midst of Weezy mania, the industry failed to recognize another impressive release. The same day that Lil Weeziana dropped Tha Carter III, the homie Plies dropped his sophomore joint, The Definition of Real. And while he didn’t do D’Wayne numbers, to date Plies moved just about 300,000 units. That ain’t exactly small change.

Now the haters will detract I’m sure, but the boy from Ft. Myers, Florida is quite ill. The real problem is that most hip-hop heads made an initial judgment on dude without ever actually listening to his music. (It’s the same thing with Lil Boosie, but props to the homie Brian “B.Dot” Miller for opening up my eyes- BOOSIE gets the stamp!) You want that street shit? Plies got it. Check “Chopper Zone” back from his mixtape days or “Goons Lurkin’” from his first album. You want political rap? Check “Bid Long” or “100 Years” and then try to front like that ain’t no Dead Prez type shit. We already know dude runs radio with joints like “Shawty” and “Bust It Baby Pt.2,” but what’s most impressive is Plies ability to relate to everyday folks. On “1 Day” off the new album, Plies talks about wishing that he could resurrect his deceased homie just so he can take him to the daycare to see his son play one last time. On “Somebody” he flips Patti LaBelle’s “Somebody Loves You,” but instead of turning it into a sappy love song for chicks, Plies dedicates the jam to the incarcerated scarfaces of the world. “Worth Goin Fed Fo,” is another deep track where dude spits, “ I dunno if 25 years worth 2 years of ballin’/That’s a big pill to take and I ain’t tryna swallow it.”

Now when it comes to lyrical miracles, Plies ain’t seeing the likes of Joell Ortiz, Lupe Fiasco and Crooked I. Hell he probably ain’t even seeing Rick Ross. But when it comes to writing songs that connect with people’s everyday lives, very few current rappers can fuck with homie. Pac wasn’t as lyrical as Biggie, but did that make him any less great? Some would argue that Pac’s sincerity and ability to speak to the streets made him better than B.I.G., but that’s a topic for another post.

Everyone measures an MC by the bars that they spit, but what about overall song writing ability, does that not count for anything? I know the masses will hate, but how many folks have actually took the time to LISTEN to Plies? The dude is sayin’ some shit! —Rob the music editor

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