It’s All In Your Mind…

I need to apologize for not already giving Ludacris his due in this column. Albeit, he did swagger jack Redman’s steez (as did Eminem) for the witty, unpredictable, wild shit. He also copped Redman’s acting bug as well. But after seven or eight studio albums that he has released I need to give Ludacris his props for doing his thing. Redman’s style was too wild to get a Grammy award. Ludacris smoothed that shit out and made it fly for the bitches.

Redman is like a White Owl blunt and a 40oz. of Olde English whereas Ludacris is like a thin-rolled joint with a glass of Alize. For those of you that were wondering, Eminem is a bong and a six pack of Stellas. There is nothing wrong with making rap music for the ho’s. Nelly been doing that shit all along and he can’t even rap. At least Ludacris puts some spit behind his booty shake anthems. How many times do you find yourself singing ‘Area Codes’ when you are around a lot of broads? I do that shit all the time.

So the question remains… Why isn’t Ludacris considered one of the best to ever do it? Redman either for that matter. Is it that punchline rappers aren’t given the same respect due as those rappers who practice braggadocio rap or the urban streets fiction rappers? Yet Eminem always finds himself in the conversation for G.O.A.T. status so style of rap shouldn’t be the focus. What is it about Ludacris that people don’t accept? I think it’s because he is a lousy actor.

Tupac was the greatest acting rapper, Raptor if you will, but he was a suspect rapper who lacked lyrical weight. His acting was so good that people actually believe he was a great rapper. Now here we have Ludacris who is light years ahead of Tupac lyrically but couldn’t act his ass out of a paper bag. This is why we don’t consider Ludacris’ lyrical greatness. If Ludacris were to stop acting for a few years I bet that rap fans would start to crown him one of the best ever to put it down.

Who in the southern rap region has sold more records than Ludacris? Not OutKast, Not Master P, certainly not Scarface. Not even Luke can make that boast. I know that record sales are a weak barometer for the supreme talent of an artist, but they do mean something. It has been the record sales that have convinced Hollywood to give this dude acting gigs with the anticipation that his audience would follow him from CDs to the screens.

I’m not saying that Ludacris is the worst acting rapper of all time. The W.A.R.O.A.T. would definitely have to be Jay-Z. NaS is horrible too. What is interesting to me now that I look at it is the better you are as a rapper the worse you will be as an actor. Now I do not want to see a movie with Joell Ortiz in it.

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  • Mas

    This post is stupid. Eminem>Redman>Luda. Eminem has the best albums. Luda has the worst. They all killed guest spots during their prime. Luda always finds a way to fuck up a good album. The whole middle of Theatre of the Mind sucks, bookended by the best shit he has ever done.

  • DJ Daddy Mack


  • og bobby j

    only burger ass flunkies see past luda….that nig a beast.

    Same for Redman…he nice like a mofo.

    Eminem is regarded as a GOAT cause he spits real hard…no homo. Plus, he broke the color barrier…like jackie robinson of Rap.

    I think most cats realize they dont wanna see any of those three on the mic.

  • Billy X. Sunday

    You flimsy wrist faggot. Go get your foot-long somewhere else.

  • Ivan

    “What is interesting to me now that I look at it is the better you are as a rapper the worse you will be as an actor.”

    I’ve gotta disagree with you there. Mos Def. Method Man. Tupac. All great emcees/rappers. All great actors.

  • Ivan

    Oh, and how ’bout Ice Cube, Queen Latifah and Will Smith.

  • render

    I remember some reviewer comparing Luda to Tracy McGrady back in 02′ when Tmac was looking like the best in the game. It was supposed to be a metaphor for how dominant Luda’s sales and presence was at the time. That comparison still seems valid since Tmac still aint won nothing and Luda still doesn’t have a classic album

    Eminem has 2 (3 dependin who you ask) and thats why he’s mentioned as a top 10 dude.

    Even Redman has Dare iz a darkside…i dunno what you internet bloghead critics think about it but for my money, that shit is certified classic material. I still got that album in rotation to this day

    Ludas dropped a couple of good albums, but nothing I would call classic. Closest he came was Word of mouf and that album has a whole gang of forgetable tracks.

    If Luda really wants to be in GOAT consideration, he needs to focus on putting together a timeless album. Like somebody here said, Theatre of the Mind came close because the best tracks on there are dope as hell but they’re right next to some hot wackness (that track feat. Plies produced by Swizz Beats is like a formula for wack)

  • Hate Hate and more Hate

    “Tupac was the greatest acting rapper, Raptor if you will, but he was a suspect rapper who lacked lyrical weight. His acting was so good that people actually believe he was a great rapper”

    LMAO – Naw his acting was so good niggas actually believed he was this super thug. But a few bullets put an end to that. LMAO. Then again his acting might have had nothing to do with it, it probably was his thugged out Aunt Jemima Bandanna, his tight ass Village People leather vest and his fruity ass nose ring that did it.

  • te noh

    Luda has not sold more records than Outkast.

    • Chris S

      probably cuz a lot of his best work is on guest verses.

      he’s been on more #1 songs than ANY other rapper.

      his delivery, flow, and metaphores/similes are amongst the greatest the game has ever seen

  • amar

    luda is one of theb est to ever rap and he’ll get his due when he retires

    i disagree with u on his acting. A lot of his roles right now are either some sorta criminal (crash), a rapper (hustle and flow) or a car nut (2fast2furious), but that’s just cause he’s starting out. Sure he’s playing himself, but besides 2f2f, i thought his acting in the other two mentioned roles was really good. I think he’s improving and will soon be a great actor.

    Let’s not forget that tupac studied drama at a top school

  • Parispolice

    So many things wrong with this post that I will just put them in point form to make it easier..

    1. Luda is a very good rapper and probably one o the best punchline rappers in the game , even though i think The Game is a better punchline rapper than him, so he’s GOAT too?..

    2. Luda has NOT sold more records than Outkast. That right there tells me your knowledge on album sales, rapper statuses, and anything that remotely has to do with the business in general. Outkast = Diamond status bud. check it.

    3. Luda a better rapper than 2pac? Are you nuts? Even though I really really do enjoy Luda’s flow, his word play and his delivery, 2pac out does him in all those categories. Listen to “Only fear of death”, God save the death, Ak47, and the list goes on. Mind you the time was completely different and “rapping” was completely different…but you can’t even put them in the same league.

    4. 2pac being an actor and tricking ppl into thinking he was a thug…dude thats such a bold retarded statement i dont even want to get into it.

    P.S. Can I write for XXL?

    • Hate Hate and more Hate

      “4. 2pac being an actor and tricking ppl into thinking he was a thug…dude thats such a bold retarded statement i dont even want to get into it.”

      Nope what’s retarted is pac actually doing that shit . . .scratch that. . .what’s retarted is niggas actually believing that homo was this dangerous thug.

      It’s very obvious that your a Pac dick rider getting homotional because I spit some real about that wack nigga. And you can save everybody time by not listing that niggas wack ass music too. He was a corny ass rapper, period!

      • amar

        well if u look at pac’s background in theatre, 2pacalypse now and compare it to everything after that, it’s obvious that he went from politically concious artist to gangster rapper

        whether its him being fake or gradually changing from his surroundings and fame, i dnot know…

        but i really think 2pac in his later days lived more of a gangster life while famous than most rappers today, with all the charges he picked up and everything. Not that that’s a smart or good thing. But still, i wouldn’t say he was acting.

        With that said, he def wasn’t a “dangerous thug” in any sense. He just hung around the wrong people.

        • Moi

          2pac shot two cops and he wasn’t even involved in the situation. Just to throw that in there. I don’t think he was acting.

  • El Tico Loco

    Luda’s the best balanced rapper out now. I wouldn’t say he’s the G.O.A.T. but he at least tries to cover all bases to the point underground heads and commercial heads don’t disagree much when it comes to his music he can get on a track by the runners or a primo beat and kill it. I must say he’s everything Busta Rhymes ever hoped to become.

  • Casey


    1. Game can’t rap.
    2. How much did ATLiens scan compared to Word of Mouf? Southernplayalisticadillacmuzik next to Word of Mouf? Or Idlewild next to Theatre of the mind? Way less, kid…
    3. Pac was a shitty rapper, period. That’s a whole nother debate though.
    4. Even Pac admits he wasn’t a thug. That’s not a bold statement, it’s known.


    And Billy, I think Redman should be on everyone’s Top 5. He’s my No. 2 after Ghost.
    Luda just lacks some sort of likeability though…idk what it is.


    Just to clear this up:
    Southernplayalistic… — 1,000,000
    ATLiens — 2,000,000
    Aquemini — 2,000,000
    Stankonia — 4,000,000
    Big Boi & Dre Present — 1,000,000
    Speakerboxxx/The Love Below — 11,000,000
    Idlewild Soundtrack — 1,000,000
    Back For The First Time — 3,000,000
    Word Of Mouf — 3,000,000
    Chicken & Beer — 1,000,000
    The Red Light District — 2,000,000
    Release Therapy — 1,000,000
    Theatre Of The Mind — TBD

    Do the math.

    As for Luda, I literally think people don’t take him seriously enough to be considered a G.O.A.T. Personality wise, he’s more of a jokester than Red or Em — at least they could convince you that they’d prolly murder you….

  • j.calderon

    I think it’s because he cut his hair. After he did that his image just wasn’t the same…neither was his music. He used to be consistent with hit after hit but then she started to slow up. He used to be the thugged-out looking skinny dude that refused to cut his hair like Michael Vick but now he’s all cleaned up and kinda boring.

  • j.calderon

    I meant “he started to slow up…”

  • capcobra

    in order to be a g.o.a.t…your career must symbolize the rise from your hood to superstardom…and in some cases you gotta fall off and climb back to the top…ludacris started with “what’s your fantasy” and he’s been successful ever since…so alot of us can’t relate or don’t know his struggles…to me going from radio dj to a hot mc isn’t the everyday hood story…it’s a good one tho’…but selling drugs.going to jail.carrying gunz.dropping outta school.battle rapping.pimping.robbing.having 2-3 baby mothers.or having 2-3 dead homies…etc…that kinda shit is more of a everyday hood story…and since luda don’t rep that he can never be a g.o.a.t….luda is in the same class as busta rhymes n fresh prince…he’s safe n successful…what more can a rapper ask for?

  • FlapJack

    Luda is top 15, maybe top 10. Not really that underrated I think.
    Billy you fucked up on this one. Facts WAY off. kind of makes you wonder what other stuff you just make up.

  • Incilin

    Dammit I hate it when my comments don’t post.

    Aite look, first off Outkast outsold Luda. Luda did like 13 his whole career and Outkast went diamond with Speakerbox/Love Below alone.

    Secondly, O’Shea and LL are both good actors (relatively) and GOAT rappers.

    Luda is a fairly good actor. He had the best scenes in Crash. And that was one of the best movies of that year.

    I’ve wondered many times why Luda isn’t a GOAT. My guess is that it’s because he’s an entertainer and not an “artist” Besides, dude never did anything to expand the genre beyond things we’ve already seen.

    Thank you for the LUda/Red Man comparasion. I’ve been saying that for years. And I love how Em is always the glitch in the Matrix who complicates every argument. He’s also a decent actor.

  • INcilin

    Also, how about this; Luda vs Jada! Who you got?

    Jada is always the most overrated GOAT (Dude has no classics) and Luda is prolly the one of the most underrated despite his long and successful run. BTW, when they went head to head (Made You Look remix) Luda won.

  • these posts are racist

    Luda sucks. His raps are not interesting/complex or even close to the GOATS: BIG, PAC, JAY and Em.

  • internet thug slapper

    Punchline rappers:
    Lil Wayne
    Lloyd Banks
    Young Jeezy

    Big L
    Big Pun
    Tech N9Ne
    Black Thought
    Big Boi
    (3000 IS A POET)

    That represents all coast and the difference is a few witty punches here and there and story telling or the actual words they used in their verses. If you rhyme shit with shit(LIL WAYNE) than I don’t want to hear anything you have to say EVER!!! As for Luda I been fuckin’ wit my nigga for years but he is still a punchline rapper. On the subject of pac I hope when you die that people actually give a fuck enough to even still mention you 12 years later. NO HATE JUST TRUTH

    • H-LO

      Big L WAS essentially a punch line rapper!

  • internet thug slapper

    Pretty much if you got big in your name you probably deserve it. Otherwise put the lil/young in front and keep it movin’. Also if anyone has a problem with what I said take it up with G-Unot Killa and the ECG-Unit Crips cuz I extorted his ass for his janitor’s salary. 1

  • mdb

    luda isnt one of the best because he’s just a comedian, he doesnt actually say anything in his songs

  • Omar

    I’m pretty sure Speakerboxxx/Love Below is pretty close to Luda’s total album sales.

    But the main reason, Luda isn’t mentioned as possible G.O.A.T is because half of his albums are average or worse and his best albums are just ok.

  • Billy X. Sunday

    Peep this funky shit…

    Ludacris has 15million sold.

    OutKast has 20million sold.

    Out of that 20m Outkast gets 2x RIAA credit for SpeakerBoxx/Love Below(10m) because it is a double album. Actually 5m units were sold mostly because of Howard Stern pushing ‘Hey Ya’ to death. Most of you humps don’t even consider that album Hip-Hop let alone rap.

    OutKast gets credit for Idlewild numbers as well?

    Guess what kids? Ludacris sold more than OutKast on the strength that he hasn’t even had to release a repackaged greatest hits to get his weight up.

    The final numbers are actually Ludacris 15m and OutKast 14m.

    Thank you and goodnight bitches

    • FlapJack

      That doesn’t make no sense. Outkast has 25 + sold. That 2x RIAA of 10 milli make 5 left.

      So Luda has 15, Outkast 20.

      And if for some reason Idlewild and that Andre and Big Boi presents-album doesn’t count, there is no way they shipped 10 combined.

      You need more people!

      • FlapJack

        Ha! I don’t make sense either. I meant 6 combined, which isn’t impossible. But still seems wierd..

        Luda’s second one was a compilation too, or more like he took all the good tracks from Incognegro..

        And double RIAA rating..might need some facts on that

  • Ali

    ok ima big Luda fan….Theatre Of The Mind was very good, but he’s not GOAT status yet….here’s why: this new album is his 1st album where I feel like he’s “arrived” if you will….that he finally made an album that we knew he could make all along……his old stuff is cool, but none of it stands out by album….its just fun singles to listen to….Release Therapy I thought was a growth, he was gettin there….with this new track he IS here……….I think GOATs have to have been “here” since day 1

    & also, better than 2pac? cmon buddy your pushin it….only Rakim is better than Pac

  • Shawty J

    Ludacris has been one of my favorite rappers since 2001. He has energy, punchlines, and he’s not afraid to experiment with style. He hasn’t made a classic album, but he’s shown improvement ever since his first album. I’ve kept Theater of Mind in heavy rotation ever since I got it, I had T.I.’s Paper Trail longer, and still I’ve listened to Theater of the Mind more than I’ve listened to that.

  • master cheef

    pac was everything you wish you was, nigga.

    the message he spread was from experience as opposed to drunken and high ramblings from a paranoid conspiracy theorist who doesnt even believe the stupid shit he say’s. when it sounds like he is making something up, and you wonder why, it is just to rile you up.

  • Billy X. Sunday

    Here’s what I’m gonna do for all you ‘Pac stans to prove my point once and for all.

    Give me ‘Pac’s best song. By your comments I will use that song in my cRap Music Analyzer [ll] and we will see where Tupac ranks among the greats.

    Ice Cube
    Kool G Rap
    Big Pun
    Andre 3K
    Big L

    That’s 13 artists right there. I bet Tupac doesn’t even crack Top 10. Let’s see if I’m wrong.

    • render

      fuck it…ill play along…check that “old school” joint off me against the world where he shows love to ny

      tho its pointless obviously since youre out to prove a point. Ill admit pac aint nowhere near the ghetto messiah prophet some of his stans think he is but fuck diminishing the man as an artist

      Ive seen niggas in the streets of Kingston and Sri Lanka rockin airbrushed pac tshirts (damn straight my game is international)…niggas in warzones vibe to pac.

      Actor or not, dudes message and music has a global impact that u cant compare with ANYONE in rap history…fuck a top 10 list.

    • tony grand$

      LMAO @ Sunday…….
      Couple cats said it best, Luda is safe, kinda boring, clean cut, basically lil more than a success story of a nigga who really wanted to get into music. No real relatable struggles, no wild stories, just a dude who kept tryin until somethin popped for him. I agree with every nigga who said it, that kinda shit don’t really qualify for GOAT status. I need a lil grit, lil grime, lil bit of dirt under a nigga nails to know that he really had to tooth & nail his way into position. He’s not my fav rapper, but I’m pretty sure he’s my fav rappers fav rapper. Top ten, mos defly, but number one spot (no pun intended), he’ll never be. The ppl have spoken.
      And why cats can’t talk about rap without bringin up Pac? Oy vey………

  • Pierzy

    What up BXS…

    Personally, I think one reason Luda doesn’t get the attention is because – until now – he hasn’t had a classic album. The album he won a Grammy for – Release Therapy – was garbage in my eyes. Great lyrics and concept, but not a great album. Theater Of The Mind, however, is an incredible album and one of the best of ’08.

  • Parispolice

    So we’re going to talk about his rapping skills or him as a rapper? Completely 2 different things.

    1. 2pac has and had more classics than Luda has or will ever have. Name 10 “classic” Luda tracks off the top of your head..its ok i’ll wait. He has been in the game longer than pac has too, so lets not compare him as an artist, or rapper per say. Thats like me saying, fuck biggie, he had 2 albums, how is he even nominated as the greatest rapper of all time..cause by your standards, that doesn’t add up and you’re “GOAT” analogy is and was completely wrong.

    2. you cannot compare someone like 2pac to common. The fact that you think they belong on the same list is ludicrous (no pun intended). Common raps at half the pace as pac, and is a completely different gendre of hip hop or rap. Story telling rap that pac had, good luck finding it in common..

    3. 2pac single handily changed the hip hop game in the mid 90s. The guy went to jail twice, shot 2 cops (apparently), got shot 5 times (thats the gangsta rap formula, getting shot), had the best dis song ever put on wax,(fuck ether and take over, those songs were jokes), and got murdered by gangbangers..and he’s not a gangster rapper? LOL

    you guys need to put down your lil wayne cds and stop dick riding on krs and LL..those niggas haven’t doen diddly in the last 15 years..

  • Parispolice

    BTW, nothing to take away from Luda, he’s one of my fav. rappers and he has raw talent behind the mic and his persona is great. Hence him landing big movie deals instead of LL, KRS, and half them niggas u put up there.

    I hate the majority of southern hip hop, but that’s my personal taste. Guys like Luda and Scarface are the true rappers from the south with real nothing taken away from him.

  • Billy X. Sunday

    I always give Tupac his due as a Hip-Hop personality, but for skills on the mic I tell people that he was lacking.

    I’m not surprised that Tupac has people wearing his image in foreign countries. If you live in the U.S. and you get spotted with a pair of Makaveli fake Air Force 1s on your feet you will get stoned (no Dutch Masters).

    I’m talking about skills here and nothing else.

  • Billy X. Sunday

    So then you agree that if Ludacris cloned himself he would be the greatest southern rap duo of all time?

    • Parispolice

      LOL Billy..

      Behind the mic? what are you exactly looking for? Rhyming the same word 100x and see who spits it faster and more clever? I don’t get what you’re trying to say. 2pac Had everything you need to be a succesful rapper like image, persona, cult following, more songs than half the south put together, and a legacy that few to no rappers really have.

      If you want to compare him to Talib or Biggy, ya its a different story. Its the style of rap that varies and you should (of all people) know that its a totally different ball game.

      P.S. I will never wear 2pac clothing cause i dont like baggy shit, thats right. I like tight jeans , im on that trend lol..and anyone i have seen wear 2pac clothing are ghetto ass kids who no nothing about this man

  • Gutta

    I think luda definitely has his place in hip hop history as a consistent artist but i dont think hes up there as far as one of the greats. im 27 and to me luda just doesnt compare to rakim, krs-one,scarface or even busta rhymes for that matter. But, the fact that an argument can be made says alot.

    i can see luda being 40 or 50 yrs old and still spittin some shit that will make you listen and thats why hes nice to me because for every rapper that talks about being the streets you need that artist that can make a club/party record.

    As far as the acting argument we all know that people arent actors just because there in a couple of movies. not every artist can be will smith, LL or even ice cube(who is the the most slept on artist/actor ever) but i think if u wanna talk about successful rappers luda definitely is one of the greats.

  • Gutta

    p.s. – you need CLASSIC ALBUMS to be mentioned with the GOATS which is why luda isnt there yet and why lil wayne has a long way to go.

    • H-LO

      Not necessarily: Big L seemingly made it without an exceptionally good album. He was one of the greatest talents, sure, but that sadly wasn’t coined into a classic. Lifestylez was basically his street battle repertoire put over fake songs. So if you’re interested in lyricism you’ll find boatloads of hilarious lines (albeit of very dark humor and questionable content) delivered with a flawless massacre flow, but as a music album Chicken and Beer is three times more enjoyable.

  • BGZ

    Ive been a Ludacris fan for long. He brings the fans of lyricism and the stripclub crowd together.
    I don’t think any of his albums lived up to his talent – too many guest appearances and shitty producion at times, – but I’d listen to them over 99% of today’s rap output.
    BTW Sunday, if I were you I would trademark ‘raptor’.


    Damn — tell niggaz to do the math and they still can’t add… [*smh* @ Sunday]

    Ludacris sales = 10,000,000+

    OutKast sales (net, without double album bonus) = 16,500,000+



    …. Oh yeah: I think Luda’s definitely raw, but I don’t really think he’ll be appreciated until he makes an album that meshes the “rap elements” (comedy/storytelling/harshness/partying) ala
    Ready To Die, Dare Iz A Darkside, The Marshall Mathers LP, etc.

  • Biz

    What about Andre 3k as an alright actor and lyricist?

  • Dwayne

    I agree with BXS…I most certainly think that Luda is one of the nicest lyrically doing it now. IMO his body of work speaks for itself. People probably only judge him from his “radio singles”. Also, I do think that Pac was overrated. Would this conversation be taking place if he didn’t die the way that he did? I’m not saying that he was totally gargabe, just not as nice as people would claim. I’m just saying….

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