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XXL NEWS HIGHLIGHTS ’08: Akon Says T-Pain Best Hook Man Of All Time: “I Don’t Think Nate’s Any Competition To What We’re Doing Right Now”

[Editor’s Note: With the new year around the corner, looks back at some of our greatest stories and video features of 2008.]

Akon is one of three crooners to have held hip-hop’s hook man crown since R&B hooks became the norm in the 90s.

Nate Dogg, Kon and his protege T-Pain, have all taken turns as the hook man du jour -seemingly establishing a monopoly on rap hooks during their respectives reigns. While Nate, the senior of the group has been hooking rappers up for 16 years, Kon thinks he’s no match for what he and Pain have been doing the past few years.

“I mean it depends on what you consider to be a hook man,” Kon told “Nate, I don’t think he’s any competition to what we’re doing right now. The West Coast, which was incredibly hot, there wasn’t nobody touching Nate Dogg at that time. I was around at that time. It wasn’t no getting through them doors.

“Nate had it locked down,” Kon continued. “But I think as time started changing, I slowly took over because I came with more than just a hook. I came and gave you the song itself. When you came to Akon for a record, you’ll get the record, you’ll the track, you’ll get the song and the concept for it.”

But when it comes down to best hook man off all time, Kon gives it up to his own signee, T-Pain.

“If I had to give it personally to anybody, I would give it to T-Pain,” Kon revealed. “I always looked at him as someone that can add a lot of color to someone’s record. I do it a lot of different ways, but I’m always thinking business when I’m doing it. Pain is doing it for the fun of it. I strategize differently. I do it according to what territories I need to take over. Pain does it just cause he loves to do it.” –Marvin Brandon

Also make sure to check out theurbandaily’s Top 10 Hip-Hop Singers’ list.

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