shawnna

TOP 5 DEAD OR ALIVE: Shawnna

Shawnna loves Hip-Hop is ways the voyeur cannot fathom. So naturally she is concerned about pinpointing her Top 5 favorite rap artists.

“So I check ya’ll out all the time. I’m like on AllHipHop like everyday. And I was just looking at that Top 5, I think ya’ll did Nicki Minaj’s Top 5. It was like so many [reader] comments about her list. It’s like, that was her opinion. Why can’t people just respect that?” she says vigorously. “What do you mean, like Top 5 lyricists? Or Top 5 rappers? Now are we talking before the bling, or are we talking after the bling?”

When she talks about her favorite rappers, she goes every which way and feels remorse when she is unable to include certain artists. So, she genuinely wants to include every sector of Hip-Hop, including old School, New School, East, West, South, Mid-West, male and female. If there are others, she wants to include those too.

Shawnna was assured that, while she pointed out her Top 5 Dead or Alive, we’d give props to her other favorites as well. Note: the names in bold are her absolute Top 5. This is a bit erratic, but totally fun. Shawnna just loves Hip-Hop.

RAKIM

Shawnna: Definitely Rakim. Definitely Rakim.

AllHipHop.com: What about Rakim do you like?

Shawnna: Everything. Every song that he did. “Microphone Fiend,” “Move the Crowd” – everything he did was just lyrical. Everything. I mean he never stopped and then his delivery- his delivery stays the same, he never changed no matter what. And you know two turntables and a mic- that’s the birth of it you know. And I think Rakim embodies that.

KRS-ONE

Shawnna: I love KRS-One because of his positivity you know. Regardless of how many new rappers or old rappers come along, we need artist like KRS-One. It shows that we do have a mind frame, that we are educated. We need artists like that. So I say Rakim, then KRS-One, and then… I have to give my middle slot to a female. I have to put a female in it. I wouldn’t be right if I didn’t. Okay, let me see who is my most influential female? I mean I go back to Monie Love you know. It hurts to not even put them in the category…

AllHipHop.com: I’ll mention them for you.

Shawnna: Thank You! Of my time, my most influential woman was Lauryn.

LAURYN HILL

Shawnna: I have to because she can sing, she was positive, she wasn’t afraid to go there, she even changed her look- she didn’t blonde her hair, she never pulled her titties or her ass out because people felt like that’s what she had to do. She got on and off off of her lyricism and that is it. Her personality, her charisma, and I applaud her for that. For real. I look up to that so much.

BLACK THOUGHT

Shawnna: So then after… I have to go with Black Thought. I have to go with Black Thought because-

AllHipHop.com: Nice! I have to give you props for that!

Shawnna: Thank you! I have to go with Black Thought because you know he’s where I came from. When I was a shorty and I was on the Lyricist Lounge tour- The Roots was on it also, and he really pulled me to the side and was like “You really have something. What you’re doing…”. You know I can’t remember the exact words you know it was so long ago- you know Lyricist Lounge was like what ’98 ’99? But I had looked up to him. I had already been hearing him and then when he gripped the mic and the music came on it was like “Awwww.” So for him to pull me to the side and was like- I knew exactly who he was, you know he tried to talk like I didn’t know who he was. And when he said it I was like “No, I’m really going to be respected”. So yeah I have to go with Black Thought, I have to go with Black Thought. That’s Rakim, KRS-One, Lauryn, and Black Thought.

Shawnna: And then for my fifth- wow. My fifth… I have to go with- Oh it’s so many! Oh it’s so many, oh it’s so many, it’s so many. Because I mean now I’m going updated. I’m going into “right now,” who’s giving it to me right now in the past five years, and right now for me it’s between like- don’t you remember Ras Kass?

AllHipHop.com: Of course.

Shawnna: Let’s see who’s giving it now. Shit I have so many, I have so many. It’s so many that I want to give my best one to. Let me think right now. Who’s giving it to em’ right now lyrically like… You know, I f**k with Jadakiss – I’m sorry. Jada and Sheek. Like mother f***ers sleep so hard on Sheek Louch, it’s stupid.

AllHipHop.com: Yeah, you’re right.

Shawnna: You know they so sleep on him. People was like “What? Huh? Why?” but they sleep on him, that’s why you know.

Almost…made the list!

AllHipHop.com: Right, right. So Jada and Sheek? Or are you still thinking?

Shawnna: Yeah I have to go with Jada- I have to. I cannot leave my man out of my list. But it’s like people are going to be like “How could you put Jada and you didn’t put Biggie and Pac” you know what I’m saying. So…

AllHipHop.com: Oh, don’t worry about that.

Shawnna: I’m not worried about it, but I just really want people to understand where I’m coming from. It’s like so many different categories of it, but at the end of the day, I’m a lyricist, and that’s what Jada is. He’s just not a rapper to me. Jada can go with some of the heavies and keep going.

AllHipHop.com: And he has. I mean you have to look at it. He’s been down with everybody from DMX, to Biggie, to Jay-

Shawnna: Oh my God! I have to give my fifth one, I have to keep true to where I come from and say Redman. I’m sorry.

REDMAN!

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AllHipHop.com: Okay. Redman.

Shawnna: That’s my one, Redman. Yup, that’s my one. But I don’t know, I don’t want to say Redman before Jada. What do you think I should do? What do you think I should do? I should put my Jada on there shouldn’t I? Jada gon’ be out of no where on that list though.

AllHipHop.com: Right. I have flags for Redman. I personally have flags for Redman you know. I can’t tell you what to say because that’s on you. That’s what the list is for, it’s your list. I put Redman a bit above Jada because of his album qualities you know what I’m saying. He holds a little bit more consistency on the album side. Jada’s always been consistent lyrically, but you know that’s just me.

Shawnna: What about Kool G Rap?

AllHipHop.com: That’s my favorite MC ever.

KOOL G RAP

Shawnna: So yeah put Kool G on there because that’s my favorite too.

AllHipHop.com: Okay. So what about G Rap is it that you like?

Shawnna: Oh that’s when I was a shorty. That’s when I was first getting introduced to it when you had the Rob Bass “It Takes Two” and then it was like-Oh god, Kool G Rap… I’m going to tell you like this because he was a dope lyricist, but he didn’t just go off that he gave you concept. Like that “I Shot The Sheriff,” you know what I’m saying, he gave you concept and he was a dope lyricist. That’s what I see in Ludacris.

That’s why Ludacris is one of my favorite rappers now amongst your Gucci Manes and stuff like that. I like Gucci, but can you put Gucci and Luda in the same category? No, but I still f**k with him though, I still f**k with Gucci Mane. Stupid ass, hood n***a [rap] – he got it. He is it. Like that stupid, dumb, hood n***a, you might not even- that might even be a word. But he swag’d it out so good, that it sounded good.

AllHipHop.com: Yeah they did a song together so I guess it worked some how.

Shawnna: Yeah they did a song for the Battle of the Sexes album (with Ludacris). Yeah Gucci’s featured on one of his songs. Yep. But that will be my list, so you gotta check me out. My list came out to be Rakim, KRS-One, Lauryn Hill, Black Thought, and Kool G Rap. Yep.

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