(AllHipHop News) One of the most anticipated and debated Hip-Hop magazine covers every year is XXL’s Freshman Class edition. The issue’s purpose is to highlight ten rising rap stars that have created substantial buzz over the previous twelve months.
Like with any subjective list there is the possibility that people will question why a certain artist was selected or omitted, and since it’s inception the Freshman Class cover is no exception.
Last year Azealia Banks was left off the cover and she took issue with fellow femcee Iggy Azalea being chosen saying that Iggy’s “runaway slave master” reference in one of her lyrics should have prevented her from appearing on the magazine.
Underground Kansas rapper XV take shots at the publication for what he felt was a snub from the 2010 issue.
Then there is the fact that Drake and Nicki Minaj, two of the biggest stars in music, were never a part of any XXL Freshman Class.
The controversial choices of this year’s class seem to be the “honorary” selection of Chicago rapper Chief Keef and the selection of relative unknown DMV emcee Logic.
[ALSO READ: Logic: Enter the Mind Of The Maryland Spitter]
MTV News spoke with XXL’s Editor-in-Chief Vanessa Satten about those selections.
On Chief Keef as the 11th class member:
We locked Chief Keef down as one of the first Freshmen, and that was back in October. There was no album, there was no jail bid, there was no legal drama. So that happened after we locked him down… We didn’t know exactly how much involvement we would be able to get from Keef once he was out, so we went with ten and in spirit kept Chief as part of the class.
On the fact that Chief Keef already has an album out:
I knew people would get on us if we included him based on the fact that he does have an album already… Sometimes rules are meant to be broken… People can get mad or tight but the circumstances weren’t like he could control what was going on, and we felt it was wrong for him to not be a part of that group.
I think that you guys are going to be surprised by some stuff with Logic. I think from the business deals and situations that he’s got going on that are unannounced… The world was open to Mac Miller, so I don’t understand. They’re not the exact same thing, but they go in a similar lane.
While XXL has made what some have felt were questionable choices for their Freshman Class lists, some notable Hip-Hop performers were also featured on the cover during their rookie seasons.
Lupe Fiasco, Joell Ortiz, and Crooked I were on the inaugural issue in 2008. Future stars Kid Cudi, B.O.B, and Wale were selected in 2009. In 2010 the standouts were J. Cole, Wiz Khalifa, and Big Sean. Kendrick Lamar, Meek Mill, Mac Miller, and B.I.G. Krit made the list in 2011, and last year’s crop included hit makers Macklemore, French Montana, and Future.
Along with Chief Keef and Logic, the rest of the 2013 Freshman Class includes Ab-Soul, Action Bronson, Angel Haze, Dizzy Wright, Joey Bada$$, Kirko Bangz, Schoolboy Q, Travi$ Scott, and Trinidad James.
[ALSO CHECK OUT: Behind the Scenes of XXL’s Freshman Class 2013 (VIDEO)]
You can watch a portion of the MTV interview with Vanessa Satten below.