Rockin’ gay apparel, them jeans will make you sterile,
I’m steady stockin ammo, cocking the double barrel.
Yo Premier, why these rappers so soft?
They corny ass raps be makin me doze off.
Every little fuck up, they blame it on Barack
Cause he just like Gucci, born in the trap.
But some find happiness while others find sorrow,
And what’s here today, may be gone tomorrow.
There’s a whole lot of questions that really need answers
Like: Who the fuck told you that your rhyme style was hot?
You know when Biggie died? Who bust that shot?
Why is Sammy Bull still living, and where the fuck is Pac?
We in the 25th hour,
It’s now or never.
We gotta get it ‘fore it’s gone forever.
In the end, time waits for no man…
What’s your plan?
Too much weak talk, and not enough real hip-hop.
Guru, “Watch What You Say,” Jazzmatazz Volume 2: The New Reality, 1995
Got a freaky, freaky, freaky-freaky flow, Control the mic like Fidel Castro.
– Jeru Tha Damaja, “Come Clean,” The Sun Rises in the East, 1994
Rap is an art, you can’t own no loops.
It’s how you hook ‘em up and the rhyme style, troop.
So don’t even think you could say someone bit
Off your weak beat, come on, you need to quit.
Guru, “Take it Personal,” from Gang Starr’s Daily Operation, 1992
Life’s a bitch, who are we to judge each other?
I know I got faults, I ain’t the only muthafucka.
– Guru, “No Shame in my Game,” from Gang Starr’s Daily Operation, 1992
I just want to innovate and stimulate minds,
Travel the world and penetrate the times,
Escape through rhythms,
In search of peace and wisdom.
I never want a jheri curl up under my hat,
The woman in my bed has got to be strictly black,
I never want money if my lyrics are wack,
So I must…rock…the mic.
It’s the message in the song that makes you rock on,
Some people go to places where they don’t belong.
Whether wrong or right, a lot of people fight,
But I’m here to bless this mic, aight?
They say it’s lonely at the top, in whatever you do,
You always gotta watch motherfuckers around you.
Nobody’s invincible, no plan is foolproof,
We all must meet our Moment of Truth.
Guru, “Moment of Truth,” from Gang Starr’s Moment of Truth, 1998
I don’t know why y’all so highly regarded;
You rhyme like you’re borderline mildly retarded.
I’m a true master, you can check my credentials
Cause I choose to use my infinite potential.
I’ll never understand why a wack rapper tries and
Convinces himself that his image is so fly and
That’s the type of crap you know I’m not buying…
Chumps lack the beats and their rhymes don’t apply.
Through every ghetto I carry the heavy metal,
Just in case a shovel is needed when arguments are settled.
“All I see is blinking lights, track boards and fat mics. 950s, SP-12s, MPC60s…”
– A.G., “Next Level,” from Show & A.G.’s Goodfellas, 1995. DJ Premier closes down the legendary D&D Studios (aka HeadQCourterz) today and migrates to Kaufman Astoria Studios in Queens. The recording den, where Rakim, KRS-One, Jay Z, Nas and Gang Starr made some of hip-hop’s most canonized songs, will come to a close in 2015 due to new building ownership.
How you looking like beef jerky, beefing in every verse,
But never beefing in person? Randy Savage.
You wouldn’t snap a Slim Jim,
You wouldn’t rip a wrapping on Christmas in Santa’s attic
With the hands of Eddie Scissors…ain’t you average?
I start thinking:
How many souls hip-hop has affected?
How many dead folks this art resurrected?
How many nations this culture connected?
Who am I to judge one’s perspective?
This is for my bitches in the shelters that don’t need shelter, you just doin’ that shit for a crib.
And all my bad little bitches, when your baby father hits you, stick a ice cold knife in his ribs.
And all my bitches pimp the system, get your WIC, tell your workers, “Fuck that,” you gon’ have more kids.
And you ain’t have ‘em cause you need ’em, but now you gotta feed em, so you figure that your ass gon’ strip.
Brooklyn: the home of the black and the beautiful.
For a rough rap sound, ain’t a place more suitable.
Lyrical lecture, word architecture,
Rap director, the best in my sector.
Microphone cool chief, releasin the smooth speech…
I get nasty with a pen and some loose leaf.
I been drunk most my life, don’t ask me why.
Through ninth grade, I ain’t go to high school,
…I went to school high.
Believers of Jesus be denouncing Satan on every level,
But every Halloween they’re dressin’ like devils.
I’ve been layin’, waiting for your next mistake,
I put in work, and watch my status escalate.
A lot of rappers be like one time wonders,
Couldn’t say a fly rhyme if there was one right under their noses…
I hate those motherfuckin posers.
The mind is a terrible thing to waste.
I show love cause it’s a terrible thing to hate.
Real, rough and rugged, shine like a gold nugget,
Every time I pick up the microphone, I drug it.
My sense of self and my mental health
Is much more powerful than any hint of wealth.
Yo, it’s 1 universal law but 2 sides to every story,
3 strikes and you be in for life, mandatory.
4 MC’s murdered in the last 4 years,
I ain’t tryin to be the 5th one, the Millennium is here.
Yo, it’s 6 million ways to die, from the 7 deadly thrills,
8-year olds gettin’ found with 9 mill’s.
It’s 10 P.M., where your seeds at? What’s the deal?
Rappers spit rhymes that are mostly illegal,
MC’s spit rhymes to uplift their people.
Telling my business to kids I don’t even know,
You’re like a daytime talk show…and that’s low.
Fake MC’s – they always act hard
But won’t walk the streets without their bodyguards.
Rappers can’t sleep, need sleepin’,
B.I.G. keep creepin’,
Casualties need treatin’,
Dumb rappers need teachin’.
What’s the remedy? Suckaz better get their own identity,
And to the enemy, you better roll like there’s ten of me.
Tell ya mama to stop flirtin’ boy, I’m not a good step-pop.
I interrupt your little session…and wreck shop.
Lemonade was a popular drink and it still is;
I get more props and stunts than Bruce Willis.
Too many MC’s take that word ‘emcee’ lightly;
They can’t Move a Crowd, not even slightly.
According to Guru (RIP): “Streetwise poetry and turntable wizardry.”- from “Flip the Script,” off of Gang Starr’s Daily Operation, 1992