What Is Jay-Z's Best Album?

Categories: Rap Round Table

Some rappers happen to be thoughtful, intelligent people. Every Monday that isn't a national holiday, Rocks Off will have some of them here discussing issues relevant to their culture.

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Photo illustration by John Seaborn Gray
This Week's Panel: Bun B, Slim Thug, Z-Ro, Chingo Bling, Chane, Pyrexx, Renzo, hasHBrown, Doughbeezy, Kyle Hubbard, KAB, more.

Not Invited: Beyonce. Because she was busy taking it to Mars.

This Week's Prompt: So, Jay-Z's The Blueprint is now 10 years old. A chance for you to music-nerd out, then: What is Jay-Z's best album and why?

Bun B: The one with me on it [1999's Vol. 3: The Life and Times of Shawn Carter]... cuz I'm on it.

Z-Ro: I've never listened to a whole Jay-Z album before. No disrespect.

Slim Thug: Blueprint, to me. I still listen to it. Played it today.

Chane: Vol.2: Hard Knock Life. That album marked a huge transition in Jay's career. It was his claim to the king of New York since Big passed. Commercially, successful and it had one of hip-hop's biggest tours ever. That was a classic time period for Jay.

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Chingo Bling: When Reasonable Doubt dropped, it fit into my tamale-slangin' lifestyle... put it on and got to cooking.

Pyrexx: It don't matter. All of them went platinum. That speaks for themselves. J is the truth.

Mic Skills: The consensus is The Blueprint, which is great, but I think The Black Album jammed from beginning to end. Every song was epic, back to back. Beats and rhymes were hot, hooks were great. "Dirt Off Ya Shoulder"; "99 Problems"; etc. Classic.

Renzo: I fux wit American Gangster; very, very tough. He embodied the character very well and it flowed perfectly. Everything except "Hello Brooklyn." It seemed very out of place.

Hollywood Floss: It's a tie between Reasonable Doubt and Blueprint. I like Reasonable Doubt's lyrics, but Blueprint's music.

Doughbeezy: The Blueprint.

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Gregory Green
Gregory Green

Have to go a little off the cuff here and say that "Unplugged" was his best album. There is just something about having the Roots back him.  If you don't count that one, it definitely goes Blueprint then RD.


Hollywood Floss gave the correct answer.

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