From about 2009 up until now, Drake has arguably had the best run that a mainstream rapper has ever had. Even though he’s never really had a “critically acclaimed” album, you can’t deny his songwriting ability and his ear for a hit.
When Drake first broke out into the mainstream, he wasn’t taken much serious. The game wasn’t used to a hybrid rapper like Drake yet.
A couple of years later, you could’ve easily said his “style” had changed the whole industry. Rappers finally weren’t afraid to hit a high note, or show emotion behind their tough exterior. Instead of him just being known as Lil Wayne’s little brother, he had carved out his own space in the game and let it be known that he wasn’t going anywhere.
Then, the ghostwriting thing happened.
Still, he really took a big hit to his ’emcee’ credibility after the rumors came out. In the eyes of real hip-hop heads, having a ghostwriter is a forbidden rule. Especially if you claim to be in the ‘Top 5 Greatest Rappers’ debate (I.e. Drake’s “Top Five” claim on “Grammy’s”
Also, Drake is not as usually as dominant as he was in his earlier career on the charts. Besides him scoring his first number one hit, “One Dance”, he hasn’t really had any songs that were able to climb up the charts, which is something Drake definitely isn’t used to.
And of course, I couldn’t write a Drake article without bringing up his lowkey arch-rival, Compton rapper Kendrick Lamar. K.Dot has always been right behind (some say neck and neck) at the conversation for best rapper alive. Which, I believe, is what the rap game and the culture in general. In the words of the great Joe Budden, “Rappers are making fast food music nowadays”. There aren’t many rappers today who can solely rely on their lyrical ability. Rap is all about melodies and catchy flows. Combining that while still using meaningful lyrics is a hard talent to find. Especially when they do it at high rate consistently.
But Drake probably couldn’t have any cares in the world right now. He’s achieved so much mainstream and pop success, that it’s kind of impossible for him to fail. But most importantly, Drake should never be disrespected for his rapping ability. Drake made his own lane and then made his impact it a staple in the rap world.
The only doubt Drake has recently been that his music hasn’t really grown or changed over the years and became stagnant. Or, at least that’s what he wants you to think…