Genre Series: 15 Rap Songs You Shouldn’t Miss from 2012

Of course Detroit’s finest Big Sean is on the list…

So along with my Grammy nomination prediction/analysis series, I am examining memorable songs that I have encountered throughout the year in various genres. To start the series off with a bang, I’m initiating with one of the most ‘colorful’ genres, rap.  With Rap music, you just never know what outlandish lyric will captivate or how much the minimalist synths within the production might get stuck in your head. 2012 has yielded some unique songs for sure…

15 Cuts You Should’ve Heard

Nas featuring Rick Ross, “Accident Murderers” (Life Is Good)


Signature Nas through and through, Nas delivers a message about people who murder others but really don’t understand the ‘scope’ of what they are doing.  He goes so far to say clever lines like “…your guns is virgin… you just an accident murderer…” The Boss (Rick Ross) adds his two cents in.

Kanye West, Pusha T & Ghostface Killah, “New God Flow” (Cruel Summer)

Cruel Summer

Brilliantly produced and incorporating numerous samples, “New God Flow” found Kanye West working his magic in the studio.  Pusha T is on autopilot while the added verse by Ghostface Killah seals the deal.

Macklemore & Ryan Lewis, “Thrift Shop” (The Heist)

Who would’ve thought that a thrift shop song would be so clever. Macklemore delivers quite the catchy, creative cut in “Thrift Shop,” a single from Lewis/Mackelmore‘s new album Heist, which bowed October 9th.

Kendrick Lamar, “Swimming Pool (Drank)” (Good Kid, m.A.A.d City

Kendrick Lamar’s upcoming Good Kid m.A.A.D City

A song sure to get the best of ’em wasted, “Swimming Pool (Drank)” is one of the more clever rap songs of 2012. Odd ball Kendrick Lamar manages to cohesively string everything to be about alcohol.

DMX featuring MGK, “I Don’t Dance” (Undisputed

An underrated comeback cut for DMX, the


veteran MC holds it down on this club cut and gets a strong assist from up and coming MGK,  who just released his debut album October 9th (Lace Up). DMX‘s most recent studio album (Undisputed) debuted at no. 19 on the Billboard Albums Chart.

2 Chainz featuring Kanye West, “Birthday Song” (Based on a T.R.U. Story)

2 Chainz

One of the more wacky, though addictive songs from 2012 was “Birthday Song,” yet another cut that seems almost blasphemous to what ‘birthdays’ are all about.  “They asked me what I do and who I do it for/and how I come up with all this sh*t up in the studio/all I want for my birthday is a big booty ho/all I want for my birthday is a big booty ho” 2 Chainz boasts (seriously) on the hook.  Kanye West adds a bit more intelligibility, if you can on such a silly though guilty, addictive pleasure…

Kanye West, Big Sean & Jay-Z,  “Clique” (Cruel Summer)

Another superb cut off of West’s G.O.O.D. Music Cruel Summer compilation, “Clique” blends three of today’s hottest MC’s for nothing short of a killer track.  Big Sean‘s hook is simple, blunt, and addictive.  Additional Sean, West, and Jay-Z all deliver superb verses.

Nicki Minaj featuring 2 Chainz, “Beez In The Trap” (Pink Friday: Roman Reloaded)

NIcki Minaj

Quite divisive by any means, Nicki Minaj’s “Beez in the Trap” definitely receives notoriety if for nothing more than its raunchiness.  “B****es ain’t shit and they ain’t sayin’ nothin’/a hundred motherf**kers can’t tell me nothin’/I beez in the the trap, be-beez in the trap…” – yeah you get the idea.  The video is even worse… It definitely captured everyone’s attention…

Rick Ross & T.I., “Bury Me A G” (MMG, Self Made 2…

Rick Ross…yep sans the shirt…

With relatively simple though malicious production, Rick Ross delivers one of the better tracks of 2012 with “Bury Me A G.” “If I die tonight I pray I get buried in clean draws/lines us all up just bury me with my dawgz…Bury me with my dawgz/bury me with my dawgz…”

Rick Ross, Dr. Dre & Jay-Z, “3 Kings” (God Forgives, I Don’t)

God Forgives, I Don’t

One of many solid tracks off of Rick Ross’s no. 1 album God Forgives, I Don’t, All three MC’s live up to the name of the cut, easily.

Kanye West, Big Sean, Pusha T, 2 Chainz, “Mercy” (Cruel Summer)

One of 2012’s most popular rap tracks, “Mercy” is notable for nothing else if for the indecipherable sample that has been bumping in cars all summer… what a ‘cruel summer.’

Meek Mill featuring Drake, “Amen” (Dreams & Nightmares)

One of the year’s most anticipated albums hasn’t even been released yet, from none other

Meek Mill is one of the years hottest MC’s

than Maybach Music‘s Meek Mill, who seems to deliver on every cut he is on… “Amen” is no different, particularly since it lifts off of Michael McDonald. 

Nas featuring Swizz Beatz & Miguel, “Summer on Smash” (Life Is Good

A different sound for Nas, “Summer on Smash” gave the intellectual MC a cool clubby track to shine on.  He gets a boost from Swizz Beatz and the up-and-coming R&B star Miguel. 

Slaughterhouse featuring Swizz Beatz, “Throw It Away” (Welcome to Our House

Slaughterhouse, Welcome to Our House

Arguably the best track from Slaughterhouse’s no. 2 bowing Welcome to Our House, “Throw It Away” is one of the years strongest rap cuts.

Maybach Music Group, “Power Circle” (MMG, Self Made 2…

The opening cut for Self Made 2, “Power

Gunplay is featured on “Power Circle.”

Circle” may be a near 9 minute juggernaut, but that’s not necessarily a bad thing in this instance.  Well produced and featuring excellently penned verses, “Power Circle” is powerful.  In the video however, we could do without Ross’s shirtless-ness. #NoSwag

Also Check Out: 

2 Chainz & Drake (“No Lie”)Rick Ross & Omarion (“Ice Cold”); Tyga featuring Busta Rhymes (“Potty Mouth”); MGK featuring Lil Jon (“Lace Up”); b.o.b. (“Ray Bands”) 

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