Chance the Rapper, Creek Boyz, DJ Khaled, Justin Bieber, Lil Uzi Vert, Lil Wayne, Mike Jones, Nef the Pharoah, Pollari, Quavo, Sage the Gemini, Slimmy B, SOB X RBE, TCTS, YFN Lucci, Yhung T.O, Yung Cat
Top 10 Songs May 2017
It’s late in the month but still in time for May, so as I patiently (or not so patiently) wait for Chief Keef’s long-awaited ‘Thot Breaker’ album (which I’m very hopeful will be a seminal addition to his catalogue) to be released, here are my top 10 songs for May 2017 with mostly current songs and one or two suprising throwbacks and outliers.
Creek Boys – With My Team
Creek Boys made a late charge to come out of nowhere and win the crown for top song in May right at the end of the month; see my full article about this ridiculously catchy/infectious song with a nice message here
DJ Khaled ft. Justin Bieber, Quavo, Chance the Rapper, Lil Wayne – I’m the One
Only the most hardened of cynics or someone who just wants to hate could say they’re not down with this global smash hit by Khaled and some of the biggest names in rap music and beyond. I feel like this song also really solidifies Quavo’s place as a superstar in the genre in his own right. See my full article on ‘I’m the One’ here
Nef the Pharoah ft. Slimmy B – Bling Blaow
‘Bling Blaow’ off of Nef the Pharoah’s excellent Chang Project album is definitely one of the hardest songs I’ve heard in a while. I love the aggression of the chorus and the way the beat hits, plus the hard as nails verses from Nef and his fellow Vallejo native Slimmy B (of SOB X RBE). There are almost too many awesome, brutal punchlines to choose from but to narrow it down to a top 3 I particularly liked ‘Icy neck full of rocks/this b*tch I wear would make the Titanic stop”, “My neck is on loud, your neck is on SHUT UP” and the almost impossibly obnoxious “Twinkle twinkle punk ass star, how come your diamonds don’t hit that hard? My sh*t hit like a pimp hits his broad, my sh*t hits like the bass in a car.” I also love how far they take the arrogance of mocking rivals for wearing fake chains and ones they buy at the mall, you almost feel like Nef is personally offended by their brokeness.
TCTS ft. Sage the Gemini, Kelis
I feel like this is going to be a big hit this summer. I wasn’t expecting to ever post one of these house/rap hybrids in my top 10 lists but the beat for Do it Like Me/Icy Feet is just too good and it’s so catchy; I love Sage the Gemini’s contribution to the verse/chorus which really brings the whole song together. “Women, money, I’m just on it. You ain’t like me I’m just honest. Parked the Bentley than I locked it.”
Lil Uzi Vert – XO Tour Llif3
Man the wierdly but interestingly spelled ‘XO Tour Llif3’ by Uzi got big; this ‘video’ for it, which isn’t really even an actual video more just a wierd cartoon of him driving and holding (but not smoking?) a blunt already has about 150 million views in just about 2 months. The strangely catchy and compelling ‘Push me to the edge, all my friends are dead’ chorus reminds me more of an emo or goth/pop punk band than what we’d typically expect from a rap chorus, but for whatever reason it really works, and I guess Uzi is sort of the equivalent of a modern day rock star at this point so it makes sense. I didn’t love this the first time I heard it but by the time I heard it a few times and it grew on me I was blasting it on repeat.
Polari – Lil Elroy Jetson
“I be hot like the Sun, balling for fun. Fendi the belt it hold the gun.” Polari went space age on us with ‘Lil Elroy Jetson’. I just wish this 1:40 gem of a song was a little longer! I could have picked a couple of other Polari songs for this list too, like Speedin or Run, but settled on Lil Elroy Jetson as my choice for May. See my previous article on it here.
YFN Lucci – Way Up
‘Everyday We Lit’ with PNB Rock gets the most airplay off of YFN Lucci’s solid ‘Long Live Nut’ mixtape, and is a great song, but my personal favorite and the one I had on repeat the most was the excellent ‘Way Up’.
Yhung T.O. – Love the Way
Great month for members of SOB X RBE’s solo work, with Slimmy B getting on this list with his verse on the Nef the Pharoah song, and this great song from Yhung T.O’s debut solo project. See my previous full article on ‘Love the Way’ here.
Yung Cat – 2 Chop Stickz
Special thanks to The Martorialist for introducing me to Yung Cat and this jam. Yung Cat is an artist that would definitely be getting a lot more attention if he was located somewhere like Atlanta, NYC, Chicago or the Bay etc than in Kansas City. He really has a gift for simple, stark/bleak but catchy melodies, for example, I really like when this song over the B.O.B. 4 Lit beat sort of changes it’s tone and picks up at around 1:13.
Mike Jones – Back Then/Mike Jones – Flossin’
On a long 4-5 hour drive for work I ran out of new things I wanted to check out and randomly decided to listen to Mike Jones ‘Who Is Mike Jones’ album from 2005 since it was a favorite from high school, and I was actually shocked by how well a lot of it still holds up today. I feel like a lot of people kind of dismissed Jones as a one hit wonder or didn’t take him seriously as an artist and found his success to be more ‘gimmicky’ but Flossin’ really was a masterpiece and Back Then goes hard AF, if nothing else you just have to respect the guy’s hustle he basically just used pure willpower and determination and saying he was a star, to fulfill the reality and become a star, however briefly. I love how hard the beat and chorus for ‘Back Then’ goes as well as the message, and I feel like quite a bit of the material on ‘Who Is Mike Jones’ doesn’t sound too out of place side by side with today’s hip hop music. Other songs like ‘Turning Lane’ and of course the well-known ‘Still Tippin’ on this ablum were also great. I also delved into his second album ‘Running for President’ when I was finished and it didn’t have quite the same level of classic hits but wasn’t bad. My main takeaway with that one was the sheer audacity of having a 50 minute freestyle/posse track with basically every rapper in Houston at the time on it. I’m not sure what Mike Jones is doing now but 10+ years after Who Is Mike Jones was released, I think it’s time that he gets a little more credit for this classic album.