Ja Rule once picked his four favourite rappers of all time
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Ja Rule once picked his four favourite rappers of all time

Queens emcee and star of Murder Inc, Ja Rule, was a hip-hop star during the late 1990s and early 2000s. The lyricist (real name Jeffrey Atkins) dominated the charts at the turn of the millennium, and with hits such as ‘Always On Time’ and ‘Mesmerize’, the musician was unstoppable.

With his R’n’B-infused songs featuring Ashanti and Jennifer Lopez, he was a king at one point. However, as his beef with 50 Cent began to drag on, by the mid-2000s, Atkins had become irrelevant while his Queens counterpart was flying high with albums such as The Massacre, Curtis and Before I Self Destruct.

Since then, Atkins has been involved in various endeavours. In 2016, he co-founded Fyre Media, the company that attempted to hold the catastrophic Fyre Festival that saw thousands of ticket-holders defrauded by the rapper’s business partner Billy McFarland. In 2023, he then launched his own wine brand, Rose Vine Cellars.

However, Atkins often visits popular hip-hop media outlets and radio shows to promote his business ventures. That said, in 2022, following the launch of his live-streaming app Iconn Live, the ‘Caught Up’ musician swung by The Breakfast Club to talk music and business.

During his conversation with hosts DJ Envy, Charlemagne Tha God and Angela Yee, Ja spoke about the different generations of hip-hop and, while doing so, talked about some of his favourite artists of all time.

When asked about who would appear on his Mount Rushmore of hip-hop, Atkins reflected on how hard it is to pin down his favourites, responding, “It’s tough. Because it’s eras, you know what I mean?”

Adding that two prominent Brooklyn legends have to appear on the list, Atkins continued, “If I just had to do four. You would have to put Jay on there. I would put Pac on there. B.I.G. gotta go on there.”

Ja was still determining who he was going to give the last slot to. However, he unveiled that he would have to go back to the 1980s or 1990s, stating, “I would go with older school guys. Like either Big Daddy Kane, or Rakim, or KRS because of what they did for the culture, and what they meant to the culture.”

Speaking about the impact the figures had on the culture, Atkins continued, “What Rakim was to a Nas, you know what I’m saying? What KRS was to a whole generation of rappers. Kane was the first n*gga I seen like, ‘This n*gga is fly, this n*gga get all the bitches.'”

He concluded by praising some of the cultures female MCs who often get overlooked, saying, “But you know what? We never put the ladies in there. Come on, man! MC Lyte, Queen Latifah, Salt-N-Pepa. They are the reason other women picked up a microphone, period. How can you leave them off? You gotta tick one of them and put them on there.”

You can watch Ja Rule’s appearance on The Breakfast Club in the video below.