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Greatest Rapper Alive First Round Match 14 - Kanye West vs Too Short
View Poll Results: Who will advance?
Kanye West 9 81.82%
Too Short 2 18.18%
Voters: 11. You may not vote on this poll

 
 
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Old 11 Jul 2008, 06:25 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Greatest Rapper Alive First Round Match 14 - Kanye West vs Too Short

Kanye West



Kanye Omari West (pronounced /ˈkɑnjɛj/; born June 8, 1977)is an American rap artist and hip hop producer. He released his debut album The College Dropout in 2004, his second album Late Registration in 2005, and his third album Graduation in 2007. His first three albums have received numerous awards (including nine Grammys), critical acclaim, and commercial success. West also runs his own record label GOOD Music.West's mascot and trademark is "Dropout Bear"," a teddy bear, which has appeared on the covers of his three albums as well as the singles cover for his songs "Stronger" and "Homecoming.

West's parents divorced when he was three years old, and he and his mother moved to Chicago, Illinois. He enrolled at Chicago State University but later dropped out to continue pursuing his music career. He later gained fame by producing hit singles for musical artists including Jay-Z, Alicia Keys, and Janet Jackson. West's style of production often utilizes pitched-up vocal samples, usually from soul songs, with his own drums and instruments. Some controversy has also surrounded West, such as an incident during a live telecast of a benefit concert for Hurricane Katrina relief, when he deviated from the script and told the audience, "George Bush doesn't care about black people."

Kanye West was born in Atlanta, Georgia, where he lived with both of his parents. When he was three years old (as mentioned in "Hey Mama") his parents divorced, and he and his mother moved to Chicago, Illinois. His father was Ray West, a former Black Panther who was one of the first black photojournalists at the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, and is now a Christian counselor.[10] West's late mother, Dr. Donda West, was a Professor of English at Clark Atlanta University, and the Chair of the English Department at Chicago State University before retiring to serve as West's manager. He was raised in an upper-middle-class background, attending Polaris High School in suburban Oak Lawn, Illinois after living in Chicago.

West took some art classes at the American Academy of Art, a Chicago art school, and also enrolled at Chicago State University, but dropped out due to poor grades and a primary interest in working on his music career. While attending school, West produced for local artists. He later gained fame by producing hit singles for major hip hop/R&B artists, including Jay-Z, Talib Kweli, Cam'ron, Paul Wall, Common, Mobb Deep, Jermaine Dupri, Scarface, The Game, Alicia Keys, Janet Jackson and John Legend among others. He also "ghost-produced" for his mentor Deric Angelettie, according to his song "Last Call" and the credits of Nas' "Poppa Was a Playa."

West's style of production often utilizes pitched-up vocal samples, usually from soul songs, with his own drums and instruments. The first major label song he produced was The Truth by Beanie Sigel, and his first major release featuring his trademark vocal sampling style was "This Can't Be Life," a track from Jay-Z’s The Dynasty: Roc La Familia. West said he sped up the drum beat of Dr. Dre's "Xxplosive" to use as a replacement for his drums on "This Can't Be Life."

West has said that Wu-Tang Clan producer RZA influenced him in his style, and has said on numerous occasions that Wu-Tang rappers Ghostface Killah and Ol' Dirty Bastard were some of his all-time favorites. Said by Kanye West: "Wu-Tang? Me and my friends talk about this all the time… We think Wu-Tang had one of the biggest impacts as far as a movement. From slang to style of dress, skits, the samples. Similar to the [production] style I use, RZA has been doing that."

On October 23, 2002, West was involved in a near fatal car crash while driving home from the recording studio. The crash provided inspiration for West's first single, "Through the Wire." West's faith is apparent in many of his songs, such as "Jesus Walks," which became a staple at his benefit performances, such as the Live 8 concert. These songs were featured on West's debut album, The College Dropout, which was released on Roc-A-Fella Records in February 2004, and went on to receive critical acclaim. The album also defined the style for which West would become known, including wordplay and sampling. The album went certified triple platinum. Guest appearances included Jay-Z, Ludacris, GLC, Consequence, Talib Kweli, Mos Def, Common, and Syleena Johnson. The album also featured the singles, "All Falls Down" and "The New Workout Plan," as well as Twista's single, "Slow Jamz."

West was involved in a financial dispute over Royce Da 5'9"'s song "Heartbeat," produced by West and released on Build & Destroy: The Lost Sessions. West maintains that Royce never paid for the beat, but recorded to it and released it; hearing him on the beat, the original customers decided not to buy it from West. After the disagreement, West vowed to never work with Royce again.[22] Other Kanye West-produced hit singles during the period The College Dropout was released included "I Changed My Mind" by Keyshia Cole, "Overnight Celebrity" by Twista and "Talk About Our Love" by Brandy.

On August 30, 2005, West released his second album Late Registration. Reviews were mostly favorable, with Rolling Stone commenting that "Late Registration is an undeniable triumph,"and with Spin mentioning it is "As ornate and bloated as West's ego."With the help of producer samples in different ways along with compositions of strings and other sounds, the record earned the number one spot on the Village Voice's Pazz & Jop critics' poll of 2005. The first two singles from Late Registration were "Diamonds from Sierra Leone" (which features vocals from Shirley Bassey's "Diamonds Are Forever") and "Gold Digger" featuring Jamie Foxx, (which contains an interpolation of Ray Charles's "I Got a Woman"). The album sold over 860,000 copies in its first week, and earned eight Grammy Award nominations including Album of the Year and Record of the Year for the song "Gold Digger."The album also included "My Way Home," a track that sampled Gil Scott-Heron's mournful "Home Is Where The Hatred Is." The album is certified triple platinum.Guest appearances include Lupe Fiasco, Jamie Foxx, Adam Levine, Paul Wall, GLC, Cam'ron, Common, Brandy, Nas, Jay-Z, Consequence, The Game, and Really Doe.

In September 2005, West announced that he would release his Pastelle Clothing line in spring 2006: "Now that I have a Grammy under my belt and Late Registration is finished, I am ready to launch my clothing line next spring." The current status of this project is unknown. In that year, West produced the hit singles "Go" by Common and "Dreams" by The Game.

In 2007, it was announced that West would be starring in a series directed by Larry Charles. He has been working on the pilot episode for the past two years with Larry Charles and Rick Rubin. He also had this to say on January 14: "I wouldn't do something as cliché as a reality show. At least give me the credit for being more creative than that. It's a situational half-hour comedy. It's fictional, and loosely based on my life." West recently collaborated with Japanese hip hop group Teriyaki Boyz to produce the single "I Still Love H.E.R.," a reference to Common's 1994 single "I Used to Love H.E.R.." It is rumored that West's introductory lines preceding his verse are a thinly-veiled jab at producer and rapper Danny!, who was mercilessly compared to West in the beginning of his career

Further to this, during a radio appearance in early 2007, West, like many of his peers, recorded an impromptu freestyle to the popular song "Throw Some D's." West's version became extremely popular because of the different stance he took. The song that to all other rappers was about automobile rims, was used by West to comically refer to D-cup breasts. Because of the unexpected success of the song, West went on to make a video for the freestyle, in which he is seen playing his 'Old Ass Cousin.'

West was also featured in a new song called "Classic (Better Than I've Ever Been)." It was believed to be a single from his upcoming album, Graduation, because he is featured on the track, but Nike quickly explained that it was for the Nike Air Force 1's anniversary. It was meant only to be an exclusive track for the company.

On March 25, 2007, he and his father Ray West supported World Water Day by having a "Walk for Water" rally. After a two-year break, West has returned to being a fashion columnist in lifestyle magazine Complex. On July 7, 2007 West performed with The Police and John Mayer at the American leg of Live Earth. West hosted the August 17 edition of British comedy-variety show The Friday Night Project.[48] In May 2007, West split from long-time model girlfriend Alexis Rainey.

In July 2007, West changed the release date of Graduation, his third album, from September 18, 2007, to the same release date as 50 Cent's album Curtis, September 11, 2007. 50 Cent later claimed that if Graduation were to sell more records than Curtis, he would stop releasing solo albums. However, 50 Cent would later dispel his comments. The album has been certified double platinum. Guest appearances included T-Pain, Mos Def, & Lil Wayne.
“ When I heard that thing about the debate, I thought that was the stupidest thing. When my albums drops and 50's album drops, you're gonna get a lot of good music at the same time. ”

Like its predecessors, West's Graduation contained extensive sampling of music by eclectic and often obscure artists, including "Champion," taking its hook from a snippet of Steely Dan's "Kid Charlemagne," and "The Glory," which uses as its foundation Laura Nyro's "Save the Country." On August 26, 2007, West appeared as himself on the HBO television show Entourage which he used as a platform to premier his new single "Good Life" during the end credits. In September 2007, West suggested that his race had to do with his being overlooked for opening the MTV Video Music Awards in favor of Britney Spears; he claimed, "Maybe my skin’s not right."On September 9, 2007, West performed at the 2007 MTV Video Music Awards. On that night, he lost all 5 awards that he was nominated for, including Best Male Artist and Video of the Year. After the show, he was visibly upset that he had lost at the VMA's 2 years in a row, stating that he would not come back to MTV ever again. He also appeared on several radio stations saying that when he made the song "Stronger" that it was his dream to open the VMA's with it. He has also stated that Britney Spears hasn't had a hit in a long period of time and that MTV exploited her for ratings.

Following the MTV stint, West was nominated in 8 Grammy Award categories for the 50th annual Grammy Awards. He won four of them, including Best Rap Album for Graduation and Best Rap Solo Performance for "Stronger" from Graduation. During the four-hour televised Grammy Awards ceremony, West also performed two songs: "Stronger" (with Daft Punk) and "Hey Mama" (in honor of his recently deceased mother).

Kanye West and designer Alex Phifer ended their 18-month engagement in 2008. The couple had been dating on and off since 2002, with Kanye eventually proposing in August 2006. According to a friend, the couple's relationship had been straining, significantly influenced by the sheer amount of time and attention West was dedicating to his current concert tour. "Its always sad when things like this end, and we remain friends," Phifer told People.

On April 16, Kanye kicked off the Glow In The Dark Tour in Seattle at the Key Arena. The tour, which ends in June in Cincinnati, features three opening acts: Lupe Fiasco, Rihanna, and N.E.R.D. Kanye is now supported by three times DMC World Champion: DJ Craze after his usual tour DJ: A-Trak decided to take a break to focus on his solo career.

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Too Short



Todd Anthony Shaw (born April 28, 1966), better known by his stage name Too Short (seen on album covers as Too $hort), is an American rapper who started his career at the age of fourteen in Oakland, California.

Shaw was born in South Los Angeles, California, and raised in East Oakland, California during his teenage years. In the early 1980s, Short produced custom raps (called "special requests") for people with his high school friend, Freddy B. In 1983, Too Short released his first album, Don't Stop Rappin', on the local label 75 Girls. This and his next three releases featured raw, simple drum beats using a LinnDrum drum machine in the early 1980s, switching to mostly the TR-808 and TR-909 by the mid-to-late 1980s. In 1986, Too Short and Freddie B. founded the Dangerous Music record label to distribute his music regionally.[1] Dangerous Music later changed names to Short Records, and then Up All Nite Records. With his 1988 release, Life Is...Too Short, he began infusing replayed established funk riffs (rather than samples) with his beats. It was then that he began to develop a noticeable fan base and a string of platinum albums.

Too Short's songs are principally recognizable for their emphasis on Pimpin' and related sexually charged topics. With the rise of gangsta rap in the late 1980s/early 1990s, his style found a natural place in mainstream rap. Too Short's popularity peaked in the 1990s with Short Dog's in the House in 1990 and Shorty the Pimp in 1992. The latter included songs such as "No Love from Oakland", "Hoes," and "Step Daddy," all of which deal with his exploits as a pimp. While "macking hoes" was a common topic in other gangsta rap of the time, particularly the popular rap put out by Death Row Records, it should be noted that Too Short lacked certain thematic elements associated with the genre. His work chronologically straddled the rise and decline of gangsta rap, and never really dealt with guns, killing, drugs, or gangs, but rather focused on the lifestyle of a pimp, the music industry, and sex. Indeed, his lyrics often criticize crack cocaine users, and Too Short only rarely uses the word "Nigga."

Subsequent work including Get in Where You Fit In (1993), and Cocktails (1995), dealt with similar issues. He retired from full-time solo rap with the 1996 release of Gettin' It.

Subsequent work was primarily collaborative, including work with Diddy, The Notorious B.I.G., Scarface, UGK, Jay-Z, and Snoop Dogg. He appeared TWDY's hit single "Player's Holiday" from their 1999 debut album Derty Werk[3] as well as the Priority Records compilation Nuthin but a Gangsta Party. After these appearances, he began working on his eleventh album, Can't Stay Away. The album included guest appearances by 8Ball & MJG, Jay-Z, Jermaine Dupri, Sean Combs, E-40, Daz Dillinger, Lil' Jon, Soopafly, Scarface and B-Legit. Too Short relocated to Atlanta in 1994, but he really didn't begin working with a more diverse variety of southern artists until 2000 including Lil Jon. In 2004, "The Ghetto" appeared on popular videogame Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas, playing on West Coast hip hop radio station Radio Los Santos.

Although he is not usually considered a true gangsta rapper because the topics covered were almost solely about sex and rarely touched on other aspects of the "gangsta" lifestyle, Too Short nonetheless had influence in early and modern gangsta rap. Too Short's songs had a great influence on Ice Cube's (rapper and songwriter for N.W.A) early writing. [6] Following his relocation to Atlanta, he worked with a variety of snap and crunk artists. While most older rappers from the late 1980s-early 1990s (the so-called Golden age of hip hop) have criticized those genres for their lack of lyrical complexity or content, Too Short has been one of the few active in that time to embrace the new styles. Too Short has influenced many rappers who claim themselves as a pimp such as Snoop Dogg. Because of Too Short's normal rap topic of pimpin', he isn't credited with making uplifting, positive and political songs. Though he has made several songs encouraging people to survive, stop drug use, not to be a gangster and getting money. His flamboyant use of the word "Bitch" (pronounced as BeeITCH or Biatch) that he has used since "Don't Fight the Feeling" has been picked up and emulated by various other rappers (and popularized in the mainstream by Snoop Doggy Dogg) and was turned into a popular slang vernacular used in other mediums, such as radio, television, and movies. Other artists have gained much influence from his lyrics which include E-40, Rappin' 4-Tay, Mac Mall, Lupe Fiasco, The Dogg Pound, Lil Wayne, MC Eiht, Spice 1, Eminem, Young Buck, Turf Talk, 50 Cent, UGK, T.I., Dem Hoodstarz, The Pack, The Luniz, Richie Rich, Ludacris, and among countless others. For his last albums Too $hort collaborated with many Southern Rap artists, included Lil' Jon. That gave a new Dirty South and Crunk sound to his works. some of his greatest influences are Run Dmc and The Jackson Five
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Old 11 Jul 2008, 08:01 PM   #2 (permalink)
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I know West will wins...but I voted for my favorite Too $hort...
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Old 12 Jul 2008, 06:09 PM   #3 (permalink)
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I went with Kanye.

His complete arrogance irritates me but I still enjoy his music.
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Old 12 Jul 2008, 07:29 PM   #4 (permalink)
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I'm going to pull a Ginocan, and pick Short, eventhough I know West is winning. I like Ye, but Short's Cocktail album is awesome, hell his whole catalogue up until Getting it was awesome. Ye has made a bigger impact, but it all comes down to who's music I enjoy the most, and that is Short Dog.

This was my hardest match up so far.
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Old 13 Jul 2008, 12:24 AM   #5 (permalink)
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I like both, but Kanyes the better rapper.
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Old 13 Jul 2008, 12:01 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Kanye will now move on to the next round.

Thanks to those that voted.
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