DJ Mike Biggz on Monday, Jun. 4th
It can be hard enough for the average kid to follow in his parents’ footsteps. But what if your pa or ma dukes is a hip hop icon? Those Adidas might become a bit difficult to fill.
The children of hip hop superstars are coming out of the woodwork with material, with different levels of success. Some are signed and releasing albums, some are unsigned and releasing mixtapes, while others are working on developing their craft and hoping to get their careers off and running. Arguably, it’s an inventive way for these rappers to extend their personal brands, not to mention the family fortune.
One major factor that these offspring all have in common is these kids didn’t grow up in the same neighborhoods or faced the same hardships as their parents. Does this lack of “street cred” affect their raps? Or will this new generation gain respect based on good old fashioned skill? Here is a rundown of who’s blowing up and who to watch out for as a new generation of putative stars spins out a new sub-genre of “mini-me” rap.
Diggy Simmons (Son of Rev Run/RUN-DMC)
Diggy’s debut album “Unexpected Arrival” is appropriately titled. I sure didn’t expect Diggy to be the one to blow up the way he has with his super soft hit single “Do It Like You.” Run-DMC’s reign preceded the existence of gangster rap, but the music was considered hardcore in the mid 80s. The reverend is best known by this generation for “Run’s House”, Rev Run’s reality series on MTV. We all watched Diggy grow up privileged so any subject matter from him that sounds remotely street would immediately be dismissed. I’m not saying Diggy needs to rap about the streets, but if at the very least his lyrical ability was vicious, then the hardcore heads, new and old school, could take him a bit more seriously as an MC and not a fluffy bubblegum rapper.
The barely legal emcee did manage to get into his first rap beef with Roc Nation signee J Cole, who threw a couple of light jabs at Diggy on a mixtape. Why J Cole is picking fights with kids I don’t know, but I do give Diggy props for standing up for himself and not taking J’s disses lightly. I applaud Diggy’s effort but after hearing his “battle raps” vs what J Cole had to say, it’s like a kitten fighting a pillow. With youth on his side and a hit song under his belt, Diggy has plenty of time to home his skills and prove himself.
OMG (Son of Ice Cube)
Not sure why any rapper would call himself OMG. But then again back in 1986-87 I’m sure Ice Cube probably got a few “WTFs” for his name. Oh My Goodness released his debut mixtape “Jackin’ For Beats”, a title that pays homage to one of his father’s greatest songs. As for OMG’s rap skill, he’s not quite there yet. OMG’s voice is a little similar to his dad’s, but the intelligent aggressive rhymes that made Ice Cube the respected and feared emcee he is, have not been evident in OMG’s music, yet.
Sun God & Infinite Coles (Sons of Ghostface Killah)
It was only time before one of the seeds of the Wu would come up. Sun God, Ghostface Killah’s oldest son, made his first appearance on GFK’s “Fish Scale” album series. His voice, unlike his dad’s signature semi-squeaky, hyper sounding one, is more along the likes of Styles P. Aside from a few guest appearances, we haven’t heard too much from Sun over the years. We’ve yet to see a mixtape, street album or single from Sun yet.
Then we have GFK’s youngest, Infinite Coles, who stirred up a little controversy among hip-hop’s hyper masculine homophobic henchmen over his sexuality. Regardless of his sexuality, the kid can sing and sounds like he’s well on his way to developing into a promising R&B star.
Droop-E (Son of E-40)
Droop-E is by far the most talented and most promising of the bunch. Son of Bay Area rap icon, E-40, Droop-E has had the privilege of witnessing everything you need to know on how to make it in the rap game by watching his father rise from local hip-hop celebrity to national force to be reckoned with. He made a couple of appearances on wax in the 90s, but really came into his own in the early 2000s as a producer. He’s managed to produce several hits for Bay Area artists, his father especially, and even produced for the likes of Nelly. His production discography for someone his age surpasses a lot of veterans. And he also gained some attention for producing an album of all Sade samples for the clothing company Blvck Scvle. “I’m Loaded” is still my favorite to this day. If Droop-E breaks the curse of being trapped in the Bay, he’ll be one of those “go-to” producers everyone wants to make their hit single.
Cori B (Daughter of Snoop Dogg)
Snoop Dogg’s baby girl Cori B, was introduced to us on Snoops’s reality show, “Snoop Dogg’s Fatherhood” and is cute as a button. She in the last couple months released her first single “Daddy’s Girl.” I think she needs to hold off until she’s older and can sing about something that doesn’t sound like it’s tailor-made for the Disney Channel.