Joe Budden – Green Lantern Freestyle


With all the shenanigans Joe Budden has gotten into in the past few years, it’s pretty easy to forget that he is a rapper first. It’s funny to make fun of him for his multiple “Ls.” He’s dealt with allegations, meltdowns, controversies, etc. His trials and tribulations have been mocked.

Throughout all that, people seem to forget that Budden can rap his ass off.

Even in the present, with all the distractions including the Drake beef and the car chase incident, people do not give the man credit. They are quick to point at his issues and irrelevancy than the music itself. The rapping part should be the most important thing, not the other stuff. That stuff is microscopic. Unfortunately, that’s not how it works in today’s world.

It’s unfortunate because Budden is an amazing rapper. He’s one of the very few rappers who let’s his fans know everything about him. And I mean everything to the point where you might feel uncomfortable. Other times when he isn’t being too personal, he’s showing off his cleverness, wit and dope metaphors.

So with all the bullshit going on, I decided to highlight one particular day.

On March 20, 2007, Budden was a guest on DJ Green Lantern’s Shade 45 radio show.

After an interview, Green Lantern decides to throw on the beat to Rich Boy’s “Boy Looka Here,” a monster beat from Polow da Don.

Budden starts vibing. Next, thing you know Budden just goes off and delivers an onslaught of metaphors galore.

The underlying theme of the freestyle is that Budden is a dope rapper. All those metaphors were about him being better than other rappers. Within the first ten bars, he tells us that his pen game cannot be fucked with, while dissing other rappers (no names) in the process claiming that their raps are elementary, and anyone could write them. He compares his greatness to others in other fields. He’s Tiger Woods and Kobe Bryant.

He summarizes his greatness in one perfect line.

Budden raps, “I’m the only thing that keeps getting better the longer you leave it on the shelf.”

He does two things in that metaphor, he briefly reminds us that his album’s been shelved, and that he’s remained hungry while working on his craft and delivering mixtapes in the process. Shit, during his time on the shelf, he delivered some amazing work, exhibit A and exhibit B.

The freestyle is memorable because it mentions a range of topics including an early hip-hop meme.

The “oh you mad ‘cause I’m stylin’ on you” meme was both huge and hilarious in the hip-hop forums world. I thought it was hilarious. It went viral. Someone even broke down a second-by-second play-by-play of it. Watch the video, you will see the dude’s green hat do a 360-degree turn. Hilarious.

Listen to the freestyle and get amazed by this lyrical exercise, and remember Budden is a lyrical monster, so don’t get it confused.

(Photo credit: Joe’s Instagram)


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