By Ryan Asselin
Many rappers claim to be from the streets, but Brandon McCartney, better known to his fans as Lil B or “The Basedgod,” truly did live in and overcome a life of struggle. He has been arrested numerous times, influenced by the gangs, guns and drugs that plagued his younger years.
The rapper began as an Internet sensation with songs like “Ellen DeGeneres,” “I’m Paris Hilton” and “Swag Like Ohio.” He raps in stream-of-consciousness form, saying what’s on his mind and turning that into a song from the one or two lines he thinks are good.
In many of his early, more successful songs, he compares himself to celebrities and repeats the same verses.
To be fair, many of his songs that became popular did so as a joke.
There is a select group of rappers that many refuse to listen to—Chief Keef and Waka Flocka Flame are examples—and Lil B is almost always included in that group.
After hearing the more popular songs by Lil B, many feel they would be wasting their time listening to his other songs because they believe it will just be more of the same.
Aside from his underground cult-like following, Lil B, sadly, is never given the benefit of the doubt.
Not many musicians of any genre produce more music than Lil B, who has more than 2,000 songs under his belt so far at the mere age of 23.
With albums under the name Lil B and The Basedgod, along with the new mixtapes he releases seemingly every other week, Lil B obviously loves music. He has released classical music albums as well.
Despite his massive volume of songs, rapper and producer Lil B only recently earned my respect as a musician. With the release of his Glassface mixtape, Lil B’s flow was better and more consistent, the written lyrics were meaningful and deep and the beats, as usual, did not disappoint.
On Glassface, Lil B shows the public a side of himself that his audience had only caught glimpses of until this point.
He truly is the “rawest rapper out,” with lyrics about a life he really did and, at times still does, live. When you look through history, the best writers—from Ezra Pound to Charles Bukowski—lived a life of struggle that informed their art.
It may have taken some time for Lil B to polish his talents, but he is definitely evolving into a true musician. Lil B is the most underrated rapper in the music industry.