The art of the Mixtape; a medium that is not quite an album and not quite an EP. The mixtape can be a collection of random songs/freestyles, or a well thought out project. The 5 mixtapes below are projects that changed the game and influenced the culture of hip-hop.
5. Live Love ASAP
Whether you are a fan of ASAP Rocky or not you must admit he brought a unique sound to the game that many try to emulate to this day. In 2011, ASAP Rocky dropped a mixtape that sounded like a mixture between New York rap, Houston chopped & screwed, with a little bit of trap thrown in the mix. The result is a mixtape that sounds fluid, trippy, and amazing from start to finish. The game new ASAP Rocky was here to stay after this one.
4. Kush & OJ
Before Wiz Khalifa hit the radio, he was putting out mixtape after mixtape of crack. Kush and OJ was the last mixtape he put out before he got "on". Classic samples, groovy tempos, smooth hooks, and some weed raps made this mixtape a classic (arguably Wiz Khalifa's best work). In an era where everyone was struggling to make trap songs and trying to mimic the down-south sound, Wiz stuck to his sound and dropped a project that effected a whole generation. Now the same can't be said for Wiz, but thats beside the point. This project showed everyone that if you do what you love and make what you want, it will be respected (as long as your actually talented of course).
3. So Far Gone
So Far Gone is the mixtape that launched Drake to super stardom. But it's not just the Lil Wayne, Trey Songz, and Bun B features that gave Drake that lift to fame; it was the whole project that let people know Drake was ready. On this project, Drake mastered the rapping/singing formula on pretty much every track. The mixtape had a dreamy feel and made you want to reach success as much as Drake wanted to. So Far Gone was definitely a game changer as it introduced the R&B sound in a different type of way.
2. Drought 3
Bars, bars, bars; Weezy came with them on this mixtape and gave people a reason to say he was the best rapper alive. Lil Wayne hopped on different artists beats and completely destroyed them to the point you didn't want to hear the original. Weezy was spitting more metaphors and puns than we could keep up with, and it sounded amazing. To this day I still wonder how Lil Wayne hasn't run out of things to say.
1. Trap or Die
There is not much that needs to be said about this mixtape, except that it's a street and hip-hop classic. If it wasn't for Young Jeezy and this mixtape there would be no Rick Ross, Gucci Mane, or any trap rappers. Jeezy brought drug rap to the scene and it would never be the same after this.