It was around 2008. During this time you were seeing the snap music era fade away. Wayne was on top of the world with Carter 3. Jeezy dropped arguably his greatest work. Kanye West probably had no clue what his album in 2008 would do for the future of hip-hop. Miami hip hop was booming and while all this was going on there was an artist under the radar who NO ONE noticed.
He was like a shinobi in the night. No one seen him coming. I guess you could say he was blue collar. He just put his head down and worked while avoiding the industry. He dropped 7 mixtapes in one year and no one gave a fuck except his core fans which included myself. That legend goes by the name of Curren$y The Hot Spitta.
Elsewhere in the world there was another man who was going through somewhat of a rebirth. He traded in his hard traditional east coast flow and switched to a mellow and sometimes hype delivery and dropped a key mixtape that people look over. That mixtape was the start of his heavy weed raps and showed his ability for crossover appeal. That mixtape is called “Star Power” and that man name is Wiz Khalifa.
I’ll let those legends tell you how they met but they linked up the following year 2009 and created in my opinion a top 5 all time mixtape in hip hop history titled “How Fly” and when it dropped it was like this silent explosion. It changed everything without no one noticing but internet kids and nerds. Curren$y was on the 2009 XXL Freshman cover, dropped that tape with Wiz then dropped the music video for “Breakfast" and the era had officially arrived. Wiz dropped “Burn After Rolling” right after “How Fly” which brought his total mixtapes in 2009 to 3 and he dropped 1 album (Deal or No Deal) and Wiz was on everyones radar in the industry because he had this crazy fucking fan base without a major label.
These 2 artists kicked the door down and the Cool Ass Weed Raps era was born.
Now why I do I call it the cool ass weed raps era and what artists did it consist of?
First I call it that because all the raps during this era were generally non violent. It was just about weed, women, snacks, and clothes. The pioneer is Devin The Dude who doesn’t get NO credit but Devin really made it cool to rap about just fucking bitches and smoking all the weed he can on every song he was on. He didn’t kill niggas on his songs. He just did cool and funny shit. What he did was kind of alternative hip hop. That’s all the weed era was. Alternative hip-hop.
Wiz and Spitta had that same energy and made it cool to not rap about gangsta shit in 2008. They just rapped about themselves and how they really lived.
If you peep “Title Track” on Curren$y’s “Fear and Loathing in New Orleans” tape he rapped
“The first rap I wrote was 5 pages full of bullshit and lies about me killing niggas and flipping pies but then I got by myself and found myself and realized if I was a child in these times I wouldn’t wanna follow in the steps of these guys.”
If you are a day one Spitta fan you would know that nigga was shooting everything up when he was on No Limit Records. He was sort of chill on Cash Money but he was super flamboyant and his raps were super flashy.
That way of thinking in that Title Track lyric birthed an official era. When Spitta figured out that if he was just himself someone out there would relate and he could just build from there. The world big as fuck and somebody gotta relate to you.
Now as far as the rappers of this era. They were….
The Cool Kids
Chip The Ripper
These were the main guys and the only guys that really rapped about violence was Nipsey and Freddie but even though they were gangsta rap they kinda benefitted from this era. Mainly Freddie Gibbs. He had such an underground feel to him and wasn’t super in your face as far as his personality went that he just fit in with the guys who rapped about totally opposite shit than he did. That’s why he toured with majority of these artists on the list.
The Cool Kids dropped “Gone Fishin” in 2009 and basically made thrifting popular. There should be a statue of Mikey Rocks and Chuck Inglish for what they did not only to hip hop but pop culture. All these photo shoots you see in 2017 with these models have and how they dress with the throwback shit. They have The Cool Kids to thank for that. Wasn’t nobody thrifting before they came except for old ass women that watch “Matlock.” The snapbacks and old jerseys they brought all that shit back because of The Cool Kids.
The Cool Ass Weed Raps era was so peaceful. It might have been the most peaceful era we’ve ever seen in hip-hop history. The golden era was during the crack era. The gangsta rap era produced so many classic albums but niggas was getting beat the fuck up or shot up at shows.
This all we did during the weed rap era. Wear camo shorts with the polo socks or high socks. Buy sneakers. Wear snapbacks and shop on Karmaloop for crew necks. Spitta wore Diamond Life so I bought Diamond Life. We all bought good wood chains. Good Wood probably made ungodly amounts of money during this era. Smoke a bunch of weed with cool ass women. No pills or any hard ass drugs. Barely any alcohol. No guns. Niggas just wanted to be cool and listen to cool ass weed raps. I deadass can’t remember having problems with anyone during this era.
This era KILLED the big budget video. Spitta and Creative Control started shooting with Canon’s and every nigga and they momma bought a Canon camera. They essentially put directors like Benny Boom, Little X, Hype Williams out of business because no one was paying for a 6 figure video ever again.
Then the holy grail happened. Arguably the best project out of this era happened. “Kush & OJ” dropped and all of us lost our minds. I had on camo shorts damn near everyday. Wiz had just made the 2010 XXL Freshman list then he dropped that bomb and it elevated him to a level so far ahead of everyone on this list. He was untouchable and people were saying he was the best artist in the game.
Remember when Rick Ross was going crazy and then he came and grabbed Spitta and Wiz for the super high remix? Twitter damn near broke that day. A artist who's whole image is about being the drug kingpin and biggest boss came and got help from the coolest non violent weed rappers on the planet. It was so dope to see because of their contrast but their common interest which was weed.
There were so many classics during this era. “George Kush The Button” by Smoke DZA. “Smokee Robinson,” “Covert Coup,” and “Pilot Talk 1 & 2” by Spitta. “Finally Famous Vol 3” by Big Sean. “Str8 Killa No Filla” by Freddie Gibbs. “Krit Wuz Here” and “Return Of 4eva” by Krit. EVERYTHING FAT DOM KENNEDY DROPPED WAS FLAMES!! FROM 2008-2012! SUPER FACTS! The Cool Kids tapes. Sir Michael Rocks dropped “The Rocks Report” and shitted on niggas. “Lincoln Way Nights” by Stalley. “The Cleveland Show” by Chip The Ripper. It was just full of gems. It was insane how much great music came out of that era.
It was so easy to defend the artists of this era. It’s hard work defending rappers outside of this era. Especially if they catching bodies and selling crack to your grandma every track. This era started “Vibes.” These artists weren’t trash and you listened to them because of how they made you feel. They made everybody feel cool and cozy. If you never knew who any of these artists were it was easy to put you on to them. Get some weed go to datpiff download some shit and you will become a fan. I’ve seen fancy women I’m talking "I only do all white parties and bottle service" women come to a Smokers Club Tour show with their friend who loves Spitta and unexpectedly have the time of their life because of the atmosphere. Fuck that cute shit baby girl and hit this weed and listen to these cool ass raps. It was so easy to convert people to it because wasn’t nobody on some bullshit. NIGGAS ACTUALLY WANTED TO BE HAPPY AND ACTUALLY HAVE FRIENDS!
I don’t think I’ve been to so many concerts in a span of a year in any other era. Every month I was at a show during this era and none of the shows disappointed me. NONE!!! All the artists in this era put on incredible shows. Here in St.Louis the Old Rock House and the Gramophone were CRACKIN damn near every month because of these artist. Everybody high, having fun, and tweeting during the PRIME years of Twitter. Twitter was also actually BIG FUN during this era. I was so addicted to twitter at that time it was insane. I was failing college courses cause all I was doing was tweeting in classes not doing shit. I was tweeting from sun up to sundown 7 days a week. Didn’t give 2 fucks bout Facebook.
I think the era started to fade after Wiz dropped Cabin Fever 1. Majority of these guys got bigger especially Wiz. Spitta was still doing his thing and got a label deal but I think once the majors came into the play that started the end of it. The final nail was the emergence of drill rap. Little niggas traded in the camo shorts for true religions and traded in their good wood chains for extendos. Weed was damn near a third option. Niggas became xan heads and lean sippers, basically J’s. Straight fiends. The violence was coming back to the forefront. The dangerous drugs became the wave. It wasn’t about fun anymore. Niggas wanted to be tough, have opps, and take pictures with guns as their hobbies. After drill the Cool Ass Weed Raps era died. 2012 was truly the end of it.
I’m not trying to sound like a old bitter nigga that shits on the current wave in hip-hop but it was something so special about this era that made me who I am today. I wasn’t angry all the time and the music calmed me down. It felt like an event every time a artist of this era that dropped a tape or an album. You go back and smoke to those tapes and albums it just makes you feel so relaxed.
Light one up to the most underrated era in hip-hop history. It changed a lot of people’s perspectives and lives and I truly miss that shit. It was a great time to be alive.