Whenever I’m asked to compile a top 5 of the best rappers in the game, I always include E-40 in the conversation. Several key points factor into this decision: my bias (since I’m from the Bay Area), 40 Water’s endless vernacular that is unnoticeably sinking into today’s top rap songs (for example, ‘Broccoli’ and ‘No Role Modelz’), and his undying relevancy in hip-hop that’s lasted around 30 years. His uniqueness still lingers in contemporary hip-hop, exemplified by his new single ‘Fo Sho’ with his labelmate B-Legit, featuring JT The 4th.
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E-40 and B-Legit have been on countless records together, and have finally planned a collaborative album titled Connected and Respected. Though ‘Fo Sho’ is a radio-friendly record that perfectly introduces the long-awaited album, 40 and Legit have had tracks as chill as ‘Hurricane’ and as gangsta as ‘Mob Shit’ – meaning prepare yourself for every version of the dynamic duo in one sitting.
‘Fo Sho’ is produced by Fre$h on the Beat, who first appeared on the standout track ‘Bring Back the Sideshow’ on E-40’s latest album The D-Boy Diary Book 2. 40 Water is also known for bringing up new talent especially from the Bay Area. Fre$h has built his resume by working with some of the Hyphy Movement’s pioneers such as Mistah F.A.B., Roach Gigz and Keak Da Sneak to say the least.
Back to my point, E-40 has a discography that eclipses nearly every rapper’s record books, he’s able to maintain his relevancy in hip-hop while also ascending newcomers into the game, and of course his vocabulary is unmatched by any rapper. Need I say more about why E-40 belongs in every top 5 list out there?
Connected and Respected currently has no release date, but was announced to be released in summer 2017, according to E-40. Stay tuned for more on the 40 and B-Legit collaborative project.