This morning I was driving to an appointment for work in my brand new 2012 Lexus and I had my XM Radio on the XL Hip-Hop station.
A song titled "Shot Caller" (remix with P. Diddy and Rick Ross) began to play. The artist is a new rapper named French Montana who just recently signed to hip-hop mogul superstar P. Diddy's infamous Bad Boy Records label.
What caught my attention was that this song began to cut into sample beats of the 1997 legendary rap song "It's All About the Benjamins" (a very popular song when I was a freshman in college) by P. Diddy who then was known as Puff Daddy, and which also contained verses from the LOX, Lil Kim, and Notorious B.I.G.
I personally loved this song because it was one of those iconic rap songs that was just too cool. It contained a very distinct sample from a 1970's hit "I Did It For Love" by Love Unlimited that when slowed down a bit and reinforced with a stronger hip-hop beat made a really hardcore late 1990's rap song.
The other legendary sample that kicks in when Notorious B.I.G. starts rapping his verse is from a classic Jackson 5 song titled "It's Great To Be Here".
The remix version for French Montana's "Shot Caller" is an obvious homage to the 1997 Benjamins hit as P. Diddy even references himself to his own verse from the 1997 song as the Benjamins beat kicks in.
Then of course current heavyweight rap star Rick Ross in an obvious attempt to emulate the late great Notorious B.I.G. starts rapping to the same part of Benjamins where B.I.G. does his verse to the Jackson 5 sampled beat.
But that's not all that would catch one's attention for Rick Ross then not only pays tribute to B.I.G. but to boxing superstar Manny Pacquiao by rapping about him in his verse. Ross even raps about how Manny always goes into the corner of the ring and says a pre-fight prayer before each of his huge sold out matches. To being in a ringside seat watching him fight and then uses boxing terminology to evade haters by bobbing and weaving.
The exact Rick Ross verse goes like:
Top down praying to my lord and savior
We on the floor Pacquiao the world's greatest
Boxing (Expletive) all I ever did was bob and weave
Now the crib 8 mill that's on everything
This is obviously big publicity not only for Manny Pacquiao but also of course for the sport of boxing to have one of the most popular major rap stars not only give him a shout out in a new hit song but to declare him the greatest.
Pacquiao has been on top of the world for the last several years but most recently with his less than impressive performance against Juan Manuel Marquez in November, many felt he actually lost that fight and many highly regarded boxing publications and media outlets began to remove Manny from the top mythical No. 1 pound for pound spot and into the second spot now behind, you guessed it his long time outside of the ring nemesis Floyd Mayweather.
Of course with the recent news of Mayweather being sentenced to do prison time for taking a guilty plea bargain many on Twitter began to bash the undefeated pugilist with very little support or positive tweets regarding Floyd.
Pacquiao has been known to be buddies with Rick Ross and word began to spread that Rick was supposed to walk him into the ring against Sugar Shane Mosley, which did not actually end up happening.
Rick Ross not only is buddies with Pacquiao but has also been feuding with Mayweather as well for the last few years.
With lyrics dissing Mayweather in a song titled: "We Riding By Your Mama's House" talking about everything from the incident of his house getting robbed, not paying the IRS, leaving Grand Rapids Michigan behind, to Haitians coming after him to cut off his foot.
On another diss track titled "Mafia Music" Ross raps about Mayweather making it rain with fake money by saying: "That Mayweather money looking funny in the light".
With Rick's beef with Mayweather does he truly really feel that Pacquiao is the greatest as he claims in the French Montana "Shot Caller" remix song? Or is he using the verse to punk Mayweather again?
Whether you are a fan of Pacquiao or Mayweather or in those rare cases such as myself a fan of both, I think as a boxing fan it's always a great thing to have the most popular rap stars giving shout outs and rapping about our boxing stars in their songs to keep boxing relevant to the masses.
Next I would love to see Pacquiao in a Rick Ross music video shadow boxing and throwing a 10 punch combo flurry to the camera and having some fine Filipino models on the beaches of Miami dancing in bikinis around Manny as he trains. This video would probably get about a billion views on YouTube in about a week or so.
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