The first dynasty that always comes to mind (if you aren’t a Jordan stan) is the Roc’s run in the early 2000s. What made it work were the astronomic singular talent of Hov, complemented by the business savvy of Dame (who knows what Biggs did?) to surround Jay with talent from all across the hip-hop spectrum. Kanye held down the backpacking set, State Property held down homies on the block, and The Diplomats the suburban kids diggin’ for what’s good in the hood.
Why the Roc failed was simply the beef between the post and the point—which makes Kanye’s position that much easier since he’s the lone sergeant leading his GOOD Music privates.
CuDi is closest to corporal, with the big single (two years later, it’s still big), and an album looming. Hell, he ended up on the cover of Complex, which is kind of a big deal when you consider it’s usually reserved for artists who’ve made more than one song you and I can name. Maybe it’s the result of Kanye always playing guest editor over there. Anyhow, it’s a good look for one of the minions.
As the story goes, it was CuDi who may have been the influence on Kanye to sing for an entire album. It’s always been my theory that after the mainstream success of Volume 2: Hard Knock Life, Jay got his Beanie Sigel on for Vol. 3 to take it back to the streets. We all know how that turned out. And we all know how 808s & Heartbreak turned out. So let’s call Cudder the Beans of the squad.
Then there’s Consequence, who’s undoubtedly the Bleek of the group. He can sorta rhyme, but he has the star appeal that any hypeman has—none (sorry Banks). But Kanye has Hype Williams directing his latest video, even laying down a few bars for the lead single for Cons’ second album. You read that correctly. Consequence has a second album (a marketing exec’s dream)—all because of Mr. West.
The same day photos from Consequence’s video shoot were released (today, that’s why I wrote this), a video leaked of Big Sean in the studio with the almost-legendary (too complacent to be fully legendary) No I.D., so you know Kanye wants the kid’s debut in capable hands. Sean can spit, and he’s probably the most lyrically adept emcee of the group. His influence might be a small reason why Kanye’s been on the lyrical tip of late. The lyrical young gun pushing the top dog is oddly reminiscent of Young Chris.
Mr. Hudson, well he’s the Kanye. Dame was plotting the hip-hop takeover, but Kanye has bigger plans—pop. Hence, the blond-haired Brit singer who Kanye has tipped to be the biggest artist in the world. He’s thinking global. And with the biggest mouthpiece in the game, Kanye is more than willing to speak on his artists. You know Jay doesn’t compliment anyone, which is why Dame was needed.
My only question is who will hold down the streets? The biggest movement movin’ in the streets has always been the one to break the mainstream wide open. With his clout and the ability to learn from the past mistakes of others, it seems like Kanye’s got everything down pat. But with a clear void in the roster, you can’t help but think he’s skipping vital steps.