In hip-hop, fans and critics often marvel at and put a premium on the supreme soloists or groups who can craft classic songs and bodies of work while remaining the central figure. However, the most electric moments in the culture occur when multiple emcees collaborate on a track, with the sole purpose of asserting themselves as the most lyrically gifted by delivering an epic rhyme spill that outclasses the others. Throughout the years, the songs—generally referred to as "posse cuts"—have become some of the most memorable in the genre's history, with rap's most legendary stars teaming up on wax and bringing the most rabid of rap fans' fantasies to reality.
In celebration of these historic songs and what they mean to the culture, REVOLT TV presents 'Tale of the Tape,' a series that breaks down the greatest posse cuts of all time, and rank the verses from least impressive to most beloved.
In the latest installment of the series, we'll be revisiting "All About the Benjamins (Remix)," one of the most legendary and memorable songs from the Bad Boy Records catalog and a song that also marked the height of its reign as the hottest label in rap. Produced by Hit-Men member Deric "D-Dot" Angelettie, "All About the Benjamins (Remix)" was released as the third single from Puff Daddy's debut album, No Way Out, which arrived just months after the death of Bad Boy's flagship artist and biggest star, The Notorious B.I.G.
While the monstrous single "I'll Be Missing You" helped eulogize the rapper, in contrast, "All About the Benjamins (Remix)" was celebratory in nature. On it, the Bad Boy family came together for a song that reminded the public of their dominance and star-power. Boasting an all-star lineup, including Puff Daddy, Lil Kim, Jadakiss, Styles P and a posthumous appearance from The Notorious B.I.G., "All About the Benjamins (Remix)" was a massive hit, peaking at No. 2 on the Billboard 200 and helping power No Way Out to sell more than seven million copies. Two decades after its release, "All About the Benjamins (Remix)" is considered as one of the greatest rap songs of all time and a staple within pop culture, as well. It continues to be revered by fans, young and old.
Without further adieu, check out our ranking of the verses on "All About the Benjamins (Remix)" below.
Building his reputation as the standout member of The LOX with impressive showings on mixtape freestyles and his guest spot on The Notorious B.I.G.'s Life After Death cut "Last Day," Jadakiss was thrust into the limelight with his appearance on Puff Daddy's No Way Out single. The second Bad Boy to grace the track with their presence, Jadakiss lays down a string of couplets that would be clever enough to outshine the competition in most instances, but underwhelms when judged against those spat by his costars.
Standout Lyrics: "I'm with Mo' sippers, watched by gold diggers/Rocking Bejor denims with gold zippers/Lost your touch, we kept ours, poppin' Cristals/Freakin' the three-quarter reptiles/Enormous cream, forest green Benz jeep for my team/So while you sleep I'mma scheme/We see through, that's why nobody never gon' believe you/You should do what we do, stack chips like Hebrews"
4. Sheek Louch
As the most understated member of The LOX in terms of visibility, it's easy to forget how many legendary verses Sheek Louch has under his belt, one of them being his explosive stanza on "All About The Benjamins (Remix)." Picking up where partner-in-rhyme Jadakiss left off, Sheek feeds off the frenetic energy of the D-Dot Angelettie produced beat from the opening bar, dropping classic one-liners and hearty boasts in a performance that is equally flawless, as it is unforgettable.
Standout Lyrics: "I'm strictly tryin' to cop those colossal-sized Picassos/And have papi flip coke outside Delgado's/Tienda, with cash flowin' like Sosa/And a Latin chick transportin' in the chocha/Stampedin' over, pop Mo's, never sober/Flexin' Range Rovers dealin' weight by Minnesota/Avoidin' narcs with camcorders and Chevy Novas/Stash in the building with this chick named Willona/From Daytona, when I was young I wanted to bone her/But now I only hit chicks who win beauty pageants"
3. The Notorious B.I.G.
The murder of The Notorious B.I.G. in March 1997 left Bad Boy Records and the hip hop community in a state of mourning and uncertainty. But, the Brooklyn legend's voice still dominating the airwaves in the wake of his death helped fans cope with the loss. Although gone in the physical form, Biggie's presence would be felt when Puff Daddy dropped the "All About The Benjamins (Remix)," which included one of the last verses Biggie recorded. Rhyming over a sample of The Jackson 5's "It's Great to Be Here" hit, The Invisible Bully gets busy with a verse that's yet another display of his lyrical mastery and arguably the best on the track in terms of technique. However, as electric as Biggie's showing on "All About the Benjamins (Remix)" is, it fails to outshine a few of the others on the track. This statement that may seem blasphemous. But, it's ultimately closer to fact than fiction.
Standout Lyrics: "Uh, uh, uh, I been had skills, Cristal spills/Hide bills in Brazil, about a mill', the ice grill/Make it hard to figure me, liquor be kickin' me/In my asshole; undercover, Donnie Brasco/Left my East Coast girl the Bentley to twirl/While my West Coast shorty push the chrome 740/Rockin' Redman and Naughty, oh, where my kitty cat?/Half a brick of yay in the bra where her titties at"
Before Diddy, Brother Love, or any of his various monikers, there was Puff Daddy. This man who -- at one time -- seemed to have the Midas touch and a pulse on the culture like no other. Prior to The Notorious B.I.G.'s death, Puff was coaxed by his start artist and friend to become an artist himself, a leap the exec-turned-rapper made in 1996 with his appearance alongside The LOX on "All About The Benjamins." The same verse Puffy spat on the original version would appear on the remix and has gone on to become one of the most recognizable and quotable of its era, resulting in generations of rap fans wanting to be ballers and shot callers. Outshining some of the best lyricists of all time, Puff's appearance on "All About The Benjamins (Remix)" is one for the ages. But, it's overshadowed by a certain Brooklyn bombshell.
Standout Lyrics: "Now, what y'all wanna do?/Wanna be ballers, shot callers, brawlers/Who be dippin' in the Benz with the spoilers/On the low from the Jake in the Taurus/Tryin' to get my hands on some Grants like Horace/Yeah, livin' the raw deal/Three course meals: spaghetti, fettuccine, and veal/But still, everything's real in the field"
1. Lil Kim
In the span of two years, Lil Kim went from being the Bonnie to The Notorious B.I.G.'s Clyde, as part of Junior M.A.F.I.A. to becoming one of the biggest stars in rap off the strength of her platinum solo debut, Hardcore. Regarded as the new queen of rap, Lil Kim's reign was announced in 1997 with her appearance on "All About The Benjamins (Remix)." Batting cleanup, Lil Kim would be the fourth artist to step up to the plate. The Queen Bee walked away with a home-run, turning in a verse that is simply a tour de force and captures her at the height of her powers. Mixing fashion statement ("dressed in all black, like The Omen") with threats of bodily harm ("German Ruger for your ass, bitch, deep-throat it"), Lil Kim's showing on "All About The Benjamins (Remix)" encapsulates everything we love about her and is hands down the best verse on one of the pivotal posse cuts of all time.
Standout Lyrics: "What the blood clot, wanna bumble with the Bee, huh?/Bzzz, throw a hex on the whole family/Dressed in all black like The Omen/Have your friends singin', "This is for my homie"/And you know me from makin' niggas so sick/Floss in my Six, with the 'Lex on thewrist/If it's murder, you know she wrote it/German Ruger for yo' ass, bitch, deepthroat it"
Revisit "It's All About The Benjamins" below.
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