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 -- which are generally referred to as "posse-cuts" -- have become some of the most memorable in the genre's history, as rap's most legendary stars team 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 Presents: Tale of the Tape, our series in which we break down the greatest posse cuts of all-time and rank the verses from worst to first.
In our latest installment of the series, we'll be revisiting "Sippin' on Some Syrup," a song from legendary rap group Three 6 Mafia's fourth studio album, When the Smoke Clears: Sixty 6, Sixty 1, which helped elevate the Memphis natives from being regional titans to the certified stars. The song paired Three 6 Mafia with fellow southern luminaries UGK and it was symbolic of the solidarity among rap factions from below the Mason-Dixon line. Released as the second single from the album, "Sippin' on Some Syrup" would become Three 6 Mafia's biggest hit at that time by peaking at No. 30 on the Hot R&B/Hip Hop Songs chart. It also helped propel When the Smoke Clears: Sixty 6, Sixty 1 to platinum status, their first album to achieve that feat. In the wake of "Sippin' on Some Syrup" putting the rap world on notice, both Three 6 Mafia and UGK went on to enjoy their most prosperous years in the game. The song remains a timeless record that signaled the calm before the storm, which was the southern explosion of the early aughts.
Without further adieu, check out the ranking of the verses on "Sippin' on Some Syrup."
4. Juicy J
The most charismatic member of the Three 6 Mafia clan is Juicy J, whose exuberance is palpable whenever he puts his vocals on wax. On this occasion, The Juiceman kicks a rap that casts him in a drug-induced stupor, as he's under the influence of everything from designer drugs to prescription medicine. Juicy J's verse is solid and continues the momentum built by the others, but fails to trump his fellow rappers on the track, resulting in him getting a fourth place finish.
Standout Lyrics: "People always asking me, is the Three 6 high on that?/Rolling on them X pills, stuttering, pup-pup powder packs/Woah-wuh where the weed at, ain't like that we need that/NyQuil will slow me down, something that keep me easy/Nothing like that yella yella, that'll have you itching, man/Talking like, what's up, fool? Vocal chords sounding lame."
3. DJ Paul
Known as a beast behind the boards, DJ Paul is equally lethal behind the mic, hence his position as one of the chief lyricists within the Three 6 Mafia crew. DJ Paul wastes no time making his presence known on this ode to promethazine-laced drinks by coming out of the gate without hesitation and reeling off an X-rated verse, while flexing his storytelling skills. Graphic in nature, DJ Paul's rhyme is serviceable and far from lackluster. But, it lands him third place honors on this particular meeting of the minds.
Standout Lyrics: "Two niggas all at the mouth, two niggas all at the ass/And plus, that syrup have a nigga dick hard all night and she cool with that/She popped her a pill of X, and drank on some orange juice/And just when you thought she was freaking, she done got super loose/Niggas come in by threes and deuces, all in circles like duck-duck-goose/All that want it can bone it, she on that X and that tootie fruit."
2. Bun B
The lyrical guile of Bun B is no secret among rap enthusiasts, as the de facto lead MC of UGK was among the first orators out of the south to gain respect among his northern counterparts. Aside from his albums alongside Pimp C, this reverence was due to his national fame, thanks to his impressive rhyme spills on hits such as this pivotal posse-cut. Drawing the straw to rap last, Bun B anchors the track with a dexterous verse that makes use of his knack for metaphorical rhyme schemes and nearly edges out the other three artists on the track. However, in the end, the bragging rights for best performance on this track fall out of his grasp, forcing the Texan to settle for second.
Standout Lyrics: "Nigga, tell me what you know 'bout Frank, Nito, and Young Guido/Paul and Vito, we play a tune that's sweeter than Pedito/With my Three 6 niggas pouring up in my southern credo/Quick, fast, we'll put it on your ass like John Bido/Cause you fronting rap sangers, be creamy like a Zanger/You ain't from the manger, boy, but you gets the middle finger."
1. Pimp C
Pimp C's value as a producer helped propel UGK to the forefront of southern rap. But, his talent as a rapper was often understated prior to a string of show-stopping guest verses. One of the most iconic of these performances is his appearance alongside group-mate Bun B and Three 6 Mafia on this clash from the group's fourth studio album. Employing his twangy drawl, Pimp C saunters over the beat by talking down on faux-ballers and fake players, while extolling the act of pouring up. Opening the song with a boastful string of couplets, the late Port Arthur native shuts things down with an efficient lead-off verse that is the most riveting portion on this classic collaborative effort.
Standout Lyrics: "I'm trill working the wheel, a pimp, not a simp/Keep the dope fiends higher than the Goodyear Blimp/We eat so many shrimp, I got iodine poisoning/Fuck niggas make me sick with all that pinching and bargaining/You say that you a boss, I ain't believing that shit/You got the funny Geneva watch, with the Ferrari kit/Take that monkey shit off, you embarrassing us/I got the red promethazine, thick orange, and yellow tuss."
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