2017 was a notable year for hip-hop collaborative albums. There have been 20-plus joint rap albums that have dropped this year featuring the likes of mainstream artists.
Most of the collaborative projects that came out in 2017 have been worthy. It should come as no surprise that we saw so many, given the fact that music production and file-sharing technology make it easier for artists to work together on a project.
As we get ready to say goodbye to 2017, let’s take a look at some of the top 5 collaborative releases.
1. Offset & 21 Savage & Metro Boomin
As the title suggests, the collaborative project between Offset and 21 Savage came without warning. It was announced the day before Halloween and dropped the next day. Nearly everyone got curious to get a hold of what was going on as 21 and Offset delivered a short but speechless project.
Rapping along the backdrop of Metro Boomin’s haunting, horror themed production, 21 and Offset took listeners on an exhilarating, fun ride from beginning to end. The Halloween couldn’t have been any better as 21, Offset and Metro provide the hip-hop equivalent of a horror movie.
Once again, Metro proves why he’s the most popular producer in the game, as so clearly he brought out the most in 21 and Offset. the chemistry between the three is perfect.
2.DJ Quik & Problem-- Rosecrans
Problem and the legendary DJ Quik give a moving tribute to their hometown of Los Angeles on the 12-track album Rosecrans. The project features Problem following in the footsteps of other notable rapper like Kendrick Lamar who received admiration for his own tributes to his hometown.
The album is pure West Coast from beginning to the end with '90s G Funk influences and instrumental solos that’ll fit right in to any of the classic West Coast albums of the late '80s and early '90s.
DJ Quik’s entertaining production complements Problem’s lyrical proficiency throughout the album. Tracks like “You Are Everything,” “A New Nite/Rosecrans Groove,” and “Central Ave” puts you right in the heart of Compton.
3. Fabolous & Jadakiss -- Friday on Elm Street
The joint project between Fabolous andJadakiss has been teased for several years now. It was officially announced at the beginning of the year but the conflicting schedules of the two rappers kept the project on hold for months. Once they found the time to do the project, the result was well worth the hype.
The chemistry between the two veteran rappers is great as they go effortlessly trading their signature punchlines. The album shows exactly why these two are revered icons on the New York hip-hop scene. The horror theme is present on the album as tracks like “F vs. J Intro,” “Stand Up,” “Ice Pick,” and “I Pray” would all fit on revamped soundtracks to the famous horror movies of the '80s.
4. Blu & Exile -- In the Beginning:
Before the HeavensIn 2007, Blu & Exile joined forces to release what is now considered a classic underground album, Below the Heavens. Fast forward 10 years and the duo released In the Beginning: Before the Heavens, a collection of unreleased material from the recording sessions that birthed the classic Below the Heavens.
In an interview , Blu states, “Below the Heavens was about being underground, while comparing mainstream success to living in heaven. This is before that. The only thing that happened before God made the heavens and Earth [is God] says, ‘In The Beginning,’ so this is like the training wheels.”
Given the current landscape that hip-hop is in, In the Beginning: Before the Heavens is a much needed breath of fresh air from the past.
5. Gucci Mane & Metro Boomin --Droptopwop
No one has had quite the interest likeGucci Mane has since his return from prison in May 2016. From a stunning physical transformation, to becoming a married man, to releasing multiple projects, it’s easy to forget that Gucci was gone for two years. To celebrate the one-year anniversary of his release from prison, Gucci teamed up with Metro Boomin to release their collaborative project, Droptopwop.
The album is arguably the best entry out of all the projects he’s released since leaving prison. Guwop is at his best here. Droptopwop features the content that defined Gucci’s career, but this time, after kicking his drug habit and losing weight, Guwop’s voice sounds clearer than ever. It adds a whole other level to his artistry that we never heard from him before.
TRACKS YOU NEED TO LISTEN
Caravan Palace - Dramophone
Julia Michaels - Issues
G-Eazy - Sober (Audio) ft. Charlie Puth
G-Eazy & Halsey - Him & I (Official Video)