DJ Ran Cypher Session ft. Rakim (1998 Freestyle)

Sometimes somebody says freestyle and means live performance of an existing verse/song possibly over a different beat than the recorded version. See yesterday's post, "Rakim - Rap City Interview & Freestyle." But then sometimes somebody says freestyle and means otherwise undocumented maybe improvised performance, and when that performance is by Rakim, your ears damn well better perk up like they have radar antennae attached. 

This is that: a little heard freestyle by Rakim. Another YouTube post dates it to 1998, which sounds about right. The 2nd beat Rakim annihilates was produced by Erick Sermon from the infamous LL Cool J posse cut "4,3,2,1," which I somehow for the first time just realized is almost exactly the same beat as Def Squad's "Full Cooperation" (also produced by Sermon). If it ain't broke, don't fix it. If you don't know what the 1st beat is, how did you find me

This concludes the 8th (!) annual Rakim week. If you dug it, check out prior years' Rakim weeks as well as DJ Ran's YouTube, where you'll find more cypher sessions featuring other gifted MCs. Finally, happy belated birthday to the greatest rapper of all time, the God MC Rakim, and peace to anyone reading this.

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