Who Wore It Better? is a feature where we look at two rap songs that use the same sample and decide which artist fits more snug into the backing track.
Kool John is a Richmond rapper who came about from the $hmoplife parties he would throw in the East Bay. He started putting out compilations a few years ago with local rappers, and in 2013, he put out two mixtapes of his own, Peace, Love and Shmoplife and ChillDrinkFuckSmoke. The former was hella underrated, full of samples of great late-90s rap songs and Lil Jon hiccups. One of the highlights was “Full of dat Weed,” which is build around the same vocal sample as King Louie’s. The beat has almost no resemblance to Happy Perez’s original, but it does feature two of my favorite Bay rappers, DB tha General and Plane Jane. DB’s verse starts slow, his usual paranoia lost in a party setting, but turns all the way up once he’s yelling, “WOO! WOO! BASEDGOD!” Plane Jane athletically moves through the third verse like she’s throwing ‘bows across a crowded dancefloor.
Problem was born in West Germany and grew up in Compton. He’s been putting out mixtapes for years, and finally found some success when he dropped his Young Bleed remake last year. The League of Starz-produced update made it to number 47 on the Billboard R&B/Hip-Hop chart and got an official remix featuring Wiz Khalifa, Tyga, Chris Brown, and Master P, who was on the 1998 original. The remix is superior but the main draw is the original song’s sparseness as it fits into ratchet music.
Winner: Kool John
The Problem song was a legitimate slap last summer and has its merits, but because the beat and even Problem’s flow hardly changed from Young Bleed’s version, it feels empty. It’s like when the Fader publishes online an old article from the print magazine because the topic becomes relevant today (Like, say, hyphy). DB tha General and Plane Jane are way better than Bad Lucc, and we here at Who Wore It Better award originality in an unoriginal tableau. Also, I’m still mad “Twerk” wasn’t a bigger hit.