Russell Simmons: Kendrick Lamar Is a Better Rapper Than Macklemore

Russell Simmons

Russell Simmons: Kendrick Lamar Is a Better Rapper Than Macklemore

Def Jam co-founder talks Grammy Awards controversy on Reddit's "Ask Me Anything."

Published January 28, 2014

As one of the most well-respected architects of hip hop, Russell Simmons may be the foremost person to ask "What did you think about Kendrick Lamar getting robbed last night for best rap album?" as one Reddit user did during an Uncle Rush-hosted "Ask Me Anything" Q&A session held Monday (Jan. 27).

Simmons's answer was diplomatic, but clear: "Kendrick is absolutely a better rapper," he wrote, adding, "Macklemore had one of the most inspiring, socially conscious songs of the year ["Same Love"] and that is what did well for him. He's a great rapper, but there is no evidence anywhere that he's a better artist than Lamar."

Those four Grammys or "gold sippy cups" as Jay Z calls them that Macklemore won Sunday simply aren't proof enough. "Macklemore had the power of an important social message," Simmons emphasized again, when asked why he thought Mack won.

Previously, Macklemore predicted that there'd be funk to face if he won in the Best Rap Album category, and then he publicly apologized via Instagram and radio after he did win, citing his race white among other reasons why he feels like he jacked Lamar's shine. He's apologized about it so much, in fact, that he's even prompted requests that he stop apologizing.

Also in "Ask Me Anything," the Def Jam co-founder revealed that he did yoga with some of the Odd Future fellas because "they're some cool young dudes;" that Rick Rubin, Kanye West and Swizz Beatz are his favorite producers; and that YG is his favorite artist "right now." (At least he was that morning. Jay Z, Simmons said, is his favorite artist "of the month.") is your #1 source for Black celebrity news, photos, exclusive videos and all the latest in the world of hip hop and R&B music.

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 (Photo: Charley Gallay/Getty Images for TWC)

Written by BET-Staff


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