The Hip Hop “Other Guy” Hall Of Fame » VSB

Featured, Lists, Music, Pop Culture

The Hip Hop “Other Guy” Hall Of Fame

Mike Brown/Getty Images


If you’re a fan of hip hop, you know what I’m talking about.  In most rap groups, there’s a stand out emcee who is the face of the franchise, the leader of the team and the straw that stirs the drink.

But we’re not talking about that.

We’re talking about the other guy in the group.  You might call them second bananas or the dude beside the dude, but that really diminishes their role in the group.  A good other guy is at the same time memorable and mutable.  Sometimes he sets it up, sometimes he brings it home, but he’s the thing that brings it all together like Jeff Lebowski’s rug.  They’re a stop above hype men and a step below stars, but they need their own recognition, so I’m opening The Other Guy Hall of Fame today with this inaugural class of inductees.

Willie D

He’s the classic other guy.  He’s got a signature voice and style that makes you want to listen, but not enough personality or individual charisma to keep you hooked.  His verse on “My Mind’s Playin’ Tricks On Me” might have been one of the greatest southern gangsta bars ever had it not been for the fact that he was followed by Bushwick Bill’s. Willie D missed his calling, man.  He should be doing movie trailer voiceovers.

Woulda been the guy, but… Eclipsed by his crew. Bushwick was a crazy midget and Scarface is one of the greatest story telling emcees of all time.  It’s hard  impossible to compete with that.

MC Ren

Here’s a guy with probably one of the hardest deliveries in the history of hip hop.  Ren assaults tracks with raw aggression and a style of rhyming that became the prototype for others like DMX to follow.  And that’s the problem.  That’s all he does.  There’s no finesse.  It’s like they hand him the ball and all he can do is windmill dunks and scowls.

Woulda been the guy, but… The team quit on him. Ice Cube went solo, Dr. Dre teamed up with Snoop and Ren was the odd man out.

Parrish Smith

This is a tough one for me because I’m a huge fan of EPMD, but at the end of the day, it was Erick Sermon’s group.  Parrish Smith suffered from the double barreled flaws of having a monotone delivery combined with a lack of charisma.  On top of that, he got lost on posse cuts and you ain’t the man when you’re getting out-rhymed by Dray and Skoob (liggety look thiggity that up) on your own albums.

Woulda been the guy, but… Hubris and perspective. The Hit Squad got bigger and he got more irrelevant then he made the classic Other Guy mistake of going solo and dissing his old partner.

Crunchy Black

Remember that guy on stage with the 3-6 Mafia during the Oscars back in the day?  His name is Crunchy Black.  That’s all you ever really need to know about him other than the fact that he has the same number of Oscars as Martin Scorsese.

Woulda been the guy but… He’s Crunchy Black and he was lucky to have been along for the ride.

Malik B

He quit The Roots because he liked doing drugs, a lot.  Now he watches The Roots on TV with Jimmy Fallon with the rest of us.  Drugs are bad.

Woulda been the guy but… Drugs.


In 1999, he was Cash Money Records’ secret weapon.  He had the voice, lyrics, and delivery wrapped up in a New Orleans drawl that you might’ve overlooked if you weren’t knee deep in Hot Boys records.  But don’t get it twisted, Juvenile was number one, Lil Wayne was number three and Baby Gangsta B-Geezy was a solid number two.  Don’t believe me?  Pick up “Guerilla Warfare” and listen to Them Boys A War.  BG is one of the best that never was.

Woulda been the guy but… Drugs and a bad record deal.  It’s hard to extricate yourself from a shitty deal and funny money when you can’t stay off that shit long enough to think straight.


The original second banana.  DMC had all the skills but just wasn’t the guy you tuned in for.  He was the first to learn the MC Ren lesson that you can’t attack every track and he literally lost his voice over it.  But when I was a kid and me and my big brother played rappers up in our room, I didn’t mind being DMC to his Run.

Woulda been the guy but… Nepotism.  When your manager is the brother of a member of the group, his interests are naturally gonna be conflicted.)


He’s garbage.  He’s only here because of The Score and even then, his best line was introducing Young Zee from The Outsidaz.

Woulda been the guy but… Glaring lack of talent.  Pras is also a charter member of the “Fast Forward Through This Shit” Hall of Fame.

Bun B

Let’s be honest.  Bun B is one of the greatest emcees to touch the mic who, through the curse of bad label deals (thanks, Jive) never made it past dropping hot 16s on everybody else’s shit.  Add to that, his partner was Pimp C (RIP) who was arguably one of the best voices and producers in the game and you can see how his greatness was overshadowed by his partner’s presence.  But don’t get it twisted, Bun can and does stand alone as one of the all time greats, it’s just that his career has moved past that now and he’s a fixure in hip hop culture and not just rap music.

Woulda been the guy but… Lack of exposure.  UGK made some classics, but Pimp C’s incarceration and untimely death stymied any chance they had to blow up.

Big Boi

This is the man who The Other Guy Hall of Fame should be named after.  An emcee who ain’t bad in a group that’s one of the greatest who never disappointed but also never exceeded expectations.  Big Boi will get your attention but in the way that Cheddar Bay Biscuits get your attention at Red Lobster.  Yeah, they good than a muhg, but that’s not what you came for.  3000 is the Walt’s Shrimp of the crew, but you can’t have one without the other, right?

Woulda been the guy but… He got Scottie Pippened.  Individually, he’s great, but without his legendary teammate you just feel like something’s missing.  A Big Boi album is like those Pippen led Bulls teams that were good, but just not memorable.

Corey Richardson

Corey Richardson is originally from Newport News, Virginia currently living in Chicago, Illinois with his wife and two daughters. Ad guy at work, Dad guy in life, and whiskey enthusiast, Corey spends his time crafting words, telling bedtime stories, and working hard at becoming the legend he is in his own mind. You can read his paternal musings at where he chronicles his life doing battle with all of the women with his last name.

  • miss t-lee

    Yeah…can’t get with the Bun B or Big Boi.
    Both groups needed to be duos. Equal parts made magic. One with out the other is like corn flakes without the milk.
    Ham with no burger, cake with no ice cream.

    Willie D–yes I’ll definitely agree on that. He still had my favorite voice out the group, but ‘Face’s storytelling can’t be beat.

    • Val

      Lol @ ham with no burger

      • miss t-lee

        Just incomplete!

    • Courtney Wheeler

      All this talk about Bun B made me had to bust out “Sippin on some Syrup”

      • miss t-lee

        It’s good, but it was never a fave. Still love the beginning though! :)

  • I’m a need to talk to you off camera about those last , two. You better hope Daryl Mac doesn’t happen to be in the neighborhood too.

  • Brooklyn_Bruin

    It’s funny how un-marketable the rest of leaders of the new school were. Busta Rhymes actually had a career.

    • Adrienne Johnson

      YES! They were awesome!

    • panamajackson

      No shade, its the same with ATCQ. Like, we all loved Phife, but QTip just had star power all over him. Which was amazing cuz he was nowhere NEAR the top of the best rapper mountain. His musical chops saved him.

      • Thinking about it, QTip created Pharrell’s whole lane. Be the musical dude who has solid fundamentals and stays in his lane.

        • panamajackson

          I don’t see a lie here.

    • Quirlygirly

      Poor Charlie Brown and Dinco D..they just faded to black

      • Brooklyn_Bruin

        Milo in the dance had it the worst. They did do a song with Busta on one of his more recent tapes. Shed a tear status

  • Courtney Wheeler

    Bun B is amazing and his political coverage of the trump campaign on VICE was the truth.

    • Dude had Confederate flags, a “Don’t Tread on Me Flags” and a Clemson hat. Ew…
      Walterboro is one of those places that scares me. There is still an active cell of the John Birch society there.

      • Courtney Wheeler

        I know right? Irony.

    • Question

      This. Is. Amazing.

  • TeeChantel

    Add everyone that ever worked with Puff to this list.
    EXCEPT for Biggie.

    • Adrienne Johnson

      Except Biggie and Lil Kim, though….

    • Tatiana

      Craig Mack

      • Nik White

        Sadly yes him too.

      • TeeChantel

        Pure definition of the Other Guy with the ugly face.

  • Other_guy13

    Crunchy Black…# 1 Pras…close 2nd…BG…Really…REALLY…bruh….BIg Boi and Bun B….

  • Besides me…
    Did anyone else buy this?

    • QueenRaven23

      No, but I heard it’s amazing.

    • HouseOfBonnets

      No but kryptonite was my ish.

      • TeeChantel

        and BOB.

      • The entire first Album was Big Boi heavy.

      • Animate

        And Kryptonite wasn’t on this album lol

        • HouseOfBonnets

          It wasn’t….but I wanted to give Big Boi a win

    • That track with Jamie Foxx. It goes hard at casa de cogito. I love this album straight down to back up plan.

    • panamajackson


      • General disdain or just not interested?

        • panamajackson

          I love Big Boi, i just didnt feel the album was that good.

          • I grabbed it after I heard two cuts + listened to him hype it up.
            Yup. He got me, lol
            I gave it away.

    • Yes actually.

    • miss t-lee

      I own it.

    • Animate

      Yep. His albums are jamming as expected.

  • Brooklyn_Bruin

    Fat Lip from the Pharcyde was that dude. Slim kid Tre tried a bit.

    But It’s the other dudes that still tour as the Pharcyde.

    My two favorite cats on this topic
    – Jarobi from Tribe
    – 5ft accelerator from black moon

    Honorable mention to the guy in Heltah Skeltah that rant wasn’t Sean P.

    • TeeChantel

      You took my heart with Pharcyde. Good mention.

    • The syde were definitely a squad. Not one of them could do it on their own.

    • Trill Mickelson

      Yo, the 5 ft. Accelerator! I was trying to think of Boot Camp and even I forgot about 5ft. Also, Rock was the other dude in Heltah. Rock’s delivery is lowkey one of the best, IMO. Like if I created a rapper in a laboratory, he might sound like Rock.

      I can sit here and talk about Boot Camp all day, b.

      • Brooklyn_Bruin

        Lol @ B.

      • CheGueverraWitBlingOn

        Do it. Do it!

  • Now that Run the Jewels is almost three cd’s in I’ll nominate El Producto.

    • You must be crazy.

      • You’re aren’t professionally qualified to make that assertion.

        • I got evidence, #doe.

          • Evidence that El-P isn’t a second banana or that I’m crazy?

            • The latter. El-P got bars.

              • I think he can go…he’s just not on Mike’s level in that department.

    • Brooklyn_Bruin

      Big Juss is laughing somewhere

  • TeeChantel

    who was the other guy in Da Lox? Sheek Louch?

    • I just thought of him.

      • TeeChantel

        Great minds.

More Like This