What defines an icon? In hip hop, it is an artist whose influence is immeasurable, whose stature exceeds his contemporaries, whose music defines the cultural ethos of a generation. MCs like Biggie, 2Pac, Jay-Z, Nas. Producers like Kanye West, Dr. Dre or Timbaland. Yet in the history of hip hop, only one artist has quietly shaped an entire generation of MCs (see: Common, Mos Def, Andre 3000) and also an entire generation of producers (see: Kanye West, 9th Wonder, Pharrell): The Abstract himself, Q-Tip.
On Feb 10, 2009, Mixtape King J.Period elevates his documentary style to new heights to pay respect to this incomparable hip hop icon with The Best, a comprehensive collection of Q-Tip’s music and production, new remixes, interviews, plus brand new tracks from an All-Star lineup of hip hop heavyweights—paying tribute to The Abstract’s legacy.
This unprecedented mixtape arrives on the heels of Q-Tip’s critically–acclaimed album, The Renaissance (released Nov 4), and urges a new generation of fans to take note of Q-Tip’s tremendous contributions to hip hop throughout his career. The Best also follows J.Period & Q-Tip’s November release entitled “Q-Tip for President”—an Obama anthem that received over 100,000 downloads surrounding the Presidential Election.
But nothing makes this mixtape more highly-anticipated than the all-star lineup of contributors—De La Soul, Busta Rhymes, ?uestlove, Black Thought, Talib Kweli, Pharoahe Monch, Consequence, Zion I, Skillz, Black Sheep, Kid Cudi, Blu—a first of its kind in the mixtape game, and a testament to the depth of influence Q-Tip has had on hip hop’s elite. No mixtape has ever boasted such a lineup, and no DJ has ever ventured to bring so many artists together for a single mixtape release. Hip hop’s unbridled creativity once thrived in these kinds of collaborations, and J.Period is determined to re-ignite that spirit
“I greatly appreciate the time and dedication J.Period has put into this mixtape,” say Q-Tip of the collaboration. “He has pulled together an amazing group of contributing artists, and I am honored that my music has been inspirational to all of them. The feeling is mutual.”
“Q-Tip has inspired a generation of hip hop artists and fans, and I am no exception,” seconds J.Period. “In an era of short attention spans, there is a reason why Q-Tip’s legacy has survived so long: like any great artist, his music has substance. I hope this tape shows why his name should be mentioned among hip hop’s all-time greats.”