Full disclosure: I think Tupac is the most overrated rapper of all time. Conceptually, I feel like everything he said was extremely linear and simple enough for mass audienced to digest but not quite interesting enough for me to ever get into. His persona was always bigger than his music and his fans are some of the most rabid of any artist always seeking approval for his music (frankly, the fact that Universities across America are teaching courses on his lyrics doesn’t mean anything to me). But fuck all that jazz. My opinion doesn’t mean anything How does he stack up against the other heavy-hitters (Jay, Nas and Big) statistically?
First and foremost, he doesn’t rhyme as well. This is a simple fact. Not that Big/Jay/Nas are extremely similar rhyming-wise with Tupac a few steps below:
Tupac, at a rhyme density score of 0.235 is a notch below BIG, Jay and Nas who scored at 0.29, 0.30 and 0.30 respectively. It’s apparent that:
1) The score of 0.30 (which is pretty close to the overall average of 0.28 in our database) is a pretty good baseline necessary where we can argue that technical proficiency is met. Anything over or under by a significant amount should be carefully looked at contextually. We can start saying Good or Bad based on the 0.28-0.30 score.
2) Tupac just isn’t that good, technically speaking. He’s a notch below the Big 3 objectively speaking.
He had great energy on his tracks but to me his linear raps and weak rhyming make it too hard for me to ever really get into his work. Don’t shoot the messenger! Just link my work and help me build traffic.