You could check my name on the books
I Earth Wind & Fire’d the verse, then reigned on the hook
The legend of Dorothy Flowers proclaimed from the roof
The tale of a magnificent king who came from the nooks
Of the wild magnolia, mother of many soldiers
We live by every single word she ever told us
Watch over your shoulders, and keep a tin of beans for when the weather turns the coldest
The Lord is our shepherd, so our cup runneth over
Put your trust in the Lord, but tether your Chevy Nova
I’m spittin' this shit for closure
And God is my witness, so you could get it from Hova
To all you magicians that’s fidgeting with the cobra
I’m solid as a rock, ‘cause I came from a rock
That’s why I came with the rock
Then signed my name on the Roc
Draw a line around some Earth, then put my name on the plot
‘Cause I endured a lot of pain for everythang that I got
The eyelashes like umbrellas when it rain from the heart
And the tissue is like an angel kissing you in the dark
You go from blind sight to hindsight
Passion of the Christ, right, to basking in the limelight
It take time to get your mind right
Jay Electricity, PBS Mysteries
In a lofty place, tangling with Satan over history
You can’t say shit to me, الحمد لله
It’s strictly by faith that we made it this far
Low-key one of Jay-E's best verses and that's saying something. You can almost understand why he caught feelings over this song.
Nas' verse on "It's Mine" > any Jay-Z verse on the Blueprint
Hav killed it too, one of the few times he outshined P
Yeah Hav bodied that track.
I might be pushing it a bit to say Nas' verse is better than any of Jay's, but I always find myself revisiting Murda Musik way more than the Blueprint. The Blueprint is almost too clean. It feels so polished and well-tailored. All of the verses are technically impressive and the production is tasteful and cohesive, but I always find myself wanting to revisit the dark world and rugged soundscapes of Murda Musik more than Jay's heavily refined soul music.
Is it apples and oranges as others have suggested? Maybe to some extent. You can't say The Blueprint fails in any way by its own standards like you can some other ablums. It's the perfect realization of a particular sort of vision. That's why I understand why it's regarded it as a classic. It's Michael Jordan rap. But still. The essence of hip-hop is the gutter damn it. And that's Murda Musik.