50 Greatest Battle Rappers (Classic Battles): Cassidy vs. Freeway

Discussion in 'Battle Video Archives' started by gregrieke20, Jul 28, 2012.

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  1. gregrieke20

    gregrieke20 Well-Known Member

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    I am a graphic designer, and this is a follow up on a book I'm creating noting the 50 greatest battlers of all-time. By now, I know a good number of you are aware of it.
    RegularJoe, (a poster on here) offered to write the bios for each battler, and has done and amazing job. Each spread of the book will be set up so the battler's illustration is on one page, and his bio is on the other. (Much of the work can be found in the subforum here: The 50 Greatest Battle Rappers of All-Time - RapMusic.com

    This thread is about another section of the book that Teacozy (another poster on here) agreed to write. It is a "classic battles" section, listing some of the best battles throughout history.

    I will be posting them every so often on here, and I encourage feedback, criticism, other info, and whatever else you all can offer. All previous help has been great thus far.

    Below is some of the artwork that will be in this section, and one of the writeups Teacozy did (I feel he's doing an equally amazing job as joe has done). This is Cassidy vs. Freeway (There is also the list of the battles that will be in this section. Feel free to comment on the list as well)

    1980s
    Busy Bee vs. Kool Moe Dee, 1982
    Roxanne Shante vs. Busy Bee, 1985
    Grandmaster Caz vs. Melle Mel, 1987
    Percee P vs. Lord Finesse, 1989

    1990s
    Hieroglyphics vs. Hobo Junction, 1994
    Juice vs. Supernatural, 1995
    Eminem vs. Juice, 1997
    Eyedea vs. Peace, 1999

    2000s
    Cassidy vs. Freeway, 2001
    TheSaurus vs. Justice, 2005
    Serius Jones vs. Murda Mook, 2006
    Math Hoffa vs. Iron Solomon, 2007
    Dumbfoundead vs. Tantrum, 2008
    Aye Verb vs. Hitman Holla, 2012



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    Busy Bee vs Roxanne Shante, New Music Seminar, 1985



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    Eyedea vs. Peace, Scribble Jam, 1999



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    Serius Jones vs. Murda Mook, Smack DVD, 2006



    [​IMG]

    Cassidy vs. Freeway, 2001



    [​IMG]

    Hobo Junction vs. Hieroglyphics, Wake Up Show, 1994
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  2. gregrieke20

    gregrieke20 Well-Known Member

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    If you became a fan of battle rap following the rise of the late 2000s acapella leagues then you probably have a different perception of just who gets involved in the form. Seeing industry figures and famous rappers spitting verses competitively is a rare occurrence; the new school of rap battles is the exclusive domain of fledgling underground journeymen, relative unknowns, and amateurs, right?

    Not really. The involvement of the likes Canibus, Mistah Fab, and Royce Da 5'9 in actual stage battles seem like rare high points in an underground culture, but in reality, that overlooks the key component of rap culture: being “the best”. Hip-hop, even at its most vulnerable or empathetic, is normally an alpha affair, so naturally even signed artists still battle for rep and bragging rights – you just don't usually see it. GZA, Jay-Z, and DMX have all taken to hitting the ave to battle the hottest rapper anywhere. These sort of sparring sessions were an everyday thing, but as your career and profile got bigger, the risk of getting caught on film losing to a peer, or even worse, some unknown scrub started to outweigh the cash and rep you could accrue otherwise. Not everyone has the verve to go onstage and enter a battle competition for fun like RZA or Cappadonna did at the 1999 Blaze Battles since - like Charles Hamilton and rappers before him have learned - in the internet era, the wrong bit of footage could end your career. Not that these types of battles don't still happen - you just rarely ever see them. One of the most legendary signed rapper clashes was immortalized via the web: Freeway vs Cassidy.

    Taking place at Manhattan's famous Hit Factory studios, the battle stemmed from Swizz Beats and Jay-Z placing bets on which camp had the better up-and-coming rapper: Swiss' Full Surface or Jay's Roc-A-Fella Records. The footage itself is almost documentary-style; a fly-on-the-wall account of the whole session, from the braggy elevator ride to the actual 6 round affair.

    Or five-ish. As an MC, Freeway combined Philly's sing-song flow with a histrionic, urgent delivery that worked on tracks, but was, and still is, an acquired taste to rap fans. Cassidy, on the other hand, followed the other Philly template of straight bars, no chaser throughout, making him look like the victor in each round. Freeway blamed it on spitting his “best material” that morning on a radio appearance, but, there was more to the one-sided nature of the battle than that. Lyrics aside, Freeway was far more animated than the laid-back Cassidy, and, no matter how good your material might be, looking like you're trying too hard is a sure way to lose a battle in the eyes of most people. Sheepishly falling back from your previous shit-talking to repeatedly request a beat be put on is another way. Appropriate to the cypher feel of the battle, Free's requests to switch the format to his wheelhouse were ignored, with crowd-members from both sides maintaining that they had to spit acapella.

    A truly classic rap battle is defined by a number of things: it's historical importance, it's quality, or who was in it. Freeway vs Cassidy isn't so much defined by having two of Philly's upcoming best spit nothing but bars for 17 minutes or its snapshot of the bygone salad days of moneyed imprint labels, but it's demonstration of when a style clash becomes a straight-up bodybag. An argument could be made to the contrary, but the legacy of the battle remains; even after their respective career highs and lows both MCs are infamous for the battle and it's effect on their image, and if there's anything to learn from this battle it's that perception is everything.
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  3. BarZ.

    BarZ. Over Everything

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    i would put Murda Mook Vs. Jae Millz b4 serious Jones..
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  4. _gp_

    _gp_ _ C M Y K _

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    one of my favorite battles ever

    i used to listen to the audio of it on the way to school back in the day
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  5. _gp_

    _gp_ _ C M Y K _

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    i get gone off that 151, then call God, like, "come get me. one!"
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  6. BWallace85

    BWallace85 New Member

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    "If I'm starvin', I'm in your apartment, you a dead man/
    *CLAP* Turn ya Sixers hat to a headband/"

    "I aim for ya neck and catch you in the head if you duck" :jaydamn:

    In all seriousness though, Cass gets no stripes for this. Free was spittin' album verses.
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  7. uuuuuuuuu

    uuuuuuuuu DOUG MUNNIE ~EZmunnieCLIQ

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    i dunno man

    i really don't see how math vs solomon is classic, it's probably solomon's worst performance in the written era, and probably math's 2nd worst after the calicoe battle......
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