January 7 1998


The Wake Up Show [876 votes]
Hot 97 New York [875 votes]
Stretch Armstrong & Bobbito Hot 97/ Columbia University NY [203 votes]
Tim Westwood London, England [178 votes]

Honorable Mentions: WUSL Power 99 Philadelphia PA, Vancouver Canada Morning Drive, 92.3 The Beat Los Angeles California, 88 Hip Hop Channel 88hiphop.com, KMEL Radio San Francisco, Master Mind Show Toronto, Canada

This was an interesting category because so many radio shows are heard locally and are virtually unknown outside their market.. Then you have a handful of kids who's reputations have traveled around the globe..
The Wake Up Show gets much props because they gathered votes from all corners of the globe. They got votes from Japan, Sweden, London.. You name the place The Wake Up Show got votes.. It was interesting because while it's true that the Wake Up Show is internationally syndicated.. They still picked up votes from places where they're not on air... We even got votes from places like Singapore and Australia.. That means that there must be Wake Up Show tapes floating all around..It probably has a lot to do with all the legendary freestyle sessions the show has been known to have... Sway, King Tech. DJ Revolution, Carmelita and the entire crew deserve major props because they've managed to keep the hip hop pure and devoid of musical politics and still they've managed to flourish and master the business end of things. These guys have a hip hop clothing line {big Game Hunter], a website [www.wakeshow.com], a management company, a record label, and a production company.They even had a big tour this past summer [ The Wake Up Show Tour]where they gave much of the proceeds to a scholarship fund...

From day one they were about the business of keeping it real and working a system that has unfortunately worked and exploited us... For a lot of folks who may think Sway & Tech are newcomers don't be fooled..They're OGs in this game.. Sway started out as an emcee and can be heard catching wreck on the mic on the group's first ep where they sported the name Flynamic Force..and later on their second lp which was released under their own names Sway & King Tech..Sway got busy.. Nowadays Sway can be heard putting it down every morning as the host of KMEL's morning show called The Breakfast Club.. It's good to see those within hip hop making it... King Tech was a B-Boy as well as a dj.. Folks from the Bay may recall King Tech as being a member of the SF Ballot Breakers back in the early 80s...Yes to this day the kid can still break dance.. He was also someone who would go around winning dj competitions.. He's got skillz.. Nowadays he lets DJ Revolution who is one of the nicest kids on the turntables do the spinning chores while Tech co-hosts the show. In addition he makes beats and does remixes and production for all sorts of artists.. Currently the Wake Up Show crew is working on a project with Quincy Jones' son QDIII..
So what's next for these guys to conquer.. I say outer space...These guys are gonna be more then just world wide.. Look for the Wake Up Show to come to a Galaxy near you soon..

Rivaling The Wake Up Show is Hot 97 in New York where Hip Hop Lives..As quiet as kept Hot 97 exists because of the ground work and subsequent success of 106 KMEL in SF during the early 90s..[this is where The Wake Up Show started] Hot 97's Program Director Steve Smith came to NY from The Bay Area where he was PD for a radio station in San Jose..He came to the Big Apple with the knowledge and confidence that Hip Hop on commercial radio could work...because he saw and heard it happen in The Bay Area.. He did what so many PDs before him were afraid to do.. give NY, The birth place of Hip Hop a radio station that embraces rap music.. He and his staff definitely took things to the next level.. Hip Hop does indeed live there..

I wound up having to combine all of Hot 97s votes because so many people voted for all the different air shifts.. Funkmaster Flex led the pack with votes.. Like the Wake Up Show he was getting votes from all over the planet which means he too is being circulated via tape as well as being syndicated.. Angie Martinez got a lot of votes as did Dre & Ed Lover who do the morning show.. They get props for taking their rap careers to another level.. Remember Dre & Ed were in that old crew called Original Concept... Folks were also dropping votes for veteran dj Red Alert..Even Kid Capri who doesn't spin on Hot any more got votes... Yes like any success story Hot 97 gets its share of criticism for being too commercial..But like it or not they put down way more then most.. Props to them because they manage to keep it real and still stay in business..

Stretch & Bobbito are legendary... Their hip hop show which still comes on Columbia University's station is consistently winning awards.. If ya wanna hear how it should be done..check these guys out and give them even more respect.. Yes they now put it down on Hot 97... But they've managed to take the underground and put it above ground..

Finally we have DJ Tim Westwood.. I've only heard his shows via tapes..and I liked what I heard..From what I understand he's the man overseas in the UK..And people defintely know his name here in the states.. I'm surprised no one on this side of town has picked him up.. Major props to Tim for representing hip hop to the fullest...


Cannibus [1272 votes]
Mase [528 votes]
Missy Eliott [115 votes]
BIG Punisher [103 votes]

Honorable Mentions: Mos Def, Whoridas, Jurassic 5, Company Flow, Xzibit, Latyrx

Again Cannibus made a major impression on all of us in '97.. He ran away with rookie of the year honors.. and unlike most kids who start off hot..Cannibus looks like he's gonna be around for a while.. Let's hope so cause I like his style...

Mase had a good showing...I don't care what anyone says about him being too commercial....I like Mase... He's his is own man.. He raps like he talks and that's ok.. However, unlike Cannibus I can see Mase getting played real quick unless he changes up a bit..... It'll be interesting to see how both these guys do their sophomore years...

Missy Eliott was over looked in a major way.. I guess a lot of associate here with R&B and singing more then we do hip hop..I see her as being a major force to reckon with in years to come.. why? Because she can write and she's versatile..

BIG Punisher seemingly came out of nowhere.. But he put it down for our Latino brothas and sistas within hip hop.. His hit song 'I'm Not A Player' helped get considered for the Rookie Of The Year Award.


Erykah Badu [981 votes]
Mary J Blige [842 votes]
Usher [176 votes]
Missy Eliott [137 votes]

Honorable Mentions: Ginuwine, Blackstreet, Dru Hill, 112, Yvette Michelle, Adrianna Evans...

Why have this category?, many of you asked... Because we're dealing with Hip Hop and Hip Hop Culture.. In every culture there is music..Rapping is just one of the musical expressions...Lets face it there are many artists who can rock the mic singin' who have just as much as someone rocking the mic rappin'.. It's hard to explain and even harder to categorize..but simply put.. some artists just have hip hop flava..like Erykah Badu... When she first dropped her single 'On & On'..folks were lit... Who is this jazzy singer rocking the hip hop beats?, folks would ask. By the time her album Baduism dropped she had a whole lot of kids checking for her including Common, Busta Rhymes, The Roots and of course Dre from Outkast who his now the father to her newborn child.. Erykah had a banner year.. so much so that she knocked Ms Mary J Blige off her throne...

While it's true Mary didn't beat out Ms Badu...her rough & rugged approach to singing will always have people seeing her as the Queen of Hip Hop Soul.. Like Erykah Mary also had a big year.. It was reflected by your votes... Usher was a teen heartthrob.. But this crooner was no stranger to singing over hip hop beats.. If folks recall he started off by singing over the beats that were used by Black Moon's Who Got The Props.. Usher had a big year and yes he had much flava on the hip hop tip..As for Missy Eliott.. think Supadupa Fly, Sock It To Me and her performance on L'il Kim's Lady's Night and need I say more...She definitely kicked the hip hop flava...


Wu-Tang Clan [509 votes]
Puff Daddy [421 votes]
Roots [274 votes]
KRS-One [234 votes]

Honorable Mentions: Busta Rhymes, The Fugees, Redman, Rakim, Mack 10, Ice Cube

This category should've been BEST HIP HOP PERFORMER.. Well that's how most of y'all interpreted the question.. Here Wu-Tang won this one hands down.. I know that when they rocked the Wake Up Show Tour in LA earlier this year they left folks speechless.. They were off the hook.. Apparently they got busy while traveling with Rage Against The Machine..It's hard enough getting those 9 guys in one room much less to knock out a good performance.. Again more props to Wu-Tang..

Puff Daddy may not be the world's greatest rapper but he can pack a house and get busy on stage.. In spite of all the foul language He's known to use on stage..at his concert.. I have to agree with all you folks who voted.. that Puff was indeed one of the better performers in '97...

The Roots especially during the Smoking Groove's Tour help remind people that performing is major part of hip hop.. Everytime I see these guys with their 4 piece band.. they gets down and wreck shop.. They deserve the recognition..

Blastmaster KRS-One is pound for pound the best when it comes to rocking the stage.. He doesn't use any elaborate sets or gimmicks.. He doesn't show up on stage with 50 of his homeboys.. It's just him and a mic and maybe his hype man Will and KRS-One does like Rakim.. He moves the crowd .. He moves the crowd into a total frenzy...


The Firm..'The Firm The Album'[457 votes]
Wu-Tan Clan 'Wu-Tang Forever'[321 votes]
Puff Daddy ' No Way Out'[278 votes]
Rakim 'The 18th Letter'[112 votes]

Dishonorable Mentions:Boot Camp Click, EPMD, KRS-One, Mase, LL Cool J, Grave Diggaz...

This was an interesting category to look at.. In most cases we had established artists who put out a product and didn't meet our high expectations.. i.e. Rakim & Wu-Tang.. In Rakim case many unfairly expected to not only duplicate the success and the rawness of Paid In Full..but he was expected to surpass it.. Personally I feel that would've been literally impossible... But apparently a whole lot of other folks didn't.. Hence Rakim made the list.. The same scenario plagued Wu-Tang Clan... Again people expected them to surpass what was a stellar effort on their first lp 36 Chambers.. That's a hard album to out do..They got heated on for coming out with a good album.. and not an exceptionally great album...

Now on the other hand The Firm left a lot to be desired..We're talking about the cream of the crop within hip hop putting out a lackluster performance... Nas, AZ and Foxy Brown... How could they miss the mark? Very sad.. Yes they deserve the honors on this one... Finally we have Puff.. But you knew people were gonna go for him...


Puff Daddy [2506 votes]
Mase [411 votes]
Master P [215 votes]
Notorious BIG [201 votes]

Dishonorable Mentions: Missy Eliott, Foxy Brown, LL Cool J, Wu-Tang Clan, Busta Rhymes, Bones Thugs & Harmony...

There's a couple of ways to look at this category.. either the artists are really overplayed.. or there's some sort of hip hop backlash towards those who've become successful.. Hip Hop is strange that way.. We are so quick to turn on artists who manage to make it too the lime light.. Of course Puffy won in this category.. Look at his vote total.. He got a whooping 2500 votes.. But then Puff was everywhere in '97.. He was on every remix.. on every song and he was always number one so we constantly heard him.. Yes Puff's victory in this category could be seen as testament to his greatness in '97 :) Of course his side kick Mase was also on the chart.. We heard him everywhere...Finally we have Biggie.. like Puff and Mase he was on every song and on every record.. There was no escaping Bad Boy in '97..

Master P was another kid who blew up in '97.. Everywhere you went you heard him moaning like a constipated cow..uuughn.. I know it was annoying to hear it.. But it was a great gimmick on his part.. Now everyone from here to kalamazoo knows Master P...


Puff Daddy [1214 votes]
Mase [685 votes]
Master P [411 votes]
Missy Elliot [176 votes]

Dishonorable Mentions: Will Smith, LL Cool J, Magoo & Timberland, Young MC, The Firm, L'il Kim...

Again the honors go to Mr Puff Daddy.. Because of all the additional comments accompanying the votes I would say there's a major backlash against Puff.. Is it jealousy or is it because he's done something wrong? Puff has done what he always done..make hit records.. I say there's a strong contigent of people within hip hop who hate to see someone suceed.. Buts that's a whole other topic. We'll save that for another topic of discussion.. Wherever there's Puff.. There's Mase... So he was right alongside him...

Next up was Master P... Folks say his beats are weak and he can't rap worth a hill of beans.. But you better not show up at a party without your Master P records.. Unlike Puff P doesn't get much airplay.. yet everywhere you go people are bumpin' his songs.. Something about him.. I can see why people would lash out and say he's wack.. How can he be so successful with what he's doing...? For the record I'll say I know Master P.. and one thing about that kid is he hustles.. He works his product.. He's always out and about selling tapes.. He goes to neighborhoods where most people won't go and he sells his stuff.. P tapped into that untapped group of folks that everyone ignored..uuuugn..


Rakim [920 votes]
KRS-One [411 votes]
2Pac [390 votes]
LL COOL J [380 votes]

Honorable Mentions: Notorious BIG, Too Short, Tribe Called Quest, Chuck D, Ice Cube and EPMD

Congratulations to Mr Rakim.. no one is more deserving of such an award then the R... As was mentioned earlier, Rakim's 5 year hiatus had everyone fiending for his return...When he finally came back, his smooth voice, searing lyrics and cool persona let everyone know just why he's the very best that hip hop has to offer... One thing I recall Rakim saying is that he takes his time to write each rhyme... He never rushes... It's important that he feel good about his presentation... That whole approach is so refreshing at a time when it's obvious that people are just trying to collect their money by doing any ole thang...Rakim;'s rhymes are pure poetry in motion Rakim winning a life time achievement award speaks to the long term impact he's had on hip hop.. His Paid In Full album is frequently cited as one of hip hop's all time best albums.. Songs like 'Eric B For President', 'Paid In Full' and 'I Know You Got Soul' are land mark tracks that are always found within people's all time top ten list...He alone exemplified an era in hip hop where everyone set out to 'get paid in full'..Remember he and Eric B were the first rap group to ink a million dollar record deal..They did this when they dropped the album 'Follow The Leader'..Look for the R to have impact on hip hop in the days,months and years to come.....

Feel free to comment on the result of these Davey D End Of The Year Votes... We will print your letters in the letters to the editor section.. send email to kingdave@sirius.com ... Again I wanna thank everyone for their participation....

written by
Davey D

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