(Toronto) Hip Hop You’re the Love of My Life


Because the vast majority of my readers are from the right other side of the border, I try to keep the blog as geographically agnostic as possible. But allow me just once to really rep for my adopted home town by presenting to you, my dear readers, the Top 10 Toronto Hip Hop songs you should know and probably don’t.

1. Saukrates & k-os – I Wish I Knew Natalie Portman

It’s not an overstatement for me to say that Sauks and k-os are two of the most gifted artists in Canada, let alone Toronto so it’s really no surprise that a collabo between them would be dope. Plus don’t we all wish we knew Natalie Portman? I know I do.

2. Marvel – Throw This Ball

Funny story: Although I have loved this song since the first time I heard it – that beat just kills me – I somehow managed to work with Marvel for an entire year without ever realizing who he was. I just kept thinking to myself, this dude’s voice is so familiar….

3. Saukrates – Father Time

A fucking classic. That’s all I can say. And it always works to cure my writer’s block.

4. Kardinall Offishall – Bakardi Slang

Those of you who love the expression panty meat have Kardi to thank for it. He has a gift for making up lingo that sticks and Bakardi Slang is full of them. Any of you who have ever spoken of chatted with me know that my speech is littered with Kardi-isms – now you can hear where they came from.

5. Maestro Fresh-Wes – Just Swinging

This is a pretty obscure pick, even for me. Maestro has a lot of way bigger songs than this. But I love this song for the following line:

“Torn between two lovers
Feeling like a fool.
I just fucked Judy’s mother
And Judy’s in night school.”

7. Page – I’m Still Fly Remix feat. Drake

Okay the video is corny as shit – I cannot even watch it. But I like this song. And it’s probably the only one on this list that was recorded after 2000 so there you go.

8. Big Black Lincoln – She Was

I’m pretty sure that at some point in time I’ve schooled you guys on BBL but if I haven’t, get caught up. This is one of my all-time favourite songs ever and Saukrates’ falsetto cannot be beat.

9. Michie Mee – Jamaican Funk

The gear and hairstyles alone in this video kill me dead and remind me of the scary girls who used to pull my hair and threaten to fight me in club bathrooms but the song itself showcases perfectly the link between reggae and hip hop that is the cornerstone of Toronto hip hop as far as I’m concerned.

10. Rascalz – Northern Touch

This is slightly questionable because the Rascalz are not from Toronto. But they did turn down a Juno and basically accused the Junos of being racist so they’re okay in my book. Plus the song includes almost all my favourite Toronto artists and there’s even a Melyssa Ford sighting so can we really go wrong?

Honourable Mention: Masta Ace Top 10 List

Okay yes technically Masta Ace is not from Toronto but the song is produced by Saukrates and production is what makes a song right? Besides which, this is one of the greatest diss tracks ever and I can’t really in good conscience make a top ten hip hop anything list without including it.

So there we have it. A quick 101 on Toronto hip hop – consider that my Valentine’s Day gift to you. Am I missing any hidden musical gems from your home towns? Share with me in the comments.

Oh and since we’re talking about the t.dot today, Toronto people come out to 30 Elephant’s Family Fun Day at E-zone (120 North Queen Street). It’s hosted by Kardi and featuring music by Starting from Scratch so it’s sure to be a good time even if you don’t have a family. You can get the details and ish right here.

Also – if you’re looking for some primo baby-making music for tonight, check out the homie DJ Agile’s mixtape Lov Lane Pt. II. Don’t blame him if you wind up pregnant though.

bag lady. digital nerd. beauty junkie. shoe whore. i'm a sucker for big words and box-fresh kicks. know a little bit about a lot of things and have something to say about everything.

Comments 24

  1. Blackbuttafly says:

    sigh…I remember when guys from Toronto would come to Hamilton….ooh! Big city man. Little did I known that the only reason they were in Hamilton was cuz they were banned from being the the GTA. Lol

    I can’t believe you left off Dream Warriors. I used to tape them off the radio. And speaking of radio, R.I.P to CKLN

    1. max says:

      The list originally included Ludi but it somehow got lost….hmm I wonder if that means I don’t really have 10 songs on the list? You guys know how I am with counting.

      But yeah – Dream Warriors is essential.

  2. Yes, yes & yes.. all day long. Nice tribute Max.

    Much love from Steeltown. <3

  3. Blackbuttafly says:

    Yo…..I forgot all about northern touch…that 3rd dude…in LOVED his verse….

  4. Jinx Moneypenny says:

    LOVES IT. Dope Canadian hip-hop always gets love from this Canadian girl.

  5. emti says:

    this post was the best valentine’s gift EVER
    thanks maxie

  6. Dewan says:

    Thanks for the T.dot (is that what the cool kids say?) hip-hop education; I love the city. But how about a primer on Carabana someday? Not too detailed, just include lots of ass pics!

    1. max says:

      A Caribana primer is not a bad idea. I’ll definitely do one this summer.

    2. Starita34 says:

      Speaking of weekend and ass… *nudge, nudge* *wink, wink* how was your weekend sir? 🙂 Your girl singing Aladdin? lol

      1. Dewan says:

        Lol. It was pretty tame because her mom stayed with us for the weekend. So she still has her anal virginity intact.

        1. Starita34 says:

          Mother in laws are such caulk blocks wonderful visitors. Still, I’m liking the sound of “pretty tame”-nothing like a hand over the mouth to stifle the screams so mommy dearest doesn’t overhear 🙂

  7. Sam Sharpe says:

    Cool list, but….where’s Solitair’s ‘Easy 2 Slip’?…that beat is noyce!

    …don’t worry Maxie, I’ve provided a link so your readers can check it out for themselves…


    1. max says:

      I actually don’t know that song. I must be slipping either that or Solitair is banned from my list for deleting me on Facebook

  8. Starita34 says:

    I’ve actually heard this one before and like it: Kardinall Offishall – Bakardi Slang.

    There’s a KC local they have been playing the ish outta lately, Krizz Kaliko (is it mandatory your name be mizspullahduh?) http://youtu.be/cJi3zgVE7WI
    It’s simplistic but catchy. One of those songs you hate yourself for humming later, but you stay singin it. It’s got Tech9, who of course is KC’s pride and glory. I love this one of his: http://youtu.be/NVP7fu67WWk YouTube Tech9, he has a lot of good songs.

    Kriizz Kalliko’s “Vitiligo” is quite good IMO http://youtu.be/c7R_miVEjKc

    Happy Valentine’s Day anyway Maxilicious *mwauh*

  9. RedLady821 says:

    Really enjoyed this post. Happy Valentine’s Day Max!

  10. Cheekie says:

    Oooh, I got some ish to listen to this week. And I love k-os. His “Superstarr Pt. 0” joint is one of my alltime faves.

  11. I’ve always been a ‘Kardi fan. And that “Natalie Portman” tune KNOCKS.

    I’ve meant to get into Saukrates, but…I be slippin’ n’ shit.

    Great post!

  12. Berriblk says:

    Nice! I love music, so I’ll have to do some listening sessions this week.

  13. Diggame says:

    What about the playa Choclair?

    1. max says:

      I didn’t forget him. I just had too many songs to choose from. But he’s represented in Northern Touch so he’s good.

  14. keisha brown says:

    i know im sooo late…

    i LURVE i wish i knew Natalie Portman. the song has been on regular rotation in my bb

    you took me way back with some of these (northern touch!!!).

    way to continue the education 😉

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