Put your diamonds in the sky if you feel the vibe because it’s a holiday, A HOV Holiday! Hip-hop fans and Jay stans alike are in preparation and in full anticipation mode on the eve of JAY-Z’s album release date. OKAY HOV FANS NOW LET’S GET IN FORMATION!
The streets are watching as Hov and team have been keeping us on the edge of our seat since word got out about 4:44 on the way. Stans like yours truly have been paying homage to Hova talking about some of our favorite Jay-Z moments and ranking past albums on Twitter. My top 5 is always an no brainer:
5. American Gangster
4. Vol 1.
3. The Black Album
2. Reasonable Doubt
1. The Blueprint
But ranking the rest is sometimes a headscratcher, especially when it comes to Blueprint 2. Blueprint 2 was filled with some many gems for songs, mostly because this double disc album was filled with too many damn songs. Then it hit me, if I created my ideal Blueprint 2, it would probably be much easier to rank and easier on the ears. So here it is, my NEW blueprint for Blueprint 2, I did it my way! Manito’s Way.
Track 1 – Hovi Baby
One of the illest Jay tracks in my opinion. This would KILL as an intro especially with Just Blaze on the drums. Give the drummer some… no Ma really, give the drummer some.
Track 2 – All Around the World (featuring LaToiya Williams)
Making a smooth follow up to the intro, All Around the World accompanied by Latoiya Williams on the hook would be #2. The No ID beat makes your head nod but still rides out nicely. It’s a cool track to show how this Brooklyn boy is jetsetting all over to London, Japan, MIA and with a few Beyoncés too.
Track 3 – The Watcher 2 (featuring Dr. Dre, Rakim and Truth Hurts)
Nice little Dre produced song and it features pioneer MC, Rakim!
Track 4 – ’03 Bonnie & Clyde (featuring Beyoncé)
Classic track, can’t leave this one off for anything. Big hit, Jay and Bey’s first song together setting the precedent for many other dope collabs to come, Beyonce’s first solo debut, Kanye West produced, sampling Pac and Prince, the list goes on about how legendary this song is…
Track 5 – Poppin Tags (featuring Twista, Killer Mike and Big Boi)
A personal favorite song of mine from the first disc. Kanye tracks are always a win for me. Jay’s flow was so nasty, I loved every bit of it. The features were dope too with vets Twista, Killer Mike, and Big Boi blessing it. More importantly, it’s a song about one of my favorite things…SHOPPING!
Track 6 – Show You How
Even though this was a bonus track from the second disc this song deserves to be at #6 to follow up from Poppin Tags. It’s Hov’s braggadocio at it’s finest.
Track 7 – The Bounce (featuring Kanye West)
This Timbaland produced banger behind Show You How would be a great one. Hov continues to talk his shit and we also get to hear Kanye rap for the first time! HA!
Track 8 – Bitches & Sisters
Another legendary song, can’t believe this was only a bonus track. He spit knowledge about the differences between attitudes and behaviors in certain women without being chauvinistic full of bars and facts.
Track 9 – Some People Hate
This song is unforgettable. Jay-Z continues to establish his everlasting imprint on what he did to the game and how he’s a living legend. He straight up ATE this track alive! WOO! Me writing about it won’t even do it justice.
Track 10- 2 Many Hoes
A fun little bop about how niggas be wilding in club when you’re just trying to have a good time. I love it and I agree!
Track 11 – Fuck All Nite (feat. Pharrell)
Another one of my lowkey favorites from Disc One: “The Gift,” and it’s no surprise because everything Pharrell touches is gold. It has all my favorites on this song, a funky sample, vocals from Skateboard P, and dope metaphors and punchlines. I think this would be a dope song to put after 2 Many Hoes with the theme behind hooking up and the previous song about the club.
Track 12 – Meet the Parents
In this song, we have more storytelling greatness from the GOAT himself.
Track 13 – Excuse Me Miss (feat. Pharrell)
Another favorite from this album and from Jay-Z in general. A hit, a classic, a hint towards falling in love with Beyonce, I mean.. what more can I say? We seldom hear Jay-Z show his softer romantic side and this was the closest thing to a love song, aside from “03 Bonnie and Clyde,” we had from him until “Part II (On the Run).” “Gotta roll a tight jay to this one”
Track 14 – Blueprint 2
Another timeless song that should come towards the closing of the album in my opinion. He addresses Nas on this track in the midst of their ongoing feud along with many other foes and criticisms that have come Hov’s way. Greatness.
“Cause the nigga wear a kufi, it don’t mean that he bright
Cause you don’t understand him, it don’t mean that he nice
It just means you don’t understand all the bullshit that he write
Is it “Oochie Wally Wally” or is it “One Mic”?
Is it “Black Girl Lost” or shorty owe you for ice?”
Track 15 – Nigga Please
After mentioning haters and contradicting kufi wearers on Blueprint 2, Nigga Please would be a nice song to pick up from in which he talks about going all around the world and how he’s George Jefferson strolling on hoes everywhere. He’s flexing and finnessing right here, typical Jigga.
Track 16 – Some How Some Way (featuring Scarface and Beanie Sigel)
Fading out towards the end of the album this song would be a good one to lead towards the closeout. Jay-Z reminiscences on his hard times with Beanie Siegel and Scarface, Great way to reflect on where he’s come from after talking about all his success and fruits of the labors throughout the album.
Track 17 – I Did It My Way
This closed out the first half of the album and I still think this track should be the last one for my entire fantasy album. One of my favorites and in my opinion one of the best outros for Jay.
I understand the vision behind creating the double discs with the “The Gift and The Curse” but even Jay himself said there were way too many songs. I wonder what he would think of this one? What do you think? You can see how I did it my way with the playlist to the songs mentioned above below available on to hear on Tidal.
Some how, some way leave a comment for me.