This will be one of my longer posts. You can feel free to skip down to “best tracks” if that’s the only reason why you’re reading this. I’ve been planning on doing an article on XXXTentacion for the past week, but I wanted to wait until the music video for “SAD!” dropped. Can X be compared to 2pac, Malcolm X or even Jesus? Maybe. If he had got more time, we would know for sure. I’m not going to act like I’ve followed X from the beginning – matter of fact, someone showed me “Look At Me!” about a year ago, and I thought: Oh dear, another one of those “screaming rappers” with bad production and aggressive lyrics like Tekashi 6ix9ine.
But boy was I wrong. XXXTentacion, despite his young age of only 20, was a multi-genre genius. His childhood was rough according to himself, which resulted in him going in and out of prison, and sadly one of the things he is most known for is “hating on gay people”, “beating his ex girlfriend”, although, he has always denied it and hasn’t been charged for it – but hey, news reporters love a good headline, right?
So, people who haven’t researched X and gone in depth with his story, had labeled him and a “woman beater” and a “homophobic” (despite the exact same interview where people got it from, he clearly says that he’s not homophobic). I will post the notorious interview below, if you want to hear more about the old lesser known X from 2016 – keep in mind, I say the old X.
XXXTentacion’s impact and legacy
As previous mentioned, X was a multi-genre artist. A real artist. He did a lot more than just hip hop/rap (sometimes classified as emo rap), he did punk, rock, pop, R&B – yeah, you name it. He even said in the interview above that people shouldn’t be suprised to see him do a country song one day. That’s the kind of artist X was, he would explore and try new things. Although his music was in different genres, he had one main topic: mental health. He helped a lot of fans with depression and suicide thoughts.
On a business note, he would only do business with people he got to know and he would help them gain further success. X’s early distortion sound which has influenced artists like Lil Pump, Trippie Redd, Ski Mask the Slump God, Smokepurpp and 6ix9ine. When X died, a lot of artists and celebrities released phonecalls, private messages etc. of X, where you could hear and see, that he really cared for those around him. There is also a video of X giving advice to a fan, where you can see that he really cares – I will link that video below:
To me, there is nobody like him in the industry today. He connected with his fans on another level and the saddest part is that he was going through a period of changing. He wanted to become a better person and would preach it to his fans.
He went from an aggressive outspoken “thug” to a guy that wanted to change peoples lives for the better. He was suppose to do a charity event that weekend he got shot.
And to prove even further that he was going through a period of changing, his music video for “SAD!” showcase the new him (blue hair) beating up the old him (black and white hair). It was a very weird feeling seeing this released after his death, especially since it starts out with the old him in a casket. I will link the video below:
I will be the first one to say that where you are in the charts, doesn’t justify the quality of music you have released. But the last part with Biggie gave me goosebumps when I first read it.
XXXTentacion’s 10 best tracks
It’s not a fixed list and it can change – especially considering that there might be some tracks waiting to be released. But as of right now, this is my top 10 XXXTentacion tracks. Also, a special mention to Shiloh Dynasty, who X sampled on three of the songs on the list (#1, #5 and #10).
- Jocelyn Flores – dedicated to a friend of his that committed suicide in his hotel room
- Riot – his best song lyrically
- Vice City – to think that this was released when he was only 16 is mindblowing
- infinity (888 ft. Joey Bada$$) – both X and Joey went hard on that track + great production
- Everybody Dies In Their Nightmares – it seems like everything that Shiloh Dynasty touches, turns into gold when X is on the track
- the remedy for a broken heart (why am I so in love) – a sad love story, possibly dedicated to his ex gf
- Hope – he dedicated this song to the kids that died at the Parkland shooting, the bridge of the song is about changing the world for the better
- Slipknot (ft. Kin$oul & Killstation) – a chilled rap song, the features did surprisingly well
- changes – althought it’s a very simple melody, it’s actually X playing the piano. Another sad love story
- Carry On – Shiloh does it again
Honorable mentions: I don’t even speak spanish lol (ft. Rio Santana, Judah & Carlos Andrez) and hate will never win
I will leave this article with an Instagram post XXXTentacion once made: