It’s been a long journey for T.I. and now that he’s fresh out of jail and set to release his new CD entitled King Uncaged I thought it would be appropriate to do a list of his best songs up to this point. While he’s been on rap’s radar since 2001 he wasn’t a real crossover hit until later and then almost lost it all when he got busted with all of those machine guns. But even with being off the scene for a year or so he has still been able to remain relevant and grow as an artist while many of his peers that came out around 2000-2001 have fallen off completely. Now like any list this is all based on my opinion and naturally yours may differ and that’s fine but don’t throw a fit about it. Now let’s see what I think are T.I.’s best songs.
24’s, Trap Muzik– I remember back when this song hit while I was in high school, T.I. already had a following because of I’m Serious and because I lived in North Florida where he was pretty big but this was the song that really grabbed my attention. It’s been what 7 years since this was released and you can still throw it on and get completely hyped up, the beat and the hook is just that good.
Rubberband Man, Trap Muzik– It’s a really happy sounding instrumental which sounds odd with a hook talking about having a nine in his right and a 45 in his other hand. This was a fairly popular single which helped T.I. further solidify himself in the rap game.
Let’s Get Away, Trap Muzik– Let’s Get away has a real smooth, laid-back type beat and is a nice break from the usual trap talk, even if it is a song about sex. Jazze Phae was on the hook so I assume that he also produced the beat.
Be Easy, Trap Muzik- The beat is laced with horns and some piano in the background and Tip has a nice flow on this track. This is another good one to ride out to maybe to slow things down after listening to 24’s.
U Don’t Know Me, Urban Legend– This was a big hit for T.I. maybe not with crossover appeal but certainly for rap fans this delivered in a major way.
ASAP, Urban Legend– ASAP might be my favorite T.I. song ever but I guess it depends on my mood. When you hear the instrumental it just gets stuck in your head and he raps with his usual braggadocio lyrics that make you believe him when he says he’s the King of the South
Bring Em Out, Urban Legend– Absolute club anthem during this year (2004 I think?) whenever this song came on the place went crazy. The Jay-Z sample along with an infectious beat was perfect and if you didn’t know the lyric from Jay’s original song you can recite it now.
What You Know, King– Another banger that was voted on of the best of all-time by VH1’s list of greatest hip hop songs (I know that’s not saying much). This was around the time T.I. was moving into movies like the one this was in, ATL. This was a mega hit and pretty much owned the spring and early summer. You can still put this on repeat today and it doesn’t get old.
I’m Straight, King– This was my other favorite track off of King. Tip tells you that he doesn’t need the rap game that you can take it all away and he’d go right back to trapping. It’s interesting to hear this now since jail time and almost losing it all changed his outlook.
Big Shit Poppin’ (Do It), T.I. vs. T.I.P.- It took me a while to start liking this song but then it grew on me. I’ll always remember it being played on ESPN all the time for some reason.
You Know What It Is, T.I. vs. T.I.P.– People either find this song catchy or annoying with the siren the comes into the instrumental. Personally I love this song and still play it all the time. T.I. wants to remind everyone that even with his success he’s still from the streets, damn he really wasn’t joking.
Ready for Whatever, Paper Trail– This is the only entry on the list from Paper Trail and it really is the best song on the album. It’s not that the rest of the songs weren’t good they were but I don’t think that any of them are better than the rest of the list. Whatever You Like had a nice beat but honestly I didn’t care for T.I. on the track and Live Your Life was good but again not his best.