Now Joe wanna be like Bob,
Bob got it goin’ on with no job.
And everything Rob got he got from Robin,
And everything she got, she got ho-hoppin’.
My girl Jilly wanna be like Jackie,
Fat rope chains and I think that’s wick-wacky.
Tom and Dick wanna be like Harry,
Little do they know he’s bitin’ on Barry…

Salt, “Expression,” from Salt-N-Pepa’s Blacks’ Magic, 1990

They say signs of the end is near;
I wonder…can I walk a righteous path holding a beer?

Common, “Resurrection,” Resurrection, 1994. More from Com…

There’s four developing stages in the art of hip-hop,
And most of them developed from the snap, crackle and pop.
The first was the usage of an actual band,
The second was a drum machine made by a man,
The third was the human beatbox and percussion,
The fourth in line was samplin’ and the book of rhyme bustin’.

Afrika Baby Bam, “Book of Rhyme Pages,” from The Jungle Brothers’ J Beez Wit The Remedy, 1993. More from the Jungle Brothers…

I mastered The Art of War before a nigga read Sun Tzu,
Third degree black-belt, master of Gun-Fu.
Pop pills, smoke weed, even get drunk too;
And you do what you can, and I do what I want to.

Sean Price, “Like You,” Jesus Price Supastar, 2007. More from P!

Been tested, ain’t fail: I’m tried and true.
When it’s all falling apart, my pride’s the glue.
I felt at times worthless…
Pulled shifts with shifty crime merchants,
Stained hearts, brainwashed by mind serpents.
The fact I’m still here, it’s clear it’s divine purpose.

Ka, “Day 912,” from Ka and Preservation’s Days with Dr. Yen Lo, 2015. More from Ka…

Attention! Follow directions real close:
Keep out of reach of children, beware of overdose.
Too many milligram, but what made a iller jam?
My rhyme is the rhythm of thoughts that kill a man.
Ideas for the ear to fear, might split ‘em;
He’ll never forget ’em…he’ll rest in peace wit ’em.
At least when he left he’ll know what hit ’em:
The last breath of the words of death was ‘The Rhythm.’

Rakim, “Let the Rhythm Hit ‘Em,” from Eric B. and Rakim’s Let the Rhythm Hit ‘Em, 1990. More classic lines from the greatest of all time…

I ain’t the captain of the yacht, but I’m on the boat;
I ain’t acting what I’m not, knowing that I don’t.
You niggaz acting like you will, but I know you won’t.
Man, I read between the lines of the eyes of your brows,
Your handshake ain’t matchin your smile…

Beanie Sigel, “Feel it in the Air,” The B. Coming, 2005

I keep the ugly rhymes in the cellar of my cranium,
Where no one can see them or hear cries for freedom.
Chopped up raw thoughts the only thing I feed ‘em,
Release the beats from the cellar when I need ‘em.

MF Grimm, “What a Nigga Know? (Remix),” from K.M.D.’s Black Bastards, 1993. More from Grimm…

I do my thing like B.B. King, my microphone is named Lucille.

Sadat X (fka Derek X), “Feels So Good,” from Brand Nubian’s One for All, 1990. RIP to blues legend B.B. King

They been calling me a criminal for so damn long,
Start to believe they right…and they gon’ make me do something wrong.
You see me in the hood, you think I’m trynna rob you.
I’m just talking to you when you think I’m trynna con you?
No matter what, they gon’ call me a crook.
So you think I give a fuck if I look like a motherfuckin’ criminal?

Sticky Fingaz, “Look Like a Criminal,” from Onyx’s Against All Authority, 2015. More from Sticky…

I guess it’s true what they say: 
When you’re too far gone, ain’t no turning back.
And coming from the Compton, mack, that’s a fuckin’ fact.

MC Eiht, “N 2 Deep,” from Compton’s Most Wanted’s Music to Drive-By, 1992

I never understood Planned Parenthood,
Cause I never met nobody planned to be a parent in the hood.

Kanye West, “The Joy,” from Kanye West and Jay-Z’s Watch the Throne, 2011. More from Kanye…

Want to know my occupation, home location, and means of transportation?
The correct combination unlocked your placenta…
I got a cellular phone with a rubber antenna,
And a 3-story house, drive a 4-door Ac.
Favorite song of all time? Mobb Deep’s ‘Hit It From the Back’

Ras Kass, “Drama,” Soul on Ice, 1996. More from Ras Kass…

God works in different ways and it shows,
And everybody knows: love comes and goes.

Ed O.G., “Love Comes and Goes,” from Ed O.G. and Da Bulldogs’ Roxbury 02119, 1993