Success is what you make it, take it how it come.
A half a mil in twenties, like a billion where I’m from.
An arrogant drug dealer, the legend I become,
CNN said I’d be dead by 21.
Blackjack…I just pulled an ace,
As you looking at the king in his face.

Pusha T, “So Appalled,” from Kanye West’s My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy, 2010

Back when I was younger,
Very ambitious, but often blinded by my hunger.
Some say I dream too big,
And my dream gon’ take me under.

Freddie Gibbs, “National Anthem (Fuck the World),” Str8 Killa EP, 2010 

Let bygones be bygones…but where I’m from,
We buy guns and more guns, to give to the young.

Kendrick Lamar, “The Heart Pt. 2,” from O(verly) D(edicated), 2010

I don’t like thugs, I don’t like nerds,
I don’t like myself and I hate bein’ disturbed.

Sean Price, “Critically Acclaimed,” from Statik Selektah’s 100 Proof (The Hangover), 2010

Wouldn’t it be nice if life was sort of like a dream,
And everything wasn’t really what it seemed?
What if everything you ever wished for was in reach,
And you could learn everything your school didn’t teach?
Wouldn’t it be nice if the banks didn’t fuck up the loans,
And people ain’t have to move out they homes?
With no GM or AIG…and for that matter no cancer or A-I-D?

Bun B, “So Close, So Far,” from Statik Selektah’s 100 Proof (The Hangover), 2010

We all seem to stumble, planning our own demise,
Getting the big picture, and making it wallet-sized.

Kendrick Lamar, “Growing Apart (To Get Closer),” Overly Dedicated, 2010

…But when we got a good thing, can’t appreciate it,
Just like the chick I had on my team, was everything on my wish list.
Spendin’ holidays, Valentine’s and Christmas.
Now I’m in the club looking at other broads, like:
“I gave up home-cooked meals for this shit?”
“I gave up all them back rubs for this bitch?”
The whole damn thing is bass ackwards…

Phonte, “Too Late For Us,” Babygrande Presents Beat Down Vol 1, 2010

Whatever you goin’ through, could always be much worse,
Don’t make a mistake, mistakin’ your blessings for a curse.

Joe Budden, “Welcome to Real Life,” Mood Muzik 4: A Turn for the Worst, 2010

And when we holdin’ a Tec, we put a hole in your neck.
Equippin’ you with a permanent T-Pain vocal effect.

Celph Titled, “Eraserheads,” Nineteen Ninety Now, 2010

Y’all place value on your wheels and your automobiles,
And never acknowledge your children’s diminishing skills,
Or that they continue to fill all the prisons they build.

Skipp Coon, “4.28.1967, Pt. 2,” Sophomore Slump Vol. 1: Independents Day EP, 2010

I gotta make a move, I gotta do this now,
If they don’t know your dreams, they can’t shoot ‘em down.

J. Cole, “Too Deep For The Intro,” Friday Night Lights, 2010

The kid’s got the Juice and the OJ flavor–
OJ For Mayor cause I’m killing this rap shit,
White Bronco flow, the glove and the mask fit…

Danny!, “Get Down,” Where Is Danny?, 2010

Day in and day out we do the same thing,
Tryina find the joy in our repetition.
Always complainin’ about the routine and the mundane.
But let me stop to remind y’all bout one thing:
Come hell or high water you can count on the sun
Always shinin’ in its untamed glory.

Phonte, “Greater Than the Sun,” from Zo!’s SunStorm, 2010

You never question when you get the blessings,
So don’t get vexed when your life is stressed.

Shad, “Rose Garden,” TSOL, 2010

Every day is like a blank canvas,
Carving my initials in the planet like I brand it.
Hand-picked to live this life we take for granted,
Like a child with an upright bass, we can’t stand it.

Blu, “The Day,” from The Roots’ How I Got Over, 2010

Funny how the love be fake…but I ain’t stressin’.
Thankful for the love that’s genuine…appreciate the blessin’.

Busta Rhymes, “Superstar,” from Ghostface Killah’s Apollo Kids, 2010

I told her, “I got the chips if you got the dip.”
She said when I dip, that I better be equipped
and keep my hand on her hips…

Ludacris, “Be With You,” from David Banner & 9th Wonder’s Death of a Pop Star, 2010

Nigga this is personal, you can’t get no whiff of this
I rolled this shit myself and Imma smoke it til the end of it

Curren$y, “Daze of Thunder”, from the upcoming Return to the Winners Circle mixtape, Video, 2010

I had to travel light speed to dodge that black cloud
Rainin’ on my parade.
Sun shinin’ but there ain’t enough shade.

Blu, “Seasons,” Video, 2010

You can’t take the heat, get ya ass out the kitchen
Matter fact, take ya ass back in there and wash the dishes

Royce Da 5’9", “Deadly Melody,” from Black Milk’s Album of the Year, 2010

If you can’t live, you dying,
You give or you buy in.
Keep it real or keep it moving,
Keep grinding, keep shining.

Raekwon, “Gorgeous,” from Kanye West’s My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy, 2010. More from Chef…

I don’t like thugs, I don’t like nerds,
I don’t like myself and I hate bein’ disturbed.

Sean Price, “Critically Acclaimed,” from Statik Selektah’s 100 Proof (The Hangover), 2010. R.I.P!

If sleep is the cousin of death, then death is the cousin of sadness;
Murder’s the cousin of madness, love is the cousin of that bitch.

Ill Bill, “Secrets Worth Dying For,” from DJ Muggs & Ill Bill’s Kill Devil Hills, 2010

If we gotta dumb down our style and ABC it, then so be it,
Cause nowadays these kids just don’t give a shit ‘bout lyrics.
All they wanna hear is a beat and that’s it,
Long as they can go to the club and get blitzed,
Pick up some chicks and get some digits.
And the DJs playing them hits, “Oh, this my jam, this my shit!”
We don’t know a word to a verse, all we know is the chorus,
Cause the chorus repeats the same four words for us.

Eminem, “Syllables," 2010

You can’t take the heat, get ya ass out the kitchen
Matter fact, take ya ass back in there and wash the dishes.

Royce Da 5’9", “Deadly Melody,” from Black Milk’s Album of the Year, 2010

My heart is ‘We Are the World,’ my penis is P.E.
But my balls are Avatar, you could see ’em in 3D.

Pharoahe Monch, “Let U Live,” from Consequence’s Movies on Demand, 2010