Big Boi - "Daddy Fat Sax" x "Last Call"

For one reason or another, many hip hop heads have always considered Big Boi to be living in the shadows of fellow OutKast member, André 3000.  Not to take anything away from Three Stacks—as far as rhymesayers go, he’s as innovative as they come—but I’ve always viewed Big Boi an equal member of the groundbreaking duo and actually consider his half of the group’s 2003 double album, Speakerboxxx, to be better from a hip hop standpoint than Dré’s The Love Below.  While André has always been more in the vein of a male Lauryn Hill and is really the only artist other than Hill who can pull off singing and rapping, Big Boi has always kept the group grounded in hip hop sensibilities.

I view their group dynamic in a similar light that I see Black Star.  Similar to Mos Def and Talib Kweli, both OutKast emcees are some of the best ever when taken separately, but together they are absolutely unstoppable and have produced what I consider to be three classic albums (not including the double-album which was basically two solo releases packaged together to sell more records).

When I listen to Big Boi’s official solo debut, Sir Lucious Left Foot: The Son of Chico Dusty, I am unsurprised by the quality sans-Andre 3K. Antwan Patton still has that same rapid-fire delivery and witty lyricism that helped elevate the ATLiens to the halls of hip hop’s elite.  He rhymes over familiar TR-808 driven basslines with instrumentals sampling funk, soul, and electro music in the Atlanta hip hop tradition (and for those of you who are fans of well done self-sampling, “Daddy Fat Sax” is nearly Nas-esque).

But ever noticeable isn’t what he says or what the music sounds like.  Ever noticeable is a gaping absence of his partner-in-crime, André 3000.  Neither the previously released Grammy-nominated track, “Royal Flush,” featuring 3000 and Raekwon nor the 3K-assisted “Lookin’ 4 Ya,” previously slated for Sir Lucious Left Foot, were included on the final tracklist.

I understand why he did it.  This album was meant as a big “Fuck You” to anyone who ever said he was riding on André’s coattails (who’s only credit on the album is the production for “You Ain’t No DJ”). Often people forget emcees that were members of groups when considering their top emcees.  Think about it, the five emcees consistently listed in people’s top five (in no particular order) are Jay, Biggie, Pac, Nas, and Em—all solo artists.  I’d have to throw in a few other names, particularly Scarface, but a lot of people only tend to name him because he released so much material outside of his Geto Boys roots.  Often some of the best emcees such as Big Boi as well as Wu-Tang’s Ghostface and Genius/GZA are left off those lists because most of their classic discography cannot wholly be called their own work.

Sir Lucious Left Foot is a further demonstration that Big Boi can put out a near classic album by himself.  It sounds very similar to Speakerboxx and the only album better than it this year has been The Roots’ How I Got Over, but that doesn’t mean that a hip hop fan can’t be sad for what could have been. It has now been over a decade since Stankonia, the last full OutKast collaboration, was released and the hip hop community has been starving for more material from these hip hop luminaries. Sadly, with reported infighting between the two, it may be some time before we see another OutKast album.  In the meantime, we should still celebrate these two gems from Big Boi's solo discography, while patiently waiting for the day the ATLiens will return to us.  "Daddy Fat Sax" is the opening track off of his latest album and features Nas-esque self-sampling, while "Last Call" is the closing track off of Speakerboxxx and is good enough to actually make me appreciate Lil' Jon (as much as I can).

Peace, Love, & OutKast,
Voodoo Child

Big Boi - "Daddy Fat Sax"
Big Boi - "Last Call" (Feat. Slimm Calhoun, Lil' Jon & The Eastside Boyz, & Mello)


  1. people who say 3 stacks is better than big boi is not really listening to big boi. to me its 1a and 1b, with both rapper fitting in either spots

  2. My thoughts precisely. I feel like Big Boi and Dré are both equally necessary elements of the OutKast equation. Both do there thing on nearly every track they've ever graced.