KXNG Crooked recently took it back to 2007, the year he “bar’d his way” onto the first ever XXL Freshman Cover.
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His induction also happened to arrive at the height of his “Hip-Hop Weekly” movement, a year-long endeavor that found him absolutely obliterating popular instrumentals. In fact, he recently attributed the series to his induction, taking to Twitter to reflect on making the cut back in 2007. “Being on the very first XXL Freshman cover trips me out because I bar’d my way onto that cover,” he states, via Twitter. “No radio songs, no co-signs, no major label, no politics just innovation and smokin other rappers instrumentals.”
After a fan inquires whether that formula would still apply today, Crook laments that the times have simply changed too drastically. “We may be a bit passed it because some platforms won’t post or allow you to post other people’s beats without permission but every now and then it couldn’t hurt to smack somebody’s beat around,” he advises, though it’s unlikely we’ll see a return to the mixtape era as we know it. Nor does it appear we’ll be seeing such a lyrically-focused XXL cover again, but that’s another story.
In any case, Crook’s stroll down memory lane was enough to bring his Slaughterhouse groupmates Royce Da 5’9″ and Joell Ortiz into the comment section. “I remember that cover @kxngcrooked,” adds Joell. “Think I bar’d my way on there too! Can’t remember.” Check out the message below, and show some love to Crook for keeping the bars alive to this day.