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Hip-hop artists covering songs by other hip-hop artists. Why aren't there any? Are there any??
Hip hop is so referential and self-referential though, and it has its foundations in sampling, plus so much of it is about an individual's voice or flow, that straight-up covers would probably just be a little weird.
Like when Elzhi covered Illmatic (http://elzhi.com/news/2011/elzhi-releases-elmatic-lp/), but they're rare and usually in homage to classics.
Covers probably don't happen so much in rap because it's competitive by nature. Freestyles and unofficial remixes are a big part of mixtape culture though, which I guess is a similar idea. Worth checking old Lil Wayne tapes for some classic examples;
Sent myself down the Weezy mixtape rabbit hole now. Send help if I'm not back in a few days.
Listen to it almost as regularly as the original :)
That's all there is to say really.
Puff Daddy also did PE 2000: https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=nZ6nAlmzKv4
Cuz they can bust some sick covers when they need to...
Snoop does Paid in Full in Old School
Probably cos he was the man.
Snoop: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=s8rGpHqM_q4 (La di da di - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zM0KAh5w7Rs)
Mos Def: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jwPf3rSXjEk (Children's Story - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NXCXVWjSbik)
Tame One: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NKyhwaRvss0 (Moment I feared - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1CK6KE969lE)
I have a Nearly God version of that somewhere rapped by Martina Topley-Bird.
It isn't all that good, but I don't really like the original.
at rap shows for rappers to put on someone else's (rap) tune and rap along to said raps?
rather than both at the same time.
but beats and choruses at least
e.g. Wu-Tang members doing parts of ODB tracks.
Sometimes it's the beats, sometimes it's the phrases, sometimes it's a verse and sometimes a little more.
As I say, hip hop and rap is so referential and self-referential that you'll always get snippets here and there anyway, as tributes and clever nods for the audience's benefit.
but for a full, straight-up cover? It's very unusual compared to rock or folk or jazz or blues, where the idea of 'standards' is a much bigger part of their lineage.
Black Steel (Public Enemy): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9ZJTM03UByU
Lyrics of Fury (Eric B & Rakim): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GDiakScZVPo The second comment down is excellent too.