Atlanta may be the home of trap rap, but not everyone wants to be a d boy—just ask B.o.B. At #9 on our infamous Hottest MCs in the Game list, he's definitely the least likely to end up behind bars. This ... is a good thing.
"He's completely original and once again proves that not all rappers need street-cred," says Rob Markman, XXL's Deputy Editor. "Bobby Ray's spot on the list is well-deserved."
The rapper's also gained a no. 1 hits on Billboard's Hot 100 chart with the pop-driven track "Nothin' On You" featuring Bruno Mars which sold more than 2 million copies. Rumor says Lupe Fiasco turned down the track during his tiff with Atlantic Records, but one man's trash is another's treasure.
B.o.B duplicated that success with "Airplanes," featuring Paramore's Hayley Williams, which spent a staggering 26 weeks on the Hot 100, peaking at #2. It even spawned a remix with a reinvigorated Eminem, which helped launch Marshall Mathers back into the public eye.
"He gets accused of "selling out" or going too pop by people who were hooked on his earlier mixtapes," says VIBE Senior Editor Clover Hope. "But beyond those cheesy songs he's really a talented MC and he's obviously had a breakout year, #9 makes sense."
But is B.o.B feeling some of that disapproval himself?
"People hate each other because we feel others don't care about us," the Atlanta MC tweeted yesterday (October 18). "And we don't care about others if we feel other people hate us."
On second thought, we honestly have no idea what he's talking about but thankfully Bossip.com's Managing Editor Janee Bolden does understand the rapper.
"Putting B.O.B. on the 10 Hottest MC's list is bound to create some controversy," she says. "He's fairly new on the scene, but he has a different kind of buzz than someone like Drake. They both make successful pop music, which is why it definitely makes sense to put him on the list. No disrespect, but as much as we respect him for juggling rapping and singing with producing and playing live music (who else does that in rap?) you also have to admit he's probably more well known for those catchy ass hooks than for his verses as an MC."
Ultimately, despite B.o.B's pop success, the kid can spit and that will give him longevity.
"B.o.B has had an incredible year," concludes Markman. "He's had a no. 1 and a no. 2 Billboard single, toured across the world, performed in front of U.S. President Obama and is one of 2010's most notable breakout artists."
Think B.o.B should rank #9? Think he should be higher or ... even omitted? Tweet us at @MTVRapFix or tell us in a comment below!