The discussion has been going on via social media (twitter specifically) over the past couple of days. Is Mode 9 the greatest Nigerian rapper of all time? Is he still the GOAT? While a lot of hip-hop fans have argued that status has never been in doubt, a lot of the more mainstream and, dare I say, commercial thinking audience are arguing that Mode 9’s music is not bringing him as much commercial success as say, Olamide, MI, or Phyno. On average, his name is not as recognizable among mainstream fans as many others. But does that make him any less of a great?
One thing that has been levied towards hip-hop heads in Nigeria is the bandwagon mindset. They all argue for Mode9, but don’t even really listen to him or know his catalog in details. They just do it to be in the ‘hip-hop heads clique’, or to feel like they are deeper than their commercial music loving counterparts. Now this isn’t true for all, but it’s certainly true for some.
Here’s what’s impossible to argue against in our opinion. Mode 9 was the one rapper that did it big in Nigerian hip-hop when it wasn’t cool to be a rapper; when there wasn’t as much success, not as much mainstream acknowledgment and if we’re being very real with ourselves, no one touches him to date lyrically. Think BET Cypher. Historically you can say he took hip-hop to a much higher level in Nigeria. So what makes Mode 9 not the GOAT? Well check out some of the tweets we’ve seen over the past few days of what people are saying, and of course drop your thoughts.
Jst putting it out there: Mode 9 is a Nigerian rap God, He’s a KING, One of the best in Africa. Your FAV rapper listened to Mode 9 to learn
— Omo Jesu (@tosinadeda) March 7, 2016
Don’t know any Mode 9 song, but for Olamide , every song is a hit, back to back… https://t.co/hqPxUmoZaH
— Mr. Aye Dee (@MrAyeDee) March 4, 2016
MI came to change the game… But then, Mode 9 invented the game. Olamide is trying to tamper with the game, Ice Prince tryna Clown it.
— Kehinde Wiley (@ThisIsKennys) March 7, 2016
Please, how much did glo give to Mode 9…compared to what wizkid is getting now? its a simple question
— OlaPretty (@MzOlamma) March 7, 2016
Mode 9 was good, just that good music do struggle in naija.
— Olugbenga Boluwaji (@OBA_ohlugy) March 7, 2016
Modenine (Mode 9) spelt backwards is Eninedom which makes no sense just like your lame argument about whether or not he’s the best. He is
— Imoh Umoren (@ImohUmoren) March 7, 2016
MODENINE IS A LEGEND, A GOD AND STILL THE BEST RAPPER TO COME OUT OF AFRICA.
— Osagie Alonge (@OsaGz) March 7, 2016
Modenine is Nigeria’s Nas is a funny joke. He’s nothing like Nas! Not Close one bit! There are many rappers like him abroad but he’s no Nas.
— Mavado (@nosablaq) March 7, 2016
You are still arguing wwda Mode9 is d best rapper or not? Go and listen to Death Blow and ask Ruggedman.His career neva recovered frm d blow
— AYOKUNLE Odekunle (@Oddy4real) March 7, 2016
Mode9 has been rapping for like 'thy kingdom come' I never really cared until MI & Jesse Jagz entered the scene.
— IG: Templehillz (@DaTvinciCode) March 1, 2016
Y'all be making noise about mode9 rap…how many of u bought his mixtapes
— Raphael (@BadMan_Ralphy) March 7, 2016
"Rap wise, I wear you out like running up a hill
Fatigue is not the issue you get tired by 4 wheels"
Mode 9 is not your mate please
— Restructure Nigeria (@briandark) March 7, 2016
So what are your thoughts? Mode 9 still the GOAT? Did that ever change? Is the commercial success of MI, Phyno, Olamide etc somewhat downplaying the significance of Mode9’s contribution to the game?