10. Big Sean
Leading up to the release of his Hall of Fame album, Big Sean stopped by Hot 97 to spit a free for Flex that seemed to be unplanned at first, but Sean got in his groove quickly. Sean Don shows why he has one of the most versatile flows in the game, going off the top in a fiery yet melodic flow. The set of bars he rapped from the perspective of one of his biggest fans was a highlight.
"To make it out my hood is harder than leaving Argo"
Queens in the building, always. In the beginning, you could see Flex was possibly a tiny bit skeptical, but he came around quickly. It would've been hard not to, as Bronsolini dropped his usual crop of A+ food references and insane wordplay. Feeling right at home in Jay Z's "Hard Knock Life" instrumental, Action gives us yet another classic, in just another example of why he's one of the best freestylers in hip hop today.
"Shawty speaking Dutch to me, then she pass the Dutch to me / So many sons, I should file for fuckin' custody"
The Jet Life boss drops by Hot 97 to string together one of the best freestyles on the show, ever. While most of Spitta's catalog is laid back stoner anthems, he shows off a much more aggressive flow in the freestyle. One of the most slept on rappers in the game, he proves he belongs in any conversation about the best in the game right now. Plus, you know how much Flex loves his car talk.
"Time machine is my lyrics, same as my garage, you should see what I put in it."
7. Eminem & Proof
Two of D12's finest stop by Funk Flex to bless the mics with a few freestyles, Em and his longtime friend and collaborator Proof, alternating 16s to the tune of plenty of deserved Flex bomb drops. While it wasn't Marshall's best freestyle ever, or even close, it was the best he had for Funk Flex, which is still better than a lot of the competition.
"Me and Dre at the VMAs again, pissing off these lesbians and gays again"
6. Mac Miller
The flow Mac uses in this freestyle is absolutely bananas. Funk Flex even says, "A lot of you rappers aren't fucking with Mac Miller, nah." Mac is one of the brightest lyricists in all of hip hop and proves it in this instant classic, dropping all sorts of gems, weaving references in and out of each other effortlessly. This is also one of the best Funk Flex intros, with the boisterous "COME ONNN" just setting the whole session off right.
"I let these bitches dive in, but it's head first"
K. Dot stopped by Funk Flex to show us his "syllable hands" that are almost as fun to watch as his freestyle is to listen to. Lamar finishes one freestyle, only to hop all over Funk's sacred ad-libs trying to knock out a second verse, which was equally as impressive as the first. Kendrick is highly skilled in the art of the freestyle, so we hope there's plenty more of these coming in the future.
"Backpack raps with gats in it / don't get your cap peeled by the black menace"
As one of the best lyricists in the game, it's no surprise that Funeral Fab can kill a freestyle. But when it comes to Flex, the stakes are higher, and a seasoned vet like Loso thrives under that kind of pressure. He blessed us with this freestyle back in 2010 and hit us with his signature punchlines and wordplay.
"Raise your glass, now let's toast to what we didn't have / hustle plus muscle equals success, I did the math"
During a promo run for Kanye's My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy, Ye stopped by to see Funk Flex with recent GOOD Music signee Pusha T, where the pair spit some classic bars for the King of Digital. Pusha went full crazy eyes, as he always does with Flex, showing just how much harder he's going than the rest of the competition. Push's first verse would go on to make an appearance as "Blow" on his Fear of God project. Kanye then hops on the mic and freestyles a verse that would later become his song "Gorgeous", before sending it back over to Mr. Thornton for an early preview of "Alone In Vegas".
"Help my young bitch see her way through her Bachelor's while my old bitch went back to get her Masters / Same graduation, I was clapping in the rafters"
While it's probably not their most famous freestyle, it's definitely their best. The competitive nature between the four groupmates clearly drives them to go harder and harder each time we hear from them, and this was no exception. It's hard to pick a favorite freestyle from this session, but the frontrunner is Joell Ortiz, who slaughtered the beat and delivered a verse for the ages. While this squad may not be the most successful on the retail shelves, they are some of the most gifted in the cypher, without question.
"'Cause when you're too nice, you're underground / That's funny 'cause Eminem gave me money for not dumbing down"
1. Jay Z (Grammy Family)
Considered one of the best freestyles of all time, not just with Flex, but anywhere, this freestyle came in 2006 during his promo run for Kingdom Come. After Hov had temporarily retired, this freestyle hushed the doubters, who questioned whether he still had it. He took Kanye's "Grammy Family" instrumental and spit four of the hottest verses you'll ever hear live, or on wax. Not wanting to waste these A+ bars, portions of the session were later used in songs like "Most Kingz", "Operation Corporate Takeover", and his collaboration with Coldplay "Lost+".
"Hov got flow though he's no Big and Pac, but he's close / How am I supposed to win when they got me fighting ghosts?"
In this week's Top 10, we countdown the best Funk Flex freestyle sessions ever, because our list game is kinda serious outchea. Who you mad at? Us or yourself?
Forget mixtapes and albums, some of the hottest verses in hip hop come right from the offices of Hot 97 via Funkmaster Flex's famous freestyle sessions. Whether artists go right off the dome, kick something they plan on using later, or a combination of both, rappers always bring their A-game for Flex. His high energy demeanor and top notch ad-libs only add to the turnt up atmosphere, making every freestyle must-watch video. In today's Top 10, we look at the best of the best, counting down to our favorite Funk Flex freestyle session ever, plus a bunch that just missed the cut. GRRRRRR, we so digital.