Retrospective: Best Andre 3000 Verses

After our recent ATLiens vs Aquemini debate, I began thinking about the legacy of Outkast and the lyricism of Andre 3000, one of the greatest MCs of our time, in my opinion. Today, I wanted to look at some of his best verses and break down why they are his best, along with some of the best lines from it. Let's get started, shall we?

*Goodie Mob featuring Outkast- Thought Process(final verse)

-Andre has been infamous for killing just about every guest verse he's had and this was no different. Released on Goodie Mob's classic "Soul Food" album, this verse has Andre spitting some of his most poignant lyrics at that point. Perfect way to end the song, as Andre has the final verse.

Standout Lyrics:
Now as an Outkast I was born/ wasn't warned of the harm/ that would come to meet me like Met Life/ but yet life/ done sent me through a lot of ups and downs like it ain't nothin/ like elevators, but I ain't the one that's pushing the buttons/

*Outkast- ATLiens(Verse 2)

-The title track off their classic 2nd album features Andre in a whole different lyrically. He floats over the smooth track while putting forth some of the best wordplay hip hop had ever heard. From the opening line to the very end, as well as his half of a verse in the final verse of the song, Andre set the tone for the entire album.

Standout Lyrics:
Now, my oral illustration/ be like clitoral stimulation/ To the female gender/ ain't nothing better, 
let me know when it's wet enough to enter/ If not I'll wait, because the future of the world depends on/
If or if not the child we raise gon' have that nigga syndrome/

*Outkast- Return Of The "G"(Verse 1)

-The opening song of "Aquemini", backed by a trunk rattling beat and a smooth hook, kicks off with Andre angrily dismissing critics, haters, and even the small minded fans and artists in the industry. Armed with an unconventional flow and rhyme pattern, Andre vents his frustrations while crafting one of his greatest verses.

Standout Lyrics:
Let's talk about time traveling/ rhyme javelin/ something mind unraveling/ get down...
Return of the gangsta/ thanks ta/
Them niggas who got them kids,
that got enough to buy an ounce/
But not enough to bounce/ them kids to the zoo or to the park/ so they grow up in the dark/ never
Seein' light/ 'til they end up being like/ yo' sorry ass..

*Outkast- Gangsta Shit(final verse)

-Now, Andre on a song called "Gangsta Shit" would seem virtually out of place, but on an album like Stankonia, it certainly fit. Andre comes on last, after a song that was essentially your standard ride out in the car track, and kills everything in sight. He doesn't necessarily talk about the regular "gangsta shit" as the other MCs do, but his verse is easily the best and the hardest on the song. Andre was in a different place creatively during "Stankonia", but this was his way of showing that he's one of the best and that no one should forget it.

Standout Lyrics:
Outkast wit a K, yeah them niggas are hard/ harder than a nigga trying to impress God/ we'll pull your whole deck, fuck pulling your card/ and still take my guitar and take a walk in the park/ and play the sweetest melody the street ever heard/ now bitches sucking on my nouns and I'm eating their verbs/

*Outkast- Aquemini(2nd Verse and 3rd verse)

-The title track from Outkast's 3rd classic album features both him and Big Boi in a deep train of thought, but Andre is absolutely out of this world on the 2nd verse. The level of lyricism, combined with the internal rhyme schemes and nearly spoken word flow, allow Andre to paint a picture unmatched. His half of the 3rd verse is also ridiculous, as Andre speeds up his flow and provides 8 bars of immaculate wordplay. These two verses might actually be his best work of all time.

Standout Lyrics(Verse 2)
More than a hobby/ when my turntables get wobbly/ they don't fall, I'm sorry y'all, I often drift/ I'm talking gift/ so when it comes you never look the horse inside its grill/
of course you know I feel/ like the bearer of bad news/ don't want to be it, but it's needed, so what have you/ now question: is every nigga with dreads for the cause?/ Is every nigga with golds for the fall?/ Naw, so don't get caught up in appearance/ It's Outkast's Aquemini, another black experience/

Standout Lyrics(Verse 3)
My mind warps and bends/ floats the wind/ count to ten/ meet the twin/ Andre Ben/ welcome to the lion's den/ original skin/ many men/ comprehend/ I extend/ myself so you go out and tell a friend/ sin/ all depends/ on what you believing in/ faith is what you make it, that's the hardest shit since MC Ren/ Alien can blend/ right on in with your kin/ look again, cause I swear I spot one every now and then/ It's happening again/ wish I could tell you when/ Andre, this is Andre, y'all are just gon' have to make amends/

*Outkast- Babylon(Verse 2)

-Andre has two great verses here and while verse 1 is amazing, along with the opening "I came into this world, high as a bird", it's the second verse that really digs deeper into a concept, speaking on sex from the view of being religious to an extent, while illustrating his scene looking back on his younger experiences. Lyrically, it isn't Andre's strongest performance, but the picture painted more than qualifies it as one of the best.

Standout Lyrics: 
Oh now its on from here on out/ put yo hands in the atmosphere, if you know what I'm talking about/ now if too harsh, then walk on out/ and I'll see you on the next song/ they call it horny because its devilish, now see we dead wrong/

*Outkast- 13th Floor/Growing Old(Verse 1)

-As I stated in our Aquemini vs ATLiens debate, ATLiens is my favorite hip hop album ever. This album is where I turn to when debating if Andre is one of the greatest MCs of all time or not. This verse features Andre at his absolute best, in conscious thought looking at the state of the world, as well as the state of the music industry at the time. This is one of my all time favorite Outkast songs, and hip hop songs period.

Standout Lyrics:
I bet you never heard of a playa with no game/ told the truth to get what I want, but shot it with no shame/ take this music dead serious while others entertain/ I see they're making their paper so I guess I can't complain/ or can I? I feel they're disrespecting the whole thang/

*Outkast- Ain't No Thang

-Released off their debut album "SouthernPlayalisticCadillacMuzik", this single features both a hungry Andre and Big Boi. Andre has 2 verses on the song, and while his first verse is definitely great, it is the 3rd verse where he shines the best. Andre wasn't at that "ATLiens" or "Aquemini" level of lyricism yet, but he murdered this verse with flow and precision.

Standout Lyrics
On the concrete/ remember when we ran deep/ remember at the party when we served them niggas dandy/ they know not to test us, test me, do me, try me/ tripping with that drama, my Beretta's right beside me/ one is in the air and one is the chamber/ y'all ask me what the fuck I'm doing, I'm releasing anger/

*UGK feat Outkast- International's Player Anthem(1st Verse)

-Now as I said earlier, Andre tends to kill every guest verse of his, but on this song? He ascended to a new height. The verse starts off with Andre seemingly finding the woman of his dreams with his boys trying to talk him out of a possible wedding/marriage. Simple premise, but Andre goes above and beyond, crafting one of his most fluid and quotable verses ever.

Standout Lyrics
So I typed a text to a girl I used to see/ saying that I chose this cutie pie with whom I wanna be/ and I apologize if this message gets you down/ then I CC'ed every girl that I'd see-see 'round town/ and hate to see y'all frown/ but I'd rather see her smiling/ wetness all around me, true, but I'm no island/

When I shoot the moon/ high jump the broom/ like a preemie out the womb/ my partner yelling too soon/ don't do it! Reconsider/ read some liter-/ature/ on the subject, you sure?/ fuck it, you know we got your back/ like chiroprac/-tic,
if that bitch do you dirty/ we'll wipe her ass out in some detergent/ now hurry hurry/ gon to the altar/ I know you ain't a pimp, but pimp remember what I taught ya/

Devin The Dude feat Snoop Dogg and Andre 3000- What A Job(final verse)

-This track was greatness with three legendary names together. Andre at this time was doing a number of guest verses in 2006/2007, but this was by far one of his best verses ever. Andre talks about the industry at the time when downloading had truly begun to affect sales more and more. He also drops a story about a couple he met that came up listening to his music. One of Andre's most solid verses ever with a narrative, storytelling and honesty combined.

Standout Lyrics
We work nights, we some vampires/ niggas gather round the beat like a campfire/ singing folk songs, but not no Kumbaya my Lord/ you download it for free, we get charged back for it/ I know you're saying, they won't know, they won't miss it/ besides, I ain't a thief, they won't pay me a visit/ so if I come to your job/ take your corn on the cob/ and take a couple kernels off it that would be alright with you...hell naw, yeah, exactamundo/ but we just keep recording and it ain't to get no condo/

*Andre 3000- Chronomentrophobia(Verse 2)

-The "Idlewild" album is often overlooked. Split into essentially half Big Boi solo songs and Andre solo songs, we got to see a bit of each MC personally, similar to the "Speakerboxxx/The Love Below" album. Here, Andre sings the first verse, but raps the 2nd verse, which showcases Andre in a space of almost complacency with music and life in general seemingly.

Standout Lyrics
Lord, be havin' mercy on my soul/I'm havin' the impression that my life gonna be a bowl/ of cherries/ but it's very/ hard for me to cope/ got tired of being broke/ this ATLien ain't' got no time to sit and mope/ made up my mind while ya'll made up yo beds/ on a cold wooden floor is where I lay my head/

There are plenty of verses that I didn't include here. Andre has so many. From "Da Art of Storytelling Part 1" to "Jazzy Belle" to "Mighty O", his catalog of great verses is damn near endless. Where does Andre 3000 rank on your all time MC list? I hope highly.



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