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The run Drake has been on over the past decade is one that hasn't been seen in hip hop. It's been a little over ten years since the release of his 2009 mixtape So Far Gone which catapulted him into the mainstream. Today, over a decade later it seems like every track he throws out or jumps on as a feature instantly becomes a chart-topper. When an artist reaches this level of superstardom, every song they put out starts to get viewed as "mainstream" due to their popularity, making it difficult to categorize certain records as B-Sides or as being underrated.
Despite this, throughout Drizzy's career, there has been a good amount of records we feel have been bit overlooked, or haven't quite got the warranted attention. With that said, we've put together a list which highlights 11 of the most underrated tracks of Drake's career thus far. From the start of his career to now. Enjoy.
1. "Come Winter" (2006)
Track 14 on Drake's first official mixtape Room For Improvement was an early showcase of his potential as a songwriter, as the Canadian rapper flexed his prowess as a storyteller. Conceptually, the track's narrative is based around the fickle emotions and relationships that develop based upon the time of year. In signature Drake fashion he vividly details how his emotions were impacted in these "cuffing season" situations and gives an analysis of this particular woman's intent over a smooth, sample-based instrumental. "Heartbreak Drake" was in full effect.
2. "Killer" (2009)
This record is the only Drake and Nipsey Hussle collaboration out there and is one that stands the test of time. Drizzy and Nip delivered one verse each, allowing both MCs to provide raps that spoke directly to their drive as up and coming artists. So many memorable lines on this one, so we'll just leave you with a line or two from each.
Drake: Even when I'm not functioning in tip-top shape, I can bench as much as hip hop weighs
Nipsey: Before rap my last name was my lifestyle, And when I visualize success it looks like right now/What was once gray skies is now white clouds, And I did it with the ones that y'all said was not the right crowd
3. "U With Me" (2016)
Views is by far the most critiqued album in Drake's catalog, due to the hype and excitement the project had heading into it. Despite this, there were some really dope cuts on this album, with a few of them being some of Drake's best career works. "U With Me" is one of those records, pulling from DMX's classic "How's It Goin Down" and "What These B*ches Want," this joint effectively highlights Drake's versatility as an MC, but also how effortlessly he can merge styles.
4. "Free Spirit" Featuring Rick Ross (2011)
Drake and Rick Ross have teamed up for some great music over the years, and to this point, they've yet to disappoint. "Free Spirit" was released as a promotional track leading up to the release of his sophomore LPTake Care. Both artists floated on this one, trading luxurious and boastful raps over a lavish instrumental provided by "40" that sampled Sade's "I Will Be Your Friend." Joint albums in hip hop have become a bit oversaturated in recent years, but a collaborative project from these two would surely be appreciated.
5. "Thank Me Now" (2010)
"That's around the time that your idols become your rivals/You make friends with Mike but gotta A.I em for your survival"
"Thank Me Now" serves as an appropriate outro to Drake's 2010 major-label debut. On a project slightly toned down from his 2009 tape So Far Gone, Drake was inching closer to perfecting his style as an artist. On this song, Drake went into his bag as a lyricist and examined his place in the game. Some of his most impressive work is found here, with topics foreshadowing his future career while setting the bar high for him to live up to.
6. "Survival" (2018)
7. "Fall For Your Type (Same Mistakes)" (2010)
"Fall For Your Type" eventually became a Jamie Foxx record featuring Drake, but the O.G. cut with Drake holding it down solo, ranks as one of his best R&B-driven efforts. With the signature cold and atmospheric production from Noah "40" Shebib, Drake croons and ponders why he's constantly drawn to a certain type of woman. Another prime example of Drake's wide-ranging attributes artistically, with relatively strong vocals here and great raps. Dope record.
8. "Star67" (2015)
The 2015 mixtape If You're Reading This It's Too Late is a 17-track release chock-full of bangers. As quiet as it was kept compared to the past four, this project has aged better than most albums that dropped that year. "Star67" is a joint where Drizzy takes us back to his days on the come up, vaguely touching on the schemes he and his team were running to make money. With a few subjects being covered on this one, it feels like a stream of consciousness, jumping around to different points of his life. One of the hidden jewels on this tape.
9. "Two Birds One Stone" (2016)
When "Two Birds One Stone" was released, there was some heavy push-back from fans due to the references to Kid Cudi, who was dealing with some personal issues at the time. Shots at Pusha T and Kid Cudi aside, this is one of Drake's most inspired lyrical exhibitions, immediately giving you the energy of his "time and location" classics. Drake's writing on this joint was top-tier and while the confrontational element shifted the conversation around the track, the boy was in his bag on this one. Lots of replay value here.
10. "Goodnight & Goodluck" (2008)
Drake is far from a stranger to rap beef, as throughout his career he's been in more than a few bouts. Whether they be through subliminal or more direct spats like the ones he's had in recent years, Drake tends to engage more than most mainstream MCs do in this era. One of his first battles on wax took place back in 2008 when he was beefing with a fellow Canadian artist that went by the name of Aristo. Drizzy ended up throwing a couple of tough diss records his way, but "Goodnight & Goodluck" was a great indication that he was more than capable of holding his own when challenged.
11. "Furthest Thing" (2013)
"Furthest Thing" is one of those records that point to Drake's relatability as an artist. This is something that most musicians attempt to maintain throughout their careers, especially when saying relevant is what allows an artist to build their core audience. The vast majority of Drake's music is about himself, which some may see as a detriment for his work, but his ability to articulate directly what he's going through is what separates him from many of his peers. "Furthest Thing" is undoubtedly one of Drake's best records and Jake One's beat switch near the end just takes it over the top.
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