Lloyd Banks has nurtured a reputation as a thug-rap stylist with a memorably gravelly yet whispery voice. But he’s also a thoughtful interview subject, as an interview with Paul Thompson in GQ magazine reveals. Beyond the usual beats about his relationship with 50 Cent and G-Unit, his new album, etc., there are some interesting notes about his songwriting process. “Most of my early records, even the freestyles, I still have the notebooks. Somewhere between 30 and 40 composition books and spiral books,” he says. “There have been times I was in the car and I could write a whole verse to the sound of the windshield wiper. I don’t really need too much. It could be a steady raindrop, and my mind will start to click because of the tempo.”
The yearlong #HipHop50 celebration has become a microcosm of the myths and reality that continue to define the culture.