Brooklyn rapper Talib Kweli may have commented on Hip Hop being “laughable” on his Prisoner of Conscious record “Upper Echelon” as he rapped, “rap been laughable over the last year or two.” But according to the Black Star emcee, he’s actually quite the optimist when it comes to the genre.

Kweli’s lyric on “Upper Echelon” is just one of a number of topics the rapper addressed during his interview with The Real Hip-Hop.

“I think rap has always been laughable,” said the rapper. “Truth be told, I’m far more of an optimist when it comes to Hip-Hop than that lyric would suggest. That’s me being competitive and taunting the competition by calling it laughable. Really, I enjoy a lot of Hip-Hop music. Is there a lot of laughable rap? Sure, I just try not to pay attention to it.”

Later in the interview, Kweli placed rapper/producer RZA, who he worked with on his album cut “Rocket Ships,” with the likes of Kanye West, J Dilla, and Pete Rock as one of the top producers in rap.

“RZA is the truth, man. RZA definitely belongs up there with all them cats you named,” Kweli revealed. “It’s a dream come true to work with him. RZA is somebody I consider a friend. I’ve known him as a friend for a while but we never worked on a record that’s been for me. I’ve done things for him on soundtracks and stuff but this was special.”

To read Kweli’s full interview, visit

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