Inferior lyricism. Unsophisticated beats. That shit is just too damn slow.
Hard as it is for anyone under 25 to believe, there was a time when Atlanta rap was the red-headed stepchild of hip-hop. New York's rap purists will look down their noses at anything, but they reserved particular scorn for rap from the South, and rap from the ATL in particular.
It's 2015, though, and the A's status as one of the capitals of hip-hop was confirmed long ago (depending on which year you're talking about, it might be the capital of hip-hop). It's like that now—you better go on and get the hump up out your back now. Atlanta is arguably the most layered music community in hip-hop. It cranks out at least three new stars every year. The producers create a new sound every other season. A new dance pops up every summer. If hip-hop's early days were informed by New York, and its '90s heyday involved a vacation to Cali, for the past 10 years it's been influenced more by the capital of Georgia than any other place in the world.
Hip-hop had always been alive in Atlanta, but it wasn't until Shy-D dropped "Atlanta That's Where I Stay" that people put away those Knicks and Yankees hats and started rocking Hawks and Braves gear. They gained a little more pride in using their own voice and identity.
What started out as a song about Atlanta's notorious "RED DOG" (Run Every Drug Dealer Out of Georgia) police unit, political corruption, street codes on the Southside of Atlanta wound up becoming a theme song for the entire region to relate to.
Rapping over little more than a bass line, Cool Breeze's prophecies, Big Gipp's analysis and Big Boi's shit-talking still define the city more than 15 years later. Crazy thing about the song is that only one Goodie Mob member actually spits a verse; the song's message is bigger than the group of artists on it.