Over the years, everyone from DMX to Lil Wayne has referenced Transformers and Optimus Prime. It’s as if hip-hop and the comic book series walked hand in hand. With “Transformers: The Last Knight” hitting theaters on June 21, we decided to take a look at all the times Optimus, Bumblebee and the gang have shown up in rap.
Dr Dre ft Hittman – “Light Speed”
One of the first acts signed to Dre’s Aftermath, Brian “Hittman” Bailey’s appearance on the classic ‘2001’ marked his debut to the world as Dre’s protégé with several features on the album.
“Makin’ fools “Retreat!” like Megatron and Starscream”
Wu Tang Clan – “Impossible”
The Wu is famous for their infatuation with Asian mythology and sci-fi storytelling. RZA reminds us of his lyrical prowess here, rapping “a space knight like Rom, consume planets like Unicorn, blasting photon bombs from the arm like Galvatron.”
Blackstar – “Twice Inna Lifetime”
Critically acclaimed by press, Mos Def and Talib Kweli collaboration left us with one of hip hop’s most revered albums. Talib reminds us here why he’s one of the greatest.
“You pickin’ the wrong time, steppin’ to me when I’m in my prime like Optimus, transformin’, from rookie of the year to veteran.”
Chris Brown ft Lil Wayne & Swizz Beats – “I Can Transform Ya”
Co-written by Jason “Poo Bear” Boyd known now for his mega hit collaborations with Justin Bieber, Skrillex & Diplo. “I Can Transform Ya” was one of the biggest hits off Chris Brown’s “Graffiti” album and marked a strong comeback for him amidst a time of controversy in his career. Wayne shows out here, “Cîroc and lime, give it a lil’ time, And she can transform like Optimus Prime.”
DJ Jazzy Jeff and the Fresh Prince – “The Magnificent Jazzy Jeff”
Classics like these remind us of hip hop’s roots in the relationship between the DJ and emcee. Here the Fresh Prince praises the skills of Jazzy Jeff, ”Now here’s a story that should not be forgot about the day my DJ turned into an autobot.”
DMX – “Get At Me Dog”
The debut single from DMX’s “It’s Dark And Hell Is Hot” was his second highest peak on the Billboard charts behind “Party (Up In Here).” Even the grittiest of rappers seem to have an affinity for the Transformers franchise. “And when it’s on we transform like Optimus Prime, I’ll form the head, roll out let’s make it happen.”
Chamillionaire – “Mo Scrilla”
Chamillionaire’s Mixtape Messiah series had a huge impact on the hip hop community when it ran from 2004 to 2009, leaving us with hits like “Mo Scrilla” and saw a huge collaboration with the likes of TI, Pastor Troy, Three 6 Mafia and more.
Gnarls Barkley – “Transformer”
The title says it all on this one as Gnarls delivers line after line of Transformers references.