Although, lots of artists could make a case for the title, it quite likely 2019 found Fat Joe settling nicely into the role of hip-hop’s storyteller. Between narrating his hilarious reaction to hearing Eminem diss Nick Cannon on his “Lord Above” song to lining his press tour with absolute gems, it’s high time to start appreciating Joey Crack’s presence in the game. Which other person has earned the respect of damn near every active rapper, from the streets to the boardrooms?

“We originally squashed the beef, me and 50, he gave me his hand and was like peace for Chris Lighty,” remembers Joe, referencing the beloved Violator co-founder, who passed away in 2012. “It was a celebration. I was like ‘alright, I’m going to do what other n***as ain’t do for me. I found Rick Ross immediately, cause he was at the award show. I was like ‘yo, I squashed the beef with 50 Cent, you know, he squashed it with me.’ He was like ‘I’ma move how you move.’ So I’m thinking, I’m about to squash the Rick Ross/50 Cent beef! I was there! I had him!”

Finally, the best-laid plans. “So I get to the back and [G-Unit] fighting Gunplay,” continues Fat Joe, shaking his head. “I was like ‘this is not going to happen. This is not very very good. I cannot squash this beef ever again! I thought that was going to be the U.N. Summit.” Sadly, Joey’s dreams of becoming a peace-maker died in their infancy, but is it not the thought that counts? Make sure you stream that Family Ties album and support a living legend.