Max B was big on legacy. One of my all-time favorite Biggaveli quotes is from this clip when he spoke about how important it was to leave one.
“It don’t matter who’s here at the end, nigga. It’s who leaves the legacy. We all gonna die. We all gonna die. But who’s gonna leave the legacy. Who gonna be remembered the biggest? Who gonna be talked about the most, 50 years from now, nigga? We all dying. So, that makes us all equal because everybody’s leaving whether ya like it or not. But who’s gonna leave the biggest legacy? Who gonna leave the energy out here?”
The events that transpired last night when Kanye West decided to change the title to his forthcoming album from "SWISH" to "WAVES" proved Max’s point. Wiz Khalifa stirred the pot by taking umbrage to Ye’s use of the word “waves” which in turn brought an outpouring of support for Max B’s legacy. Wiz may have had an ulterior motive given his and Ye’s shared romantic history, but it’s not like he was the only one to take issue. New Orleans rapper Chase N Cashe felt some type of way as well, starting his Max B rant off with the tweet below:
Immediately after Wiz and Chase kicked the Max B hive, Boss Don links, GIFS, and memes flooded Twitter making the controversial NYC rapper a trending topic. People debated whether or not Max owned the word “wave” and fanhoods were put into question. Some had no idea people had this much love for Tsunami Tommy, blaming the excessive fandom on Internet kids, when in actuality, his most adamant supporters are street kids.
In the hood, with an emphasis on the Tri-State area, Wavy Crockett is an unequivocal legend. I can mention Max B on a random North Jersey or Harlem block and strike up an hour-long conversation about his contribution to today’s rap scene. As we mentioned in our 20 Rappers Who Are Influencing Rap Right Now list from September of last year, artists like Future, Young Thug, and Drake are all riding the Silver Surfer’s melodic wave.
Thug and Future have acknowledged his influence in the past with tweets and IG posts:
Max made it acceptable for a street MC to mix singing and rapping. When he was at his height during the mid ‘00s, he had career criminals and block bullies singing at the top of their lungs as they shot dice on the block. His musical prowess sometimes takes a backseat when his stans mention him, though.
Max was a living, breathing cartoon character. His humor was second to none, his quotes are endless, and he has one of the most recognizable laughs of any rapper. You can scour YouTube and Worldstar for old Cocaine City clips and interviews. His beef with Jim Jones is one of the most memorable in history, and it wasn’t for the diss records that came out of it.
Three clips that always come to mind when that beef is mentioned are the time he and French stalked Jones in midtown Manhattan, the time they clowned Hell Rell for getting shot in the ass, and the Fader interview where he spoke on Jesus of Nazareth coming back and having to pay homage to the wave.
You gotta laugh to keep from crying when living in America's ghettos, and Max provided much needed comic relief for hard rocks. He's been popping since before social media
Now to the word Max is most known for. Who knew a word or phrase could be so polarizing? To my knowledge, the word wave and wavy weren't used to describe anything other than hair before Max B came along. He referred to himself as the Silver Surfer and called his movement "the wave." In Max B speak, "wave" and "wavy" mean "cool" and "influential." He often posed the question, "Who's the waviest?," on his tapes and in his on-camera appearances. Whether he started saying the word is irrelevant because he clearly took ownership of it and inspired its use within the hip-hop community.
Max B's popularity on the Internet could be attributed to A$AP Yams and the Mob. Yams interned for Dipset before the Mob got hot and one of his tasks was to pack Max B's mixtapes when the rapper was a member of the Byrd Gang.
And check Yams out in the background of the clip below:
Which brings me to a couple Yams quotes. The first is his rant on Joey Fatts' "Wave Matthews Band" where he said, "In this life you got two kinds of people: those who ride the wave and those that provide the wave." Kanye West has done both throughout his career. The second is the tweet below from February of 2013 where Yams spoke on the use of the term:
With the help of Yams screaming Max's name from the digital mountaintops, a new generation of fans got put onto the wave. One thing is certain, though, Max's legacy was solidified before last night. There are music fans under 25 that are able to vibe out to the Beatles. Should they not be allowed to do so? When David Bowie passed his album streams jumped 2,700 percent the next day.
Once Charly Wingate got himself incarcerated for 75 years, his fans spoke his name and in turn shared his wave with the ignorant. And once those unfamiliar with the Wavy One heard his words, they became enlightened by his contribution to the rap game. Art is appreciated more when the artist is no longer able to produce it; this has been going on since the beginning of time. Thanks to the Internet the wave he provided will live on.
If you didn't know Max had a strong following, now you know. All we ask is for you to acknowledge the wave when it's brought up because it literally costs nothing to pay homage.