Category Archives: I like the rap music

You will get a sentimental feeling when you hear…“No Diggity” into “Flava In Ya Ear”

  Last Christmas, I gave you my heart/But the very next day you gave it away, you JERK! This year, I’m giving you some peach Optimos and a picture of me in my new MG’s McLemore Avenue shirt. Don’t fuck up again, please.

Future husband, please understand that the small of my back is a playground of good feelings for me. (There must be a billion nerve endings there, and I love them all.) I’d like you to be pro-choice, pro-union, and pro-Pro Tools and pro-Pro Keds. I’m surprisingly forgiving when it comes to the contents of other people’s record collections, but yours is no doubt fresh anyway, so the matter doesn’t need to be addressed further. I’d like you to be able to correctly use “screamo” and “sissy bounce” in a sentence, future husband, and I’d like you to understand that 72% of our time spent together will consist of riding in the car, listening to music (we live in LA), and responding with our hands and mouths to all bangers as we hear them. (Hands up high in ecstasy; our mouths singing along, and making out). Please kiss me and tell me It’ll be OK when I talk about how I was born in the wrong era and should’ve been a teenage girl when David Ruffin was seducing teenage girls on the radio in 1966. Although I love my iPod, future husband, I’m in love with the radio–Power 106, where hiphop lives, and Hot 92.3, old school and today’s R&B, 93.5 KDAY, back in the day, of course the Whole Foods liberals on KCRW, and the nonstop oldies of K-EARTH 101, where you can often hear an old Wilson Pickett song called “Mustang Sally,” which, like 30% of Fabolous’ songs, is about a lowdown, unappreciative woman who drives all over town in a pretty car that her man bought for her. Its lesser-known remix is a song called “Prius Logan,” about a music dork with hips and skinny legs who drives all over town, singing along with her car radio.

And now, in no particular order, The Best Songs I Heard on the Radio During My Drive Back to LA from Mom’s House After Christmas.

1. “Two of Us,” The Beatles. 

Because: 1) Spector produced it.
Industry rule # 4,000-somethingorother is that the men with the most unfortunate combination of brain chemicals are always the ones who make the sweetest melodies. Hearing this one also satisfied my Spector hunger in the absence of Darlene Love’s “Christmas (Baby Please Come Home).” Fuck off, radio gods, for not playing Darlene Love. 

2) It’s the perfect BPM, the speed of a horse galloping. It’s the musical approximation of riding next to your best friend of a hundred years with whom you are fighting. You’re both sad and bitter, but the tightness in your chest says that the relationship is worth saving. You shared a good chunk of each other’s lives and you know you should talk about where things went wrong but what’s the point, and dammit, there it is, you just forgave all her trespasses in the span of about 3½ minutes thanks to Spector and his 4 little elves playing instruments.

3) “You and me chasing paper, getting nowhere” sounds like a sweet line from a capable MC who is part of a duo, referencing the early days before they made any money from rapping. Maybe Bun & Pimp C? More likely: Mos & Talib since they seem more willing than UGK are to acknowledge there was actually a time that they weren’t rich.

4) the moments from 03:00 – 03:08. The bass outro, too. Paul is really just the worst with his schmaltzy lyrics and big stupid ego, but he’s forgiven here. It turns out a Beatles block was happening on the station when this song ended, and the INSUFFERABLE “Long and Winding Road” came on instead of “Across the Universe,” like baby Jesus, the birthday boy, would have wanted. I glared at my car radio like it had eyes and/or a human brain capable of detecting hatred, then turned it to KCRW, where THIS pleased me because sometimes the radio gods aren’t so bad after all:

2. “Christmas Day,” Desmond Dekker & the Aces. 

Oh goodness, these Jamaican singers and their voices filled with sweetness and light, yet punch-you-in-the-mouth masculinity at the same time (Barrington, Tenor Saw, Lord Creator)! My feelings about the island are always in conflict, as it is a land teeming with anti-gay sentiment and deeply-entrenched misogyny. Rastas also have that whole anti-oral sex thing, which makes them a people that cannot be liked or trusted. All this goes out the window for the moments that Desmond’s voice is filling my car, though. It’s Christmas! And he’s got his barrow in the marketplace! God bless us, every one!

3. “The Third Eye,” Roy Ayers.

Secrets of numbers, secrets of sound/Secrets of numbers, secrets of sound/Secrets of wisdom will be found/Baby, baby, baby, look to the sky/Seeking to find The Third Eye. Don’t tell Roy, but I’m pretty sure Del found the Third Eye sometime in the late ’80s. He turned it into one of the freshest icons in music and never looked back. Ah well. Like Del, Roy’s yet another space cadet dreamboat who lives in the warm depths of my heart. And like Mos Def, Roy enjoys writing songs about the sky and about Brooklyn (“Mylifemylifemylifemylife in the sun-shiiiiine”; “We live in Brooklyn, baby” – Roy; “Brooklyn BK BK blunts, stars nighttime, beautiful lady, champion lover not ease up, ism/schism, NASDAQ, skyline, stars, stars” – Mos). A man named Doug Rhodes plays drums on the album from whence this song comes, which is an adorable musical joke made just for me by the universe – like someone named Bob Zildjian playing keys! I’d also like to point out that Roy’s from LA just like J-Swift, and I bet you only 2 or 3 degrees separate us, friends-wise, just like me and J-Swift. I’d like to meet J-Swift. I really would. Before a bad fate befell him (chemicals), he produced this group the Pharcyde, an excitable bunch of rapping goofballs – including their song “Passin’ Me By,” which samples Roy Ayers’ “The Third Eye.” It’s true. (I read it on a blog.)



4. “Dream On, Dream On,” Ice Water Slim.

When I made it safely back to apt. 680 I could only find the version linked above, which, even while coursing into my ear canal through my precious, finely-crafted Sennheisers, sounds like it’s playing on an AM radio a hundred yards away while I’m standing in a UPS warehouse. Yet the entire MMG squad makes their lousy material on million-dollar equipment – this is the universe’s solemn reminder that sound quality will always trump sound quality.

A 1971 b-side produced by Johnny Otis, who was bosslike and from Vallejo just like E-40, this ain’t nothin more than a melodic wail by a dude who dreams about a pretty lady. But it is a fact that, currently in the United States, the #1 R&B song is “Lotus Flower Bomb,” about grenade-shaped perfume bottles and lady-areas being like flowers. This fact offends me not only as a person who buys perfume, but as a human female and a resident of planet Earth. Ladies should not smell like explosions or wartime, and we have enough to worry about without Wale laying out rules about our nails and handbags and how tight our, um, flowers should be. I wanna be reminded of tightness, I’ll watch Parliament live in ’76 like I did on Christmas Day with my family all on the couch, marveling at the interplay of brass and woodwind and cocaine. 


5. “You And I,” Lady Gaga. 

We gotta a whole lotta money, but we still pay rent/’Cause you can’t buy a house in heaven. The single greatest country banger that Prince Rogers Nelson never wrote (his version would be called “U & I,” of course), hearing this one satisfied my hunger for a Prince banger in the absence of “Another Lonely Christmas” (Of all the ones I dream about/U are the one that makes my love shout, see/U are the only one I care for). Because the Internet is for sharing embarrassing moments: I actually teared up in H&M last week when this came on. I was tired and overstimulated from all the other humans in the store breathing up my air, but also because of this song’s Prince-ian chords and overall lyrical content. It’s been two years since I let you go/I couldn’t listen to a joke or rock ‘n’ roll/Muscle cars drove a truck right through my heart/On my birthday you sang me “Heart of Gold”/With a guitar hummin’ and no clothes/This time I’m not leaving without you. (PRINCE. It’s so very, wonderfully Prince. I see you, Gaga. Also I’d like Prince to do a cover of “Heart of Gold,” turning a bittersweet song about the passage of time into a 16-minute-long burning plea by his guitar to get the ladies in the house to cry and take their dresses off). Master manipulator Gaga plays my girly emotional insides like a piano, and Queen was a really fucking great band, plus I got a really cute bikini at H&M. So shoutout to the combined efforts of producer Mutt Lange, the H&M speaker system engineers, and the people hired by the H&M corporate office to select the songs for the playlists. Non-shoutout to me, however, for a pop song making me get weepy, rather than the fact that I was buying from a company that sells cheap cotton items made by underpaid workers in Bangladesh (not the producer Bangladesh, which would be so dope). Tangential shoutout to Elliot Mazer, who produced both Harvest and Give Me Convenience or Give Me Death, displaying some real Rick-Rubin-esque range.

Gaga was on American Idol once and coached one of the kids to keep his mouth on the mic. “It’s your girlfriend,” she told him, adding that it’s also his money and telling him to “Make love to it,” which is the most sex-infused piece of technical advice I’ve ever heard. I love it. I love her. I am human and I have ears so of course I love this song. Gaga is a controversial choice, I get it, but there’s no arguing with me on this. It’s just like with Cameron Giles, Duke basketball, and Miracle Whip: you can’t change my opinion about any of those things, either (I hate them). Therefore, I say we stick to less controversial topics, like the artistic merits of Lana Del Rey and the best way to restructure the BCS.

6. “Change the Game,” Jay-Z/Bleek/Beans, into “Mass Appeal,” Gangstarr. 

Yeah yeah, Jay. You. Will. Not. Lose. We hear you, Jay. Easy, tiger. Now please repeat after me – there’s only one rule: RICK ROCK 4 EVS, 4 EVER & EVER. “Change” is one of the few Rick Rock productions with which I am not fully in love. Like “Can I Get A,” it is the very sound of Clinton Administration pop radio, shiny and hand-clap-py, so it’s just dated and that’s not the song’s fault, but it NEEDS MORE SNARE AND/OR BASS, says my soul, which does not understand the limits of space and time and the notion of something being “dated.” My soul does not care. More bass, please. It’s impossible to separate the song from its horrendous video, which features rappers not named DMX trying to convince me they ride motorbikes all around the city for fun (“NOPE” – my eyes, in response, just like back in September). But this one’ll always warm my heart. The boys all look happy and not beaten down by the industry, and Sigel Sigel in the house is fun and sing-song-y. It’s sweet that those 3 dudes could all be in the same room together at one point in history, which is really all a lady can ask for given the amount of crybaby-ness among rap professionals. I also like that it gives me an excuse to post the video of that time Robert Goulet spent the afternoon with Shawn and his coterie of ne’er-do-wells. The mix into “Mass Appeal” was nice, too, for this lady in 2011 driving her vehicle to her apartment in Los Angeles, years after these songs were made by dudes from New York and Massachusetts. “This ain’t just a car,” K.R.I.T. says, “This my time machine.”

7. “Run Rudolph Run,” Chuck Berry. 

“It’s dangerous, because it’s slick and catchy” – US counterterrorism officials, regarding a popular song on YouTube (2011).

“It’s dangerous, because it’s slick and catchy and done by black men and it might make our daughters want to have sex” – white US grown-ups, mostly regarding rock & roll music, but really, all forms of good music (1954-present, & forever & ever).

Promo is promo, meaning promotion, people talking, records sold, i.e., MONEY, and even in the ‘50s labels knew what they were doing when it came to making their stars sound badder than they actually were. Teenagers and their allowance money were a powerful bloc. They were also sullen and disrespectful, and thought they were real badass, and therefore bought the 45s of men whom they believed to be tough. This was mostly because they fell for promo tactics. But Chuck Berry! I’m pretty sure Chuck was/is a truly depraved gentleman, a genuine dirty bird, the real deal, who served actual jail time due to his taste for sweet young things and, years later, with the barometer for what he found stimulating raised higher throughout his life, his taste for odd and really unsexy things. It might’ve been promo, but that’s a hell of a commitment to promo, right? Even though I strongly want “Run Rudolph Run” to be a critique of what were socially acceptable gifts for American children in the late ’50s (the boy wants a guitar; the girl wants a doll), I am able to suspend this desire if I so choose. Just let it ride, Logan. This one’s just happy and Christmassy, it’ll make you stop wondering What in the hell must’ve happened to Chuck when he was a kid to make him so fetish-y? and instead it’ll make you think the much more pleasant How fucking hyped are you if you’re Chuck Berry and Mos Def does his hair like that and plays you in a movie!* Plus you got the essential Marty McFly element, and all those reindeer names sound like they could be A$AP crew members – A$AP Comet, A$AP Donner, and most especially, A$AP Blitzen.

*Not quite as hyped as David Ruffin would be if he knew beautiful human specimen Leon played him in a movie, but still. Pretty hyped.

8. The Outfield, “Your Love.”  

OHHOLYFUCK, screamed my whole body when this came on, my inner Drunk White Girl showing all of a sudden. My hand could not physically move fast enough to the volume knob, and even though I didn’t get to proclaim Josie’s on a vacation far away (I caught the song halfway through the first verse), I still got to participate in some great sing-along parts (Stay the night but keep it un-der-cover) and savored the delicious wrongness of a song about a dude wanting to sleep with, and then sleeping with, someone other than his live-in lady. I have a fair amount of self-respect but even I would probably fall for I ain’t got many friends left to talk to; may I please cry upon your shoulder? (aww!). The proper feminine response to this is a wide-eyed Would it help if I took my dress off?, which I have ON LOCK because I’m softhearted and have a compulsive need to soothe others. In closing: sorry if you were in the lane next to me on the freeway last night and I almost killed you with my swerving 4-wheeled piece of Japanese machinery.

The Internet and my brother tell me that the best outfielder was probably Rickey Henderson, whom I’ve heard of despite my lack of interest in the stupid sport of baseball, because my dad always liked the A’s and because I always liked dudes who can self-promote in a verbally stylish fashion instead of a Kanyesian (“I’m 34 but inside I’m still a 13-year-old boy who is sad and mad that none of the pretty girls in class are looking at me”) fashion.

9. “No Diggity,” Blackstreet (I refuse to type BLACKstreet, because I am a grown-up), into “Flava In Ya Ear (remix),” Biggie Smalls & a bunch of people not named Biggie Smalls.

Perfect mix, whatsyourname who matched these two up on KDAY. They basically have the same BPM and I guess I never noticed it before. Hearing Craig Mack reminded me that I only drink the finest breast milks, and hearing Teddy Riley inspired me to proclaim “Finna bring back no diggity in twenty-twelve, along with vainglorious and honey dip” out loud to myself in my car. Let’s just skip over that unfortunate video with the puppets & Dre in a fucking Emmitt Smith jersey, and ignore Teddy’s sad attempt at hitting that note in “by no means avvv-raaaaage,” sounding so wobbly, like he’s crossing a stream and stepped on a rock that looked secure but, oh no, oopsie!, it’s loose! He might fall down! Shaky-voice! Let’s just focus on the greatness of this song, the story of a honey dip who drives a nice car and has dudes open all over town, probably because she is witty and knows a lot of musical trivia and has a blog in which she writes about Blackstreet and Bill Withers in equal measure. Let’s also focus on finding out why exactly Teddy moved his studio to Virginia in the early ‘90s. There must be a story there, right? TEDDY, WHAT HAPPENED? And did you know this hideous Clams beat completely boosts your ’87 sound? And where is Timbaland? Just heard “Are You That Somebody” and it holds up so well.

Like me, the young lady in the song has all kinds of hustles and isn’t satisfied with a man unless he makes tons of money. So if you are poor, you and I will never have sex or even go on a date. However, because I’m nice, I’m providing you with the criteria for getting hired by UPS. (Don’t be mad!) Like being my lover, a job at UPS is no walk in the park (except, of course, when you and I go for actual walks in the actual park). “It may be fun and exciting, UPS warns, “but it’s also physical and fast-paced” (just like being my lover!). “Package Delivery Drivers must have excellent customer contact and driving skills, including the ability to operate a vehicle equipped with a manual transmission. Qualified applicants must have a valid driver’s license issued in the state that they live. This is a position that involves continual lifting, lowering, and maneuvering of large items,”  HEY-O, that sounds familiar, doesn’t it? No? Last night, in the bedroom? Remember? PS, a physical exam is also required (for both jobs).





10. “Rhythm Changes,” The Counts. 

Unpleasant facts of life with which I must make peace include:

that there are actual human females who brag about giving their precious inner-thigh parts to charisma-free yet famous human males Fabolous and Juelz;

that Wiz Khalifa makes his living as a professional musician (side note: EAT A CHEESEBURGER, CAMERON);

that “Maneater” preceded “Part Time Lover” by 3 years, so it would appear Stevie boosted the bassline from Hall & Oates, not the other way around, WTF;

and finally: I have big fat trouble coming to terms with the fact that I live in the entertainment capital of the world, yet “Rhythm Changes” is not on a constant loop on at least 2 of the 4 R&B stations in this city. I only heard it on Christmas night because programmers were given a little more leeway than usual. I believe it was Minaj who said something like, “This song just remind me of/Everything radio deprive me of.”

11. Emilio Santiago, “Bananeira.”

Bananeira não sei/Bananeira será/Bananeira sei não/Isso é lá com você/Será no fundo do quintal/Quintal do seu olhar/Olhar do coração (“Banana tree, I don’t know/Banana tree, maybe/Banana tree, I don’t know/That’s up to you/Maybe deep in the backyard/Backyard of your stare/The stare from the heart”). I mean, right? Exactly, Emilio! You nailed it!

Hypnotic and hip-friendly and more about the backing track than the lyrics, just like everything Jay Elect releases into the world, this is probably the best song about bananas since Dwayne Carter rapped over that one about being the best and fucking the world. This one also makes me forget about the banana trade in Brazil, an industry that’s a symbol of the income disparity that’s existed for hundreds of years. Bananas go bad really quickly, they can be racist, and their namesake spiders will kill you if you’re not careful. But at least Afro-Brazilian men can sing silly songs about bananas while still retaining their masculinity (it helps if you, like Emilio Santiago, have a deep, Scott-Heron-esque tone to your voice). Huddled with my family on the couch on Christmas Eve, “Cosmic Slop” on the TV, I was reminded of the sad reality of Black American manhood needing to disguise itself in fluffy hats and diapers in order to be less threatening. Um…merry Christmas?

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Voracious Los Angeles Woman Demands More Good Rap Music (episode 8,012): David Banner,“Swag.”

“Let a white cop shoot a black kid/You’ll see a few tweets, that’s it.” Cranky Dave’s got a point here but he’s also perhaps missing the point that all of Lil B’s songs are from the future, when words don’t mean what we think they mean only we haven’t caught up yet so we don’t realize it. And can’t I be complex enough to have a master’s degree and still have a folder on my laptop dedicated to snappin & trappin songs? Can’t I? Or am I deluding myself? The intensity of this debate makes me feel like I should stop blogging and working for the government and just go back to stripping.

Still, that V-Nasty reference made me scream out YESSS, THANK YOU in apt. 680 when I heard it last night. And Cranky Dave is better than no Dave at all, because even when he’s cranky and message-shouting he still makes it fun and King of Diamonds-ish. GET EM.

“Get Like Me.” YES I’ve fucking seen a Chevy with butterfly doors. Stop asking, about 87 songs since this song came out. I only want David to ask me.

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WTT: the The Car Test

Ha. This jerk.

I like to think I’m made of fairy dust, hips, pure love and 808, but in fact I am human. I’m only human. The jerk above and his friend made a record, and on it they flash and stunt, and cry a little, and overall they try to grip hard to that thing they’re losing, that Scorsesian ability to make jerks seem appealing. Watch the Throne is a ghost that has nothing to do with my life, like those awful Transformers movies – no real storyline, just a bunch of explosions and cars and slow, panning shots of ladies’ asses. But I’m only human. So I had to give this thing a listen. Here, then, is a song-by-song breakdown of exactly how long it’ll take me to jump out of your car when you put Watch the Throne on the Kenwood with me in the passenger seat:


1. “No Church in the Wild”63 seconds; I wanna hear an internal-struggle song about being torn between hedonism and a more meaningful life, I’ll listen to “Cadillac on 22s,” thankyouuuuu.

“You’re gonna put Frank Ocean on a song, and you waste that voice of his on this drivel?” I say out loud to you in my naggy voice (you’re a stand-in for the true object of my frustration, 88-Keys, who is no doubt the man behind the boards here. 2011 Kanye lacks the restraint required to make such an understated piece of music – 2003 Kanye had that restraint, but wishing for his return is not going to make it so.)

“What’s a mob to a king?,” Frank sings, “What’s a king to a God? What’s a God to a non-believer who don’t believe in anything?” Knock it off, Frank. Nobody cares. More importantly, I ask you, what’s a goon to a goblin??  I can only tolerate about 1 full minute of this, but still, it’s got some pluses: a) the presence of Frank’s voice, underused as it is, and b) an interesting beat. I can’t tell if I like it or not but goddammit I keep listening to it and that’s gotta mean something, right? Ooh and pitch it up and that BPM would make “That’s All” the perfect song to mix into it when you have your next BBQ. 

2. “Lift Off”22 seconds.

Oh hi Beyonce, glad you could join us. You’re beautiful but boring, a spinning, perfect ballerina inside a jewelry box. And oh my, what’s this? Looks like you brought some ascending, triumphant synth stabs with you! Nice. J and K are trying to appeal to the “persons with breasts” demographic with this one, I see. Except that J and K should stop insulting my intelligence and just call the song “Pandering to the Ladies (The Lady Song).” I mean, really; let’s just lay it all out on the table, gentlemen. I can hear this thing playing at Forever 21 already. (Rap they don’t play at Forever 21: Curren$y, Wacko n’ Skip, Keith Thornton, Terrence Thornton. Just like God intended.)

3. “N—s in Paris”42 seconds.

Margiela, hot bitches, Derrick Rose’s crotch getting some love (verbally – not in any other way. Goodness gracious.): this song sounds like the daily goings-on in apartment 680! That’s not enough to hold me, however. Aw damn. Once I hear the full hook, which is pretty great even though it has Michael Bay explosions and I’m already tired of hearing Aziz Ansari’s future rap song based on the phrase that shit cray, I open up the door and I’m gone, gone like the wind…if the wind wore jeans that are too tight and if the wind cared wayyyyy too much about jerks who make rap music.

4. “Otis”half a second. (no link; IT DOESN’T DESERVE A GODDAMN LINK)

“HOW BOUT WE JUST LISTEN TO THE ACTUAL ‘TRY A LITTLE TENDERNESS,’” I yell when I hear the opening strains of track 4. You had to know this was coming; I’ve been bitching about this song for a week now! And since I don’t know when to quit, I just keep going. HERE’S TODAY’S NEWSPAPER HEADLINE FOR THAT ASS: LOS ANGELES WOMAN GETS MIGRAINE UPON LEARNING OF CHICAGO MAN TAKING CREDIT FOR PRODUCING A SONG WHEN REALLY HE JUST ADDED FUZZINESS AND A DRUM TRACK OVER A CLASSIC. Then I feel bad; you kind of like this song – it is chopped-up very nicely, I’ll give you that – and I just yelled at you about it. I put my face in my hands. Yelling’s not normally my thing; I don’t know what came over me. I am truly sorry. You’re still reeling, though, so then I try to sing a funny little song or tell a joke to lighten the mood. If you’re still annoyed, which you probably won’t be because I’m adorable, and have you seen my hips?, I’ll put my hand on your hand – trying a little tenderness, if you will – as a sign of apology. The actual “Try a Little Tenderness” is playing at this point, since I always get what I want. Then we make out, and things get especially hot during the drums at 2:34! Yay.

5. “Gotta Have It” – initially, 12 seconds. Then I let it warm up, and boy am I glad, because if I had gone with my first instinct I would’ve missed the very, verrrrry Pharrellian spare-change-jingling-in-your-pocket breakdown just before the 2-minute mark.

The Whatchu need, WhatWhatchu need draws me in, and the Takeumonhome about halfway through convinces me to ride this thing out (thank you for keeping the James Brown fires burning, Mr. Williams!) Unfortunately, I’ll probably still pout all the way through because when you said you were putting on a song about needing to have it, I thought I was going to hear THISSSSS:

Even more unfortunately, once the thing comes to an end I return to my senses and remember that if I wanna hear some JB all chopped up, goddammit it’s gonna be one J.  Yancey who gives it to me.

6. “New Day”4:39. That’s the whole thing! (I like it; I want it to go on and on).

Nina Simone saying Breeze driftin on by, echoed coos, plus Robert Diggs, plus a narrative theme that cleanses me, kind of un-does all that gross consumerism I feel since I acted on impulse and bought that Alexander Wang bag. This song is wonderful, pretty, heavily-bottomed (ROBERT DIGGS; I just told you). “And if the day comes I only see him on the weekend,” J says about his pretend-son, “I just pray we was in love on the night that we conceived him.” Aw Shawn. It makes me get a little teary-eyed, probably because I have a mean case of melody-specific autism and because of my still-vulnerable emotional state after catching some very intense feelings over Mike Mills’ Beginners when I saw it Sunday.





7. “That’s My Bitch”3:22 [just because I’m curious to see if what every ex-boyfriend says about me is true (that I really do like every song with the word bitch in the title)].

Q-Tip’s drums doing an impression of Pharrell n’ Chad’s drums in ’01 sounds nice, and then the drums from “Apache” come in and they always sound nice. But even though the best advice I can always give myself about anything in any situation at any time is DON’T OVER-THINK IT, LOGAN, I always fail in doing so. Track 7 is no exception to this. J on non-white feminine beauty: “Picasso was alive he woulda made her/That’s right….Mona Lisa can’t fade her/I mean Marilyn Monroe, she’s quite nice/But why all the pretty icons always all white?” Oh J, I’m so glad you asked – it’s probably because of Madison Avenue, our special American kind of racism that has a mutually beneficial relationship with our special way of  commodifying women’s bodies within a free-market culture that convinces us to buy things we don’t need, and because your friend K raps constantly about pretty white icons as if they are the standard of beauty. (Beautiful ladies of color name-checked by Kanye in “Christian Dior Denim Flow”: 8. Beautiful ladies with my skin tone: 12. The defense rests, your honor.)

8. “Welcome to the Jungle”A solid 2 and a half minutes. Get ’em, Swizz!

That GODDAMMIT right after J’s verse will stay in my head for the foreseeable future. I like that. Your shoes are still are ugly, though.

9. “Who Gon Stop Me”4 minutes; almost the whole thing, because it’s produced by the “Man Down” guy and because the rhyme patterns keep changing and I want to hear what comes next.

Alas, it’s too slow and it’s got tense buildups and shuddery breakdowns for no reason, rhyme patterns that change for no reason, and that thing J does where he just makes labored breathing sounds into the microphone every third line is really on display here and I hate it. UH-HUH. UHH. AH. The one thing I’ll probably always remember about these 4 minutes in your car, though?  “Heard Yeezy was racist, well, I guess that’s on one basis: I only like green faces.” Cute.



10. “Murder to Excellence” – 2 minutes, 4 seconds. Too preachy, but people like it when kids sing on hooks, including me, so I let it play and play. And at 01:48 it sounds like the  “Make Me Wanna Holler” intro, so that’s nice.

11. “Made in America”17 seconds. Just enough time for me to realize the drums are never coming in, not ever. (I get hyped when I hear a drum roll. And I get un-hyped when I hear yet another song in 2011 that sounds like a video game.)

I’m reading a Spector bio and I’m pissed at this song as if it were an actual person. “Nailing the whole edifice to the ground like metal tent spikes in a storm were the drums,” says page 113, “A clean, hard backbeat was the cement in the Wall of Sound.” Riding in your car, I hear this drum-less demonstration in lameness that Kanye made on his SK-1 during the commercial break on a rerun of The Office last Thursday night, and I can’t stomach any conversation about the weather, the movies, the NBA lockout. I am that disheartened. I wanna hear some tinny melodic prettiness, I’ll put on something “Sleng Teng”-related. I wanna hear some drums that’ll give me a brain aneurysm, I’ll bypass J n’ K and go straight to Vietnam Sadler. (This one also includes Frank crooning “Sweet Father Joseph, Sweet Jesus/We made it in America/Sweet Baby Jesus, oh sweet baby Jesus.” I swear to Christ, and sweet baby Jesus, even, that I will never forgive Frank for this. Sold your soul for a paycheck, buddy.)



12. “Why I Love You” – UGH. A third of a second? A half-second? And can someone please tell me if it’s humanly possible to un-hear a song?

Brought to you by the good people at Red Bull and Edge Shaving Gel, when I hear this I feel like leaping off a mountaintop on my snowboard while Sal Masakela provides commentary over the slow-mo footage. When I hear this I do not, however, want to walk down the street, dance next to a parked car while someone films the whole thing, ride in a car at 12 MPH, take my dress off to lounge on the couch, take my dress off to make a baby, vote, punch someone in the face, sob, fly a kite, hug my mom, gun down Radames, take the stage at Magic City, or write a paper about Chomsky (things all good rap songs songs should make me want to do).

13. “ Boringest Illest MF Alive”zzzzzZZZZZZZ. Oh I’m sorry; I didn’t realize there was music coming from your speakers. Dullsville.

Obviously I love K’s “You in line behind Curren$y/Yeah you after money,” FUCK YES A CURREN$Y REFERENCE, but in the end, it’s not enough to save me from naptime when you put this song on. Anyway, if I wanna hear some female vocal operatical theatricals, I’ll listen to Xzibit’s “Paparazzi” (which, I must acknowledge, I first heard on an old 411 video shown to me by Jackson; thank you, little brother!). Cut it off; put on Jet Files or Jackie Moore or let’s see if Art Laboe is on. I’m feeling lucky, like maybe he’ll play some Flamingos.

14. “H.A.M.” skipped. In apt. 680 it’s called “J.K.W.C. (Japanese Kids Watching Cartoons)” because this stuttery thing gives me a seizure. On the other hand, it makes me feel like I just jumped into Tron and that’s pretty fresh.

15. “Primetime”exactly 2 minutes; no longer.

I don’t care what none of yall say; I still love em (“em” = Kanye’s HAHs). And out of respect for No ID, who produced it, I had to give it at least 2 minutes. But just 2 minutes. This was also the rule for my 808s and Heartbreak listening session, remember?

16. “The Joy”NO. 

This is the way the album ends; not with a bang but with a whimper. At this point in the evening, I’m outside your car, walking with my heels in my hand, and you’re driving next to me at 2 MPH, asking what the fuck my problem is. I wasn’t raised to have screaming fights in public, so I keep it classy. “For my thoughts on ‘The Joy,’ please refer to my dissertation on ‘Otis,’” I snap. Then I raise my fists to the night sky and yell PETER PHILLIPS OF MOUNT VERNON, NEW YORK, you oughta be ashamed of yourself. I gave this song 7 seconds, some precious moments of my life that I’ll never get back. I should’ve spent those seconds scrolling through your iPod to find the original that was copied and pasted all sloppy-like into this piece of hot garbage.

Anyway, through it all, I laughed; I cried; I learned to experience freedom through the power of purchasing luxury goods. But other than “Gotta Have It” and “New Day,” I wish I had just stayed in and listened to the Three Tough Guys soundtrack (while wearing my TAF Jorge Ben shirt and NAF bathing suit and LUAF sandals. 

(New As Fuck; Lace-Up As Fuck)

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“Bitch I’m ten toes in it” – Gibbs, in a song about, um, my toes?
HA, j/k. It’s about Isaac (“The Coldest”).

“Hung Up on My Baby.” SO MUCH MORE than just the moment at 00:29.

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White girl side hustle opportunity I missed #6 (“industry dinner with Curren$y” edition)

I HAVE BLONDE HAIR AND OFTEN WEAR A WHITE TANK TOO, YOU KNOW, SO HOW COME I CAIN’T SIT THERE?

I would add “Whothefuck is that bitch,” à la Joi in Friday, but I don’t talk like that in real life so I don’t want Curren$y to see this post and think I’m foul-mouthed. It’s unladylike.

Aw, censorship. I had to do it, this being a sweet and innocent blog.


(you gotta buy the Blu-Ray edition if you want the director’s cut)
I know there’s more to him as a man but you can’t fault me for thinking that all Curren$y cares about is his X-box, V-12 engines, the greatest strains this season, and a whole lot of commas on his checks. He also says things like Dead stock tissue in the box, elephant print/On my Flint 13’s no retro 3M reflective, which is either about cars or shoes – either way, I’m fucked. Not a lot for me to work with there, conversation-wise.
But I bet you I can elicit a smile across the dinner table by engaging him in a debate about Sean Payton’s visor (stylish or no?) and which is the superior walking-in-slow-motion-out-to-your-Caprice-in-the-driveway song (“Easin’ In” or “Only One Can Win”?). Then I can just babble on, ask him what he thinks about the pumpkin-colored 328 on that Frank O cover, and try to repeat some of my favorite lyrics of his – Something you n—as ain’t never been: boss/Can’t find your mom and your dad/In the grocery store, panicking: lost – til the champagne hits me and I lose my focus. I start to get all critical like I’m composing a blog post (“I didn’t much care for your lyrical content being so firearm-heavy a few years ago, you sounded silly”; “How come I was not notified of the audition for the ‘White Girl Jumping into Pool’ character in the ‘Address’ video?”). It turns into a huge foot-in-mouth extravaganza. So I just resort to giggling, playing with my hair, saying “I FEEL THE JETNESS, LALALAAA” and just when I’m about to ask him to start reading the phone book to me, the DJ plays my funtimes girly song that I have no choice but to love due to the estrogen flowing through me, or maybe it’s that funtimes girly song, so I scream THISMYSONNNG, then excuse myself from the table to go work it out on the floor. It’s a good plan, yes? I’m ready. I am. I’ve lotioned myself up, I got my white tank on and I’m ready for my meal at the table, the human obstruction known as “Dame Dash” be damned. I want to be that lady at that table. Time to get it crackin like lobsters.
“Run Dat Shit.” The part about having advance access to fashion designers’ sketch pads for next season is lame; it could be straight from Rawss’ playbook and that’s the most devastating criticism I can give a lyric. But the description of him on the red carpet in shorts makes up for it. (He was just at the premier ’cause his homeboy was in the movie!). Also: My style straight like 9:15 and Marlo on the screen, yeah bitch we on The Wire/You talking too much, bitch – go sit up there with the driver. (things I like)

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Things from that Pusha T & Tyler song that can be worked into conversations for fun.

4th of July backyard wrasslin went a little too far.

Terrence n’ Ty’s “Trouble On My Mind” is this year’s “Lo Sweatas” – songs whose hooks you could hear even before you heard them the first time, because they both have titles consisting of classic rap lines.

Ohh! Lo sweaters!, I said a couple years ago when I got a link to that Project Mayhem song but hadn’t yet seen the video (then, when I saw it, what I said was: chandeliers on the Eldorado, oh my god how beautiful!). Ohhh, the big booming voice of Chuck! is immediately what I knew I’d be faced with when I heard the title of the Pusha/Tyler song. Welcome to the Terrordome, Chuck said in that voice many years ago, and he was not fucking around. Rap is NFL Films and he’s John Facenda. Pusha and Tyler’s rap voices aren’t quite as big and booming, but just like Chuck they are immensely quotable in song. Plus, like Chuck, they simply refuse to lose and can appreciate the wickedness of a drummer. DEAL WITH IT.

1. “Runnin’ like the Rebels, UNLV” – Pusha.

Pusha follows this up with “sport shoe on a pedal,” because he’s contractually obligated to mention his car every eighth bar, but if you’re in my tax bracket and you talk like that to me you’re going to sound like an asshole. So let’s just keep it classic and simple, please, and stick with the collegiate associations when making your point. It dresses things up. You simply cannot go wrong with a cute NCAA nickname reference! Like before sex you could make prediction about “Freakin like a demon deacon,” for example, or if someone won’t quit asking you questions you could say “We ain’t in Wisconsin so stop badgering me.”

2. “Pharrell said ‘get em,’ so I got em” – Ty.

(for when you reach the name-dropping part of the conversation, and for humbly describing a recent accomplishment)

It’s not appropriate to throw in the Pharrell part during a chat, unless of course you really know him [in which case you are my new best friend because he is painfully beautiful to look at; I’d like to meet him, if only briefly, then avert my gaze. Solar eclipses and Pharrell both have that potential to damage a girl’s retinas. (retinae?)]. Or you can replace his name with anyone famous who’s given you solid career advice. “Khalifa said get em, so goddammit I got em (made a lot of money via the combo of getting introduced to the right producer at the right time and tapping into teenage boys’ love of weed).” But I’d recommend just shortening it to Get em for potency. This one’s my favorite on the list because I swear to god I SAY THIS ALREADY, IN REAL LIFE. (ISTA/IRL!).

Mom: “Yes, I will drive to Los Angeles just to hem apt. 680’s curtains for you, adult daughter, because you make your way through the world in a state of perpetual adolescence. I will then give you $10 and insist you get some asada tacos at Tacos Arizas – at least 3 tacos, young lady, because why do you look skinnier every time I see you? (furrowed brow).” Me: “GET EMMMM, Mommm! Thanks.” Listen, it’s no secret Ty would not kick an underweight blonde-haired lady out of bed. The fact that we use the same phrases just solidifies the undisputed truth that we are destined to have a brief, doomed love affair.

3. “You coming shorter than a Bushwick Billy costume on sale during Christmas in Philly” – Ty.

(for the “heated” portion of the conversation)

I’ve stopped making the rounds in the freestyle circuit, but if I were still active I’d totally use this line in a cipher. And my hands would get higher and higher the madder I get. Ty’s not from Houston, but he raps a lot, and he’s really pretty good with the insults when he’s not working on his 13-Point Program to Destroy America. He’s not all fellatio/fuck off, Mom/paranoia raps, people. Please. And I’m happy to hear Ty’s voice hasn’t lost its calculatedly ominous restraint; even though it’s being used to talk about pills and fucking the world and costumes in this verse instead of things that bother easily-startled types, it’s still fun for me. It was entertaining to hear people get freaked out about Chuck Berry Body Count 2 Live Crew Tyler & crew, but in the end I really am enjoying them shutting up so I can think again.

The Philly reference is also useful to throw into a conversation, as it provides a nice jump-off point for a discussion of Oyola’s Epicly Laterd episode. (Rick is cranky and a good storyteller, so of course I love him. I believe commenter “dfrank” said it best: “Best recognize a real man when you see one”).

4. “The feeling is neutral, the gang is youthful/And fuckin’ tighter than Chad Hugo’s pupils” – Ty.

(for when you need to describe something really, really fresh to your friend)

Just like people wearing The Hundreds, the fact that the use of “tight” in popular speech has lasted this long totally shocks me. But then, I always get stuff like that wrong. If you had asked me in ’05, I would’ve predicted that “tight” would soon die but Swishahouse would have the industry in a sales chokehold for at least 10 years. OOPSIE. Anyway, is Tyler saying here that Chad is an intense individual? A person insanely dedicated to his craft? Or does this line mean that Chad doesn’t ingest any chemicals? If so, that’s something I just added to my musicnerdfacts cache. I also just learned that Alfonso Ribeiro’s charater in The Fresh Prince (Carlton Banks) was named in tribute to the frontman of Public Enemy (Carlton Ridenhour). IT’S TRUE; I heard it on HeightFiveSeven.

5. “This is for the critics who doubted the chemistry/Two different worlds, same symmetry – Pusha.

(To be used when the conversation needs some spice, so you just make something up and throw it in)

These critics who doubted the chemistry between Terrence and Ty; do they have names? Nope, they sure don’t, because NOBODY DOUBTED A TYLER X CLIPSE EFFORT WOULD BE ANYTHING LESS THAN TIGHT(er than Chad Hugo’s pupils). Stop being fake-hated, Mr. Thornton; everybody loves you and we all know it and we all know that you know it. Later today we can go to H&M, where you’ll tell me how cute I am and how everything looks good on me because I’m skinny. And when I emerge from the dressing room in an XS shirt, I’ll obnoxiously point to myself and say “This is for the people who said I’m too fat to fit in this! WE DID IT, BROOKLYN (or something similarly triumphant).” On the way home, we’ll meet up with my mom at Tacos Arizas; I’ll eat 3 tacos and say “Why’d you say I couldn’t eat 3 tacos?” Then I’ll stab her and Ty will write a song about it and rap it to me during coitus. Or when we’re shopping at Whole Foods.


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Listening to E-40’s “My Shit Bang” on a Sunday drive through Los Angeles, and other rap joys of the past week.

Yesterday in the paper there was a review of a new collection of essays by Edward Hoagland.

“(He) is a writer who has spent more time observing with gratitude than opining, says reviewer Susan Salter Reynolds,

‘Life is moments,’ he writes, ‘day by day, not a chronometer or a contractual commitment by God. OH SHIT, TIME TO DO AN E-40 POST was of course my response to this. Moments like the song above coming on the radio, perfectly-timed and making my car’s tinny speaker system seem like something ten times more expensive? Those kinds of moments, you mean? Basically I’d just like to take a moment say Thank you, LA Times book review, in conjunction with Power 106 programmers. It all came together perfectly. I read that Hoagland sentence, then got in the Civic and heard that E-40 and I drove off into the sunset. Which brings me to the week’s first award –

1. Best Use of Bass (week of 06/12 – 06/19): “My Shit Bang, E-40.

For achievement in convincing me that my shit bang even in a 13-year-old Honda coupe, I had to start the list with the English Professor (I attend Baller U – class of 2014, cuddie). 40’s also my Favorite Story-telling Cool Uncle and has a permanent spot on the List of Dudes Who I’d Like to Read the Phone Book to Me Out Loud.


My shit bang
My shit thrub
I’m a motherfucking beast
I’m a motherfucking hog
Pull up with the slump
Or should I say black truck soundin’
Like I got an alligator in the back

Paint wetter than melted ice
Rally and hockey stripes
burning rubber at every light
mean muggin’ like fuck your life.

Best Use of Alligator. And, without a doubt, Best Use of Thrub. I’d also like to recognize 40 as having this week’s Outstanding Non-Perfect Vocal Moment (the way he gets out of breath at 00:51, when he says hog – PERFECT; thanks for keeping it in the song, producer ToneBone from Los Angeles, CA).


2. Best Nonrap Appreciation that Translates Perfectly as a Rap Appreciation:

“The Magritte work that I always return to is The Treachery of Images, because we have it at the LA County Museum. It’s a kind of touchstone of his. He’s affirming the slipperiness, or as he calls it the treachery, of images, of language – that a word and an object have no necessary connection other than that we collectively assigned that word and that object to go together. I really appreciate his word play.

Is this me talking about 40, or Baldessari talking about Magritte in The Guardian? Aha, I have posed a difficult question, because it could be either. Except we didn’t collectively assign “gouda to mean money or “elroy for cop – 40 did, and we just followed along because he’s got that charisma. Signifiers and the signified can be a frustrating concept; it takes me back to my days as a co-ed. If my Lit 101 teacher had just used the example of an alligator to illustrate how the same thing that describes the knocking-ness of speakers can also describe a scaly thing that comes from a swamp, I would’ve had a much easier time with the whole concept of structuralism.

3. Best Hat; Most Blatant Display of Love for Eric Wright; Most Effective Pandering to Elderly Rap Fans; Best Use of Typeface; Best Use of Los Angeles Design Archetype When It Comes to Hats: Jeezy at the Hot 107.9 concert in Atlanta over the weekend. (That hat. LOOK AT THAT HAT, HOLY CHRIST). Outstanding Achievement by a Non-LA Resident in Making This Blogger Smile.

Normally I insist that a gentleman wear his hometown somewhere on his person. I do not care for fluid allegiances, dudes who forsake the home team because the division rival’s got better colors. REP YOUR SET, PLEASE. Have a little conviction. And yet I do not have a problem with a Georgian wearing the name of a city to which he does not belong. I’m complex like that, I guess. Or just in a really good mood.

Jeezy also gets Best Historical Tie-In, as this week is the 40th anniversary of upstanding moral human being Richard Nixon’s completely logical and well-planned “war on drugs. If Nixon were here today he’d argue that coke raps fund terrorism. I’m pretty sure he’d hate Palin, though, so he and I would at least have that in common.

Best Hat, Runner-Up: Casual in that J. Rawls video.


“Ha, look at that dude’s funny-lookin stoic smiley-face on his hat! I don’t know what it means but it’s cuuuuute, I said to myself, before realizing I’ve gotten slightly off-course in my mp3 habits. Been listening to too many 20-year-old MCs and worshiping at the altar of Georgia rap. I need to get back to my cranky-old-90s-reminiscing Cali roots sometimes. Plus I just love a black-on-black fitted, thank you and good day.

4. Best Use of Weezy: Jay Wayne Jenkins having Dwayne Carter come on through to the live show to perform his verse, AKA Jeezy at the Hot 107.9 concert in Atlanta over the weekend – specifically, this moment in his set, which got him so many cool points. And have I mentioned that HAT?

The best BEST part of this whole thing is the fact that there is no Wayne introduction, no stopping the music for maximum drama, even though that would certainly be warranted since Wayne is the most hugest rock star in the galaxy (Internet) right now. Wayne just starts in. Unheard of! I screamed, out loud, sitting right here as I type this, when he came out on stage – literally, this eruption of pleasure from my throat the moment I saw Weezy, even though the video is called JEEZY BRINGS OUT LIL WAYNE HOT 107.9 B-DAY BASH. Weezy and I, we have our ups and downs; he’s a man who sometimes falters (those pink shorts, working with Travis Barker, hanging out with Dirk, putting all those babies in women). But he knows how to redeem himself through sheer charisma. It translates to success and incredible likeability. That’s how when he was 16 he bought his first Mercedes-Benz, somethingsomething thousand something and their girlfriends. You gotta make the money first. Then when you get the money, you get the power. Then when you get the power, you get the women (the blogging women, to scream in response to you showing up and kicking your verse on Internet video).

I love this moment so much, it’s like I orchestrated the whole thing. I’m the puppeteer. I’m the Bill Graham of 2011 southern urban radio birthday shows. “Places, gentlemen, I said to them, “Readyyyy, annnnnnnd AMAZE THE CROWD. These radio station shows are so consistently dull, and the sound on the videos so consistently bad, that I don’t hardly ever watch them. Once every 8-10 years, though, you get some magic. Like me with this website. I don’t post nearly enough, but when I do, I pretty much come correct every time. (I’m the Terrence Malick of rap blogging.)

5. Best Set Claim: Jeezy in “I’m Ballin. (song #2 above)

Summer’s mine, winter too
I’m poppin’ bottles in the club, that’s what winners do.

40 balled outta control; Jeezy’s just ballin. Just doin a lil ballin, that’s all. You know. NBD. Gotta start small. 40’s got 10 rap years and 50 lbs on Jeezy; don’t wanna step on The Scrillfather’s toes. Plus he’d make fun of a Compton hat on someone from Atlanta.

Jeezy bypassed repping a block/neighborhood/city/state and went straight to an entire season. “Keep your Hollygrove, your Cedar Block; I’m claiming an entire 3-month section of the calendar year,” he says, “Now who’s fuckin with that.” (“PS: yeaaauuughhhh”)

Link

6. Most Amusing/Stubborn Trend: What I like to call “brain raps. But not just brain raps – braggy, one-upping brain raps. This’ll be the summer of rappers increasingly outdoing each other with descriptions of places a girl went down on them, if songs like “Racks on Racks” (YC: while talking on the phone), “Ballin (Jeezy: in the backseat of the Phantom), and “Session” (Tyler: while watching The Berrics – plus the giver is someone’s parent, for which he earns extra credit) are any indication.

7. I got that Dilla, Premo, Swizzy flow.

Most Sacrilegious and Delusional; Most Infuriating to Anyone with Taste and Good Sense:
Wale in “I’m on One.” IN FACT, HIS FLOW IS NOT WELL-SUITED TO ANY OF THOSE PRODUCERS. Well, maybe Swizz.

Most Incorrect too. Replace the “I” in that sentence with “T3,” “Guru,” or “DMX,” then come back and see me.

I find Wale to be so intensely unlikeable as a human being that it’s hard for me to admit this next thing, BUT: I do like that N—s George Foreman grillin’/Shit I spit that rope-a-dope line. Everybody wanna hear a good Ali rap now and then; Wale knows. He’s got some good sports references. I can appreciate that. He also gets points for using “geechy” in a song circa 2011. However, this does not detract from the fact that he just seems like such a rude person. He’s the dude that says “AY. (pause) AY! as a flirtation technique when you walk by and when you don’t respond he calls you stuck up or goes psssshhhhh (which means “She’s stuck up”). I’m speaking for all ladies with that one.

8. Best Closing Salutation: RZA in an interview by The Guardian.

It also gets the honor of Least Cynical Moment of the Week, and it slowed the world down for a sec and reminded me what’s really important. I have a tiny bit of a problem with the sentence that precedes his goodbye (RZA’s need to announce that he’s our collective daddy figure. It turns me off.) but I still find this quote amazingly comforting. RZA says Wu-Tang forever right before he walks away from you. What a freaking superhero. I imagine that having a conversation with him would result in me being so happy, my enthusiasm would make me lose control of my limbs and my ability to speak clearly. I’d want to go in for a hug but I’d lose my nerve. The result would be an awkward handshake/dap combo.


9. Best Use of Curren$y. Curren$y of the Week. Best Curren$y I Done Heard Since I Last Did a Curren$y Post: Curren$y, “You See It.”

Marvel at my stance at your girl
What she think, she can’t even respond

Cause her mind is now mine, fool

I ain’t lying, let’s just cross the couch

Sleeping with my shoes on just in case
I have
to wake up and be out
Once again it’s on

Mama bring my bong to the game room

With nothing but some panties on

And them Bape socks that I gave you

Never once on probation but your man’s on his papers

Spendin’ them, stackin’ them, feelin’ them

Wrappin’ em, lightin’ em, never passin’ em
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That bong/panties part! Curren$y thinks he’s bossed up, like I’m going to respond to an order to be a sex robot. STOP TELLING ME WHAT TO DO, CURREN$Y, but really I mean please continue telling me what to do please. The song as a whole is forgettable, lacking something I can really swoon over – like the fuzzy THC bass of “Montreux” and that drum pattern of “Success is My Cologne.” But this week’s Best Curren$y has that nice power dynamic in its lyrical content. Bring my bong to the game room in just your chonies. Rakim’s the soul controller; Curren$y’s the mind controller (i.e., the soft-female-body-parts controller. That’s how this soft female operates, anyway). Now if you’ll excuse me, I have to go take my boyfriend his medicine, which he will need in order to get relaxed yet focused for his upcoming billiards game. He promised he’d read me some more of the phone book tonight (he’s on “J” already!).

10. Best Use of Horns Since Trick Daddy’s “Shut Up”: Big Sean & Kanye, “Marvin Gaye and Chardonnay.”

Kanye’s not a Dude Who I’d Like to Read Me the Phone Book Out Loud (he’d go to the “Dick” section for last names and try to be funny, true to his 11-year-old boy tendencies). This week he has the honor of earning Best Impression of Waka by an 11-Year-Old Trapped in a Prissy Adult Male Chicagoan’s Body. I should say Best Impression of Drumma Boy too, since that beat is so severely jacked I worry that Kanye has trouble sleeping at night. His conscience just terrorizes him. Anyway, the song is lazy and cliche-ridden, Kanye West is the least sexy person in music, and why the fuck would I listen to a song about listening to Marvin Gaye when I could just put I Want You on the hi-fi and lounge around in my panties and Bape socks. Duh.

Best Excuse for Me to Post My Marvin Gaye Denim Photo Series: Big Sean and Kanye West, “Marvin Gaye and Chardonnay.”


(I believe the expression is “Swagger on a Hundred Thousand Trillion,” yes? Oh dear, no, it’s “Oh excuse me miss I couldn’t help but notice your clothing choices are informed by epic musical humans”)

Let’s Get It On (AKA “the denim-shirt session”) was recorded here. Jesus knows I don’t go west of La Brea if I can help it, but I have made a special trip to honor Marvin. The ghosts are still around, I can feel ’em when I walk by.


Also if you are a Marlboro smoker you are that much closer to being like Marvin and maybe we should go on a date.

11. Remember when everyone used to say Nas’ shortcoming was picking post-Illmatic producers who couldn’t provide a good enough canvas on which to paint his verbal pictures? Yeah. I had a feeling you would. Me too.

The whole point of that sentence was to compare today with 10 years ago as I say “I’D LIKE THE INSTRO OF ‘NASTY’ FOR THIS WEEK’s SECOND-FINEST* LOGAN-WALKING-DOWN-THE-STREET ANTHEM PLEASE.” No lyrics; just Salaam Remi. I can do without the lyrics, and it’s a Nas song. Never thought I’d see the day. Today’s world is an odd place. Nas can still read the phone book to me, though, in that sandpapery Queens drawl.

12. *Finest Logan-Walking-Down-the-Street-Anthem (week of 06/12 – 06/19); Outstanding Achievement in Animation: Buddy Leezle, “Drug Dealer” (via GrandGood). This one’s such a delicious headphone banger, you’ll see, though it might take a couple listens.

Do I automatically like a rap video if it’s animated? Am I that easy? Other self-questions this week (i.e., things I stated, out loud, to myself in disbelief):

Lil B is on the next Weezy mixtape?,

Bob Mould is gay??, and

Battles wrote a song about this dude?

13. Juicy J, read me the phone book please! Also what does Anwar do exactly, other than be attractive, charismatic, and have perfect dreads? At least Waka puts out mixtapes and shows up on TMZ sometimes. Anyway, this week’s Best Use of THAT SOUND: “Make It Happen,” Juicy J & Casey Veggies.

That liftoff sound. 00:26 – 00:30. What is that sound called? It’s on every mixtape from the states of Georgia and Alabama. It’s gotta have a name, right? Email me, somebody. I’ll send you a dirty picture* as a big fat thank you.

*Not of me, but still. Be grateful.

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“Women lust over my lyrics like basketball players”: the 10 most romantic things Kool Keith’s ever said.


I ASS said the bumper sticker I saw today while out driving – except, can you believe it, the heart was upside-down, like an ass! It looked just like a nice, curvy bottom! Teehee. It was a message just for me. Religious types say God works in mysterious ways; I just say Well, there it is – a sign that it’s time for me to finally do this Kool Keith post.

What’s that you say? A girl with high self-esteem and several Women’s Studies courses under her belt should know better? A porno-fiend caped rap crusader will only make me cry into my Hello Kitty blanket? He’ll eventually find the hips of another woman to get enveloped in, so I should move on? Oh dear, I’m sorry, I’m sure you have valid points but Keith just arrived and I can’t hear you over the sounds of our vigorous lovemaking. He’s good to me. He doesn’t charge me for twice-daily pelvic exams. He wears a cape (rad), and doesn’t name-drop even though he is friends with Ced Gee and Doomsy (SO RAD). And he’s dependable – Keith’s bread and (sexy) butter is brag-raps, conquest-raps, songs about spanking and biting, tales of headstands and whipped cream, lube and rope, Silly String, stripper shoes, librarian shoes, insisting he gets to be both the cowboy and the Indian when we play cowboys & Indians, insisting I ride the mechanical bull while eating frosting out of the can without a spoon, and for putting his left leg in and shaking it all about. He also goes, um, deep when it comes to romance, but nobody seems to notice. He’s not known for his emotional-connection raps. After years of listening to him and obsessing, though, I’m telling you: Keith wants to make sweet, tender love to me until the sun comes up, and watch this, I can prove it:

1. You’re blonde and weird; let’s get naked, dollface. You’re Dutch/Argentinean, yes? Or wait, no – Persian/Irish? I love you. – “Break U Off,” Diesel Truckers (2004).

Don’t get me wrong now, I like ’em blonde with long hair
They call me Suavere, I like her underwear
She don’t mind posin, she don’t even care
I like her atmosphere, plus she’s out there
The type of girl to break out, yo we outta here
House and closets, model with a lot of gear
She love to clown and pose, spread ’em on the chair
Talk on the rooftop, when she wanna feel some air…
With a see-through nightgown, she got to be Spanish
Brassiere, baby come over here
The mamacita, lick the ice off her back when I freak her
She look Brazilian sometime, her face look unique-a.

Long blonde hair with an ethnically ambiguous face? UH OF COURSE THIS SONG’S ABOUT ME so it had to start the list. Indulge me, please. She’s (meaning me, the romantic lead) blonde, “plus she’s out there,” meaning she might just be the type to have a pic of Harold Rhodes for her laptop background and a blog in which she obsesses over rap lyrics. It would also help if she had an absurdly feminine body shape, but this combination of qualities is just impossible to find in an actual human lady. You’re dreamin, kid.

Blonde girls are like unusual, highlighted birds to Keith. I get it. He’s from the Bronx; blondes are probably rare there. Keith was apparently so smitten he had to take to the microphone and count the ways he loves his fair-haired oddball baby doll space cadet(te?), including her ability to make love to the camera. It is a common theme in sex songs. The big thing on the radio right now is “Double Dip,” an awful/catchy song about repeat coitus. When you texted that pic of your backside to me, the dude says, My reply was like, “Give that right to me.” Points for straighforwardness, sir, but none for romance, originality, or mastery of words that rhyme with “me” (there are about a thousand, for the record). It is boring. Just a boring series of words over an awful/catchy beat. By contrast, Keith somehow makes “spread ’em on the chair” sound fresh and witty, like no other young lady in history thought to pose nakedly for her man, to put her leg like that, open her mouth a little, yes love, just like that – gorgeous! (snap, snap). The fact that he asked me to wear a Hello Kitty onesie and some thigh-highs just before I mounted the mechanical bull and started posing? Just part of the romance, baby.

Basically just a list of all the things he likes about his lady, “Break U Off,” also gets a nod for the lines “Tastes so good, her body like Krispy Kreme” (yum!) and “I love your sweet eyelashes” (aww).


2. Your body! 36-23-JesusChrist.“Telephone Girlfriend,” The Lost Masters (2003)

Answer the phone, honey
You lay on my chest like Max Julien, Cleopatra status
Coke bottle shape, Miss Nubian
Watch your sheer nightgown in the bathroom light
With camel toe showin, I can tell you tight
Loose jeans don’t work, my job is to convert.

Never in mah life have I heard an MC who pays such close attention to a woman’s sleeping and lounging garments. Keith does this over and over in his verses – descriptions of cotton and lace, silk, that satin thong in “Sexy Girl.” He loves drapey, soft things on skin, and he’ll tell you about it over a beat. How sweet. This verse made Top 10 because of that attention to detail, and because of his appreciation of a nightgown, an old-timey garment that your grandma wore, as opposed to one of those lace bodystockings from AA or a corset or something.

I could do without that stupid camel toe part, but the reference to Cleopatra Jones is dope and means Keith clearly likes watching girls with unusual first names who accentuate the waist and wear tight shirts. I also believe Keith has stated his fondness for a mean WHR more creatively in other songs (“Business lady with the Anita Baker haircut and a Coke bottle body” – “I’m Dangerous”), but any lyric about a mean WHR is clearly a lyric about me so it gets a spot on this list. (I’m easy)


3. I like to hear your voice sometimes – not just type messages to you on my phone’s tiny keyboard.“How Sexy,” Dr. Dooom 2 (2008)

I met you, wanted me to buy porno
girl you had it in your hormones
Last night before you talked to me on the phone
I asked you twice to bite my ice cream cone
C’mon be serious-
this ain’t typin a few words back and forth like kids; we grown.

YES. THIS.
“We’ve seen each other naked,” says every girl in the world, including the girl whose blog you are currently reading, “can we sometimes talk, please? Hear each other’s voices?”

I saw a funny bumper sticker about ass! And I made cupcakes, do you want one? I had a dream that I had a kitten! What do you think French Montana and Push Montana talk about at the annual Montana Family Picnic? That new Jeezy n’ Freddie has a lower BPM than I normally like but man when I hear it in the Civic it makes me wanna get back in the narcotics game, like the “Black Betty”/airport scene in Blow! They’re having a Dudes Who Will Not be Seeing Logan Naked conference on stage at the Meadowlands! (well, except for Waka. I believe “He could get it” is the expression-?). 9th Wonder adds “Member of the Universal Zulu Nation” to his self-intro (“Producer/teacher/rapper…”); is that true?? Does he still adhere to the 15 Beliefs, or is he a detractor? There’s a human who calls himself “Black Cobain,” the fuck is that about! They play Frank Ocean on Power 106; is this dope, or a sign of the apocalypse? Dude oh my god Spader simply killed it on The Office! That story about Pyrex is so interesting, and it’s a perfect mix of rap music and science, my two greatest loves! I got ____ and ____ at Amoeba today, and then I brought them home and laid them on my floor and rolled around nakedly on them! Wait, why’d your phone go to voicemail again? Hey boy, let’s talk, cuz WE GROWN. I mean, aren’t we?

It’s not that I’m chatty; it’s that the world is amazing. I think about some dope, weird, silly, dumb stuff and I want to lay it on you in actual conversations once in a while. Actually, I think about all kinds of nice stuff I wanna lay on you, conversationally and otherwise. RAWR.

4. You’re not boring, even when we’re doing boring things. – “Telephone Girlfriend” again

In the living room, on the couch and sofa
Mature female, you act older
No problem at all when I walk with you to the mall
Circle the parking lot, you park and hot (? I think)
At night you booty call, we order things from Pink Dot.

Same song, different romantic scenario. Romance doesn’t have to be dinner upstairs at El Cid (though the empanadas are so SO good) or getting flowers at work; it’s living-room lounging, buying dumb stuff together at CVS on Tuesday after work, then you rolling your eyes during one of my Power 106 dorkout sessions while sitting in traffic (“Racks on racks on racks, LEH’GO”). If the person you’re with is fun even when you’re doing the most mundane things, you’ve got it – a magical, perfect coupling, a lovely picture of relationship beauty – and you should hold onto it. See also: the person you’re with embellishing life accomplishments just to make you smile (“First man from New York City housing to have his face on a $30 bill”), and that person also somehow being more interesting than the NBA playoffs (“I turned the Lakers off, you can’t stop my afterparty/A fifth of vodka and latex, drink your Bacardi” – “Regular Girl”).

This track also includes massaging, a thing that is both a classically romantic gesture and a thing that dudes are deliciously skilled at because they have more upper-body strength than women. It’s science. “Baby oil on your toes while you get wet to my flows” gets an honorable mention as well, simply because I love it. Hi Mom!

Until he says “I love your purple onesie” or “Darling you look spectacular when we’re in apt. 680 and you poke your hip out like that,” I will have to settle for “I see a packed house in different color bodysuits” (“Don’t Crush It”) as the best lyric Keith wrote with me in mind. That cover model, by the way, is Spantaneeus Xtasy. She has starred in Crimson Thighs, Butt-nanza, and The Boobcage 2, which is poorly made and does a terrible disservice to the first Boobcage (don’t even bother with it, I’m serious).

5. Wack rappers be quiet. The world is wondrous and so strange and I’d like to tell you about it with my patented colorful and stylish narrative technique. – “Plastic World,” Sex Style (1997)

As I do see…(??) wack beer commercials
Some rappers are bought and puppeteered like the Ninja Turtles
From Manhattan I heat up, yo light up Times Square

I make noise like open high hats on your cheap snare

No promotional shows, girls wear cornrows

People with hooded sweaters on crack keep me on my toes

I walk with straw hats, fake glasses in the projects
Bring my ghost image so tense on the line of scrimmage

Playing my numbers, waiting for the 5 to come

Spaghetti out the window, people acting dumb
Fire hazards wake the neighbors, your family’s nosy

I come and go as I please on blockhead MCs

You bought new sneakers, no car, scrambling on the corner

I’m not the star you are, the city’s fallen far

By mechanism, you’re on my tip

Stay off my penis, you’ve duplicated me for years.

Go weird or go home, that’s what I always say. Keith lost that nice bouncy “Poppa Large” flow somewhere along the way – spring of ’95, I believe it was – and goddammit if he didn’t made up for it with lyrics like these. References to a drum kit, terrible MCs who are inexplicably successful, and the weirdos prowling the city: this song is romantic because to a lady English major, interesting, well-written rhymes are the sweet love-nectar of life. Also, good storytellers are the highest form of human. Good storytellers get women naked, if they storytell in a way that is romantic yet non-corny (a tricky mix). Sex Style was dope stuff, late-’90s weird-hop, streamofconsciousness-sex-hop, and Keith had no challengers, really (except RA, maybe? at times? Slick Rick and Too $hort, no – they ruled the ’80s sexrap industry but mostly they put out plain old intercourse verses, free from BDSM and mechanical bulls and other Keith-ish weirdisms). Just wait til 2009, though, when a scrappy young buck from the Bay will stroll in and announce he’s Paris Hilton and his chain look like lightning – he’ll polarize the Internet! Anyway, Keith is the rap Trav Bickle, describing NYC as cluttered and greasy and sin-filled, but instead of making me recoil in disgust when he talks about how dirty it is, it makes me want to go there. (This also serves as a metaphor for our sexual life together.) Oh and “stay off my penis” is just funny; no two ways about it*. Romance cannot survive without some humor thrown in.

*I should do a post about mentions of penis in lyrics over the years; seems like a good use of my time but I have a feeling I’ll just keep putting it off. I should also listen to more Gang Gang Dance and finally read The Executioner’s Song but that is probably not happening either.

6. Brokest rapper you know (hi Sean P!) – “Let Me Talk to You,” Masters of Illusion (2000)

I respect you for going with me to Burger King, riding with me in my lil jalopy. Stickin by me, through thick and thin. Goin to White Castle and stuff…ridin around in like a little ’65 Chevy. Can’t afford them Benzes, we can only fantasize.

We forget Keith’s a real person sometimes because of his superb, otherworldly brain, the fact that he was so spacey Thelonious stopped taking his phone calls and he got kicked out of both the Cosmic Echoes and the Arkestra*, and the fact that his overall demeanor is like that of an alien doing an impression of Al Goldstein doing an impression of a dude asking for change in front of the 99Cents store at Willoughby and La Brea. But if Keith’s cut, he bleeds. He likes waffles for breakfast (oh god Keith me too! Me TOO we are meant to be togetherrrrr). He turns up “Owner of a Lonely Heart” when it comes on the car radio for a life-is-wonderful rockout sesh just like everybody else. And he likes his partner to appreciate him for more than his money, because he is huuuuman and he needs to be looooved/just like everybody else doessssss. Keith likes playing games but only the sexy kind, and if you are a lowdown dirty female thinking that you can manipulate him into catching feelings and paying your student loan bill, well, you will probably get a mean-spirited rap song written about you. He wrote groupie-decimating “Dolly and the Rat Trap,” remember. We’re all aware that when the feelings are real and the love is true, cash is often a nice supplement to a romantic relationship (thanks, Jay-Z and Fabolous songs from 10 years ago!). But when cash becomes so terribly important that romance needs it in order to stay alive, why, that’s not romance at all! Love don’t live here anymore!, say all the other songs by Jay-Z and Fabolous.

Again, the details of a sexy courtship are what Keith is so good at, uh, nailing (har) – “Bringing extra underwear to the picnic,” “Drinkin cups of tea by the fireplace,” the importance of doing certain things to her in certain places with care and enthusiasm (I cannot describe these actions or these places here, as I am a lady). And reciprocity, darling: “When a woman loves a man,” he says, “she’ll clean the grime off your feet.” This is true. And when a man loves a woman, he makes a cute cartoon video to accompany one of his most romantic songs. PS, Keith! Benzes are cornball and I like you better without one. I’d rather bob my head in a ragtop (preferably a monkey-green one*) any damn way.

* This is something I just made up and found amusing. So it stays in the post.

7. I did this for you, and that for you, because I’m a nice person. Oh and did I mention I have a Seville?“Supergalactic Lover,” Black Elvis/Lost in Space (1999)

Diamond rings with roses, I put pearls in your noses
Put you in heels, paid your school loans and tons of bills
I ripped eight thousand threw a stack up in the fireplace
You couldn’t believe it, your mom was there with a sad face…
I walked in with cape, with jewels on, you know I’m the captain
Outside by the Cadillac three brothers rappin, soundin wack and
I kept on steppin, legend status, you know my rep and
I see you at 8, turn your pager off, don’t be late…
Supergalactic lover
Comin from the projects on the hill
Supergalactic lover
*In my monkey-green ragtop Seville

“Darling let me tackle that Chase bill for you, and here’s some Phillip Lim stripper-librarian heels in a pretty oxblood color. I’ll pick you up at 8:01 PST in my Detroit-made sedan.”

“OH NO, I couldn’t possib—AW DAMN. WELL, OKAY KEITH, if you insist.”

I can pay my own way but that doesn’t mean I don’t appreciate the offer – even though a supergalactic lover will always take a back seat to a superman lover in my heart.

The student loan hustle is one of the greatest ever concocted by the federal government. What a pain. I need relief. I’m willing to accept cash aid as a form of this relief. I also like pretty, overpriced shoes. And it’s my dream to be able to stop my days of worryation. And I like Cadillacs. And even though I do not even give a tiny bit of a fuck that Thom Yorke sometimes shows up and spazzes out at the Low End Theory, because he is boring and because it’s not the year 1997, ’98, or ’99, I do give a big huge fuck about everything Keith still does even though it’s not ’97 or 8 or 9. The captain put spaceship pictures up on the wall and paid my student loan balance, so if he tells me to turn my pager off, I’m doing it. Being bossed around by someone with more money than you adds an interesting power dynamic to a relationship, and can manifest itself in some pretty intense ways in the bedroom. Or, um, so I am told? (Hi again, Mom!). This one also contains the best mention of “ragtop” since “Bombs Over Baghdad.”

8. ROAD TRIP.“I Want You to Be,” Lost Masters, Vol. 2 (2005)

You made me who I am now, my mind is under all different types
of enjoyin weather in the deep relation
Your feelings are ready for elevation
I need you now to meet me at the station
I need you nowww to meet me at the station

You gotta be there on time
I can’t think no more, I cry to myself by the bed
I can’t sit by the sink no more
Your perfume lingers in my room with the overjoy and pain
I think about you even when it doesn’t rain

People who don’t like road trips are soulless, like Republicans and Serato users. Jot that down. Remember it always.

There’s lots of “let’s run away together” in Avett Brothers songs, Band of Horses songs. Fleet Foxes. Bon Iver. Elliott Smith. My Morning Blitzen Trapper Drive-By ugghhh too tired to finish the list. I have numerous bearded boyfriends with albums full of white girl swoon-y road trip classics. And then there are songs that just make you feel like running away with someone when you hear them (Flying Burrito Brothers, The Band, Bill Callahan, Cass McCombs, side A of Anodyne). You’ll notice that there are no rap groups, or individual MCs, among the musical persons I just named. Keith steps up in this case, though, courting me by tapping into my deeply feminine need to leave it all behind. Even though this song has some horrible singing and Keith kind of phones it in lyrically – lazy cliches about riding horses, analogies about love being like a car or like the road on which you’re driving a car, and he even rhymes wife and life (a wack ’80s R&B move, a lazy cliche) – in the end he saves the day with the “let’s run away together” lazy cliche. Because it works, that’s why. Responsibility and the daily grind are not romantic (grinding daily, however: very romantic). The whole getting-the-you-know-what-outta-Dodge/Echo Park life plan is a cliche for a reason, people: the laydeez love it. I am a lady, and I’m telling you it’s a fact.

That “I can’t sit by the sink no more” line is so sad and touching too. Shit just got really real; DAMN. (All her lady-things are there, you see. Her lotions and perfumes. Brings back memories for the kid. Aw Keith.)



9. Your face appeals to me, as does your commitment to your education. Also I have a rescue fantasy. – “Fine Girls,” Black Elvis/Lost in Space (1999)

I like your pretty eyes
Tell me where you get your hair done, your face so clear
With fourteen carat diamonds in your ear
He beat you up, I’ll eat you up, reheat you up
Come fix your life, make you my wife, improve in time
No wine and dine, don’t waste my time, mature your mind
You’re that fine girl from high school, college graduate
Lady always on my mind, girl can you imagine it?…
Come here girl, I wanna talk to you
I wanna tell you a lot of things

“Come here girl, I wanna talk to you” is standard game kicked at the bar/club/grocery store/DMV (or so I’ve heard about and seen in movies; dudes don’t talk to me, unless they’re at Amoeba, over 55, and looking for that same Mighty Diamonds record as me and keep bumping into my ass in the aisle. Or unless they’re married. Or a cop). But when it comes to Keith and that Bronx lilt of his, such a line is extraordinary and not at all standard. I wanna tualk to you. He’s so specific about what he likes about this particular lady, too – the eyes, the nice skin, the college degree. This song is like his version of “Ice Cream” but without the part complimenting the girl’s rude, crabby demeanor. Keith likes ’em sweet. It all ventures into cliche territory, and because it’s Keith he’s still able to triumph, showing up at my door with some In-N-Out, a nice handwritten note, and something water-based in order to reduce friction between body parts. Horoscopes are a big collection of cliches too, but that doesn’t mean they don’t make me feel good (today for Aries: “The one who recognizes that there is something special in you will capture your heart.” AWW).

10. No means YES. – “Sexual Intruder,” Personal Album (2004)

I had to honor Personal Album somewhere in this post just on the strength of its song titles (“I Do What I Want”; “A Black Kid Who Think He’s White”; “Girl Wanna Kill Herself”). I would not have been able to live with myself otherwise.

Lead singer up front, you feel me like The Temptations
The way I gave you the world
Send you to learn about the (M)oments, on a thousand vacations
With you sick in the hospital, I bought you the flowers
They were (B)lack (I)vory, they made you cry with heavy (E)motions
Your back and night was rubbed down professional
with sweet cucumber lotion, with all my time and devotion
You cried about the bills your ex-man had left you with
Throwin rocks into the ocean
I heard your (W)hispers all the way to my ear, on a foggy night
You walkin with one of your Pomeranians, 3 Dog Nights
With Pitts comin you was in shock
I couldn’t let 3 dogs fight (I couldn’t let 3 dogs fight)…
Waitin in the emergency room for your mild concussions
You knew your heart always and forever
Through the (H)eatwave, your body was rushin

You had to get to your own apartment, you didn’t want to say with your cousin
Your mom always fussin, takin a train from the Grand (Graham) Central Station
When I was on stage, nothin could stop you from faintin
Grabbin my hand on the spot, you was scared under the shy (Chi) lights (Lites)
With apple bottoms on, jeans fittin tight
Beggin me to put on your direct light, in love like a sex slave
Sippin red Alize under the purple light, sexual intruder
Sexual intruder, I’m your sexual intruder…

Weird-hop! Can’t get enough! This song is a big collection of WTF, but sometimes you need that in a relationship. Boredom kills, you know; keep me guessing and I’ll be yours forever. The whole storyline Keith lays out here, for example – huh? Was she attacked by dogs? Is her medical prognosis good? Did she and Keith do it in her hospital bed? I’ll be thinking about all that later (I’ll probably call you, since a text can’t capture the raw emotion), but for now I want to swoon over the fact that KEITH MAKES CUTE PUNS OUT OF OLD R&B GROUP NAMES. It’s romantic when someone uses a song to talk to you – in this case, Heatwave’s “Always and Forever.” I can’t believe Keith really flipped it and bounced it like that; I mean, it really is just like a dream to me that somehow came true, and I know tomorrow will still be the same, because Keith and I? We’ve got a life of love that won’t ever change, and every day (I’m hoping) he’ll love me his own special way. Keith’s mention of the Temps’ lead singer speaks to me as well, for I believe my feelings about the god David Ruffin are well-documented. Cloud Nine-era Temptations were fantastic. Puzzle People, yes of course. Psychedelic Shack, great. I like it all. But c’mon – nothing beats coked-up-Ruffin-era Temptations in my book/heart/soul.

Back to the song. Keith calls himself an intruder, and there’s a clear element of Keith as the bawss here (because sweetheart that’s what you signed up for as soon as you replied to that first MySpace message from him), but this song tells the story of a relationship between two willing grown-ups. He wants to dominate but not shame you, plus you can agree on a safe word ahead of time! A fulfilling erotic life can often involve expressions of submission, consensual use of restraint, intense sensory stimulation, and fantasy role-play. Or, if you’re still just 19 or 20: it more frequently involves staring, fantasizing, daydreaming, trying to distract yourself from daydreaming, writing rap songs, and being mad at the girl while also wanting her to put on a sundress and run away with you (“Usually I just stalk you and masturbate” – Ty). The power differential between Keith and his lady is only a pretend one, and besides, he could never scare anybody – he’s got this innocence to him that’s always there, even though he says rectum a thousand times on his albums. Sometimes it seems like Keith’s talking sexy when he’s really just trying to battle (“I roll wit globs and I come real sticky”), but for the most part he keeps it pretty straightforward (“Take Off Your Clothes”; “Take Off Your Panties”; “Girl Let Me Touch You”) and a lady has to respect that. Plus that lascivious, good-natured way about him, coupled with an NY borough accent, sorta makes him the Tracy Morgan of rap-?

The Temptations, “Since I Lost My Baby.” Written by Smokey R.!

mp3.

Bonus romance:

11. Kindness, hand-holding, compliments, etc.“Let Me Talk to You” again

My name is Keith
We got some nice things for the ladies…
Go get the ladies some flowers and stuff
Other people don’t love them like we do. We care.

Gentlemen, your crew is soft, Keith says. You take the industry too seriously. You live at home with your mom. You’re wearing a cheap suit from Men’s Wearhouse and I do NOT like the way you look. But your life’s biggest tragedy, he says, is that you don’t love your girl like you should. Start, immediately. Tell her (nicely) to kneel down to her kitten bowl, for starters, then shout sexy girl a bunch of times. Does she look sexy eating popcorn? Tell her! Take a lesson from the captain. (With your bitch ass.)

.

Don’t start nothing, it won’t be nothing/You wanna start something, it’s gon be somethin (Scrappin: variations on a theme).

Mac Premo, Number Two, He Doesn’t Have the Pants, 2008,
mixed-media assemblage with animation, 19 ½” x 18 ½” x 9 ½”

1. A photo of Mr. Premo’s work was in the Paris Review I was reading last night in apt. 680, in between taking tasteful erotic photographs of myself to send to Lil B, baking a pie, and peeking out of my blinds to see when Lil B’s going to come walking up the stairs to my door. It’s the spring 2011 edition, and Édouard Levé’s piece is great. It’s really really good, you guys (“I do not consider myself handsome just because a woman thinks so. I prefer desire to pleasure. My death will change nothing”) and not just because it’s titled, beautifully, When I Look at a Strawberry, I Think of a Tongue.

Even though the only (visual) art worth my time is Kruger’s stuff and Baldessari and oh Pettibone I suppose and THAT FUCKING RAMMELLZEE ROOM AT MOCA (an experience from which I still have not recovered), I like Mac Premo’s work, and I like the fact that “Mac Premo” sounds like the name of the producer of Jeru’s next album (he’s Premier’s cousin).

2. Hindi is how you say “NO” in Tagalog. Now we all know what to scream at our televisions during Pacquiao’s walk to the ring while accompanied by a corrections officer.

The fuck/whyyyyyy/NO/hindi.



If I were in charge, things would be different; Rawss would not exist of course, but let’s say I was feeling generous and allowed him both to continue living and to escort a boxer into the ring prior to a huge televised match. I would insist that Rawss escort the other guy–not Pacquiao. Ricky Rose Hey should definitely be walking next to “Sugar” Shane just based on pure similiarity, as they have both co-opted the names of historically successful individuals in order to enhance their own myths/reputations. This is a lazy, sorry move, the kind that bitchy dudes make. Boxing is so lame, I’ve addressed that fact and provided supporting evidence on this blog before – unless we’re talking about the boxer Zab Judah, which is a really fucking dope name for a human.

3. Does anyone recognize that sweatsuited side-leg?


No? What if I said “Renegades, Escalades, all fly ladies in shades/Get the best of me, bless me on stage”? IT’S RAE! IT’S RAE AND HE’S IN MY TOWN ON THIS NIGHT.


If I were going to the show and could somehow get backstage without using sex, I would look him square in the face and say, First of all: nice warm-ups on that promo flyer. They weren’t Champion, but still. Very nice.

Then I’d get down to business. Hey, remember when you or one of your colleagues blacked-out Budden’s eye socket? I blogged about it like crazy that week, as did everyone else with a computer and an opinion! I was so happy it happened! Thank you! I heard Joe said you asked for an apology, and he obliged – “only because he was outnumbered”! What a fuckin dummy! Why’d you have to make up with him, though? There’s not enough beef in 2011 rap. And how did you and Randy Spelling meet?*


* Rae’s working with Randy Spelling, a thing that has been added to 2011’s Mysteries List. “How did Rae link with Spelling’s kid” is now in there, right at the top, along with “Why does everyone like The Weeknd,” “Who keeps downloading Rawss’ shit and making him successful,” and “How come the first sip of iced coffee is always the best.”

Rae also has a rapper in his stable named “Polite,” a person from whom I am telling you right now I will never buy or download product.

4. “Tattoo Artist Who Owns Mike Tyson’s Face Sues The Hangover Studio for Copyright Infringement” (Gawker). Click the link and you’ll find a story about some loser who has trademarked the sorta-ethnic-but-not-sure-which-part-of-Samoa-it’s-from “tribal” design on Tyson’s face. That loser is suing the losers who made The Hangover, an unfunny major-studio production that everyone loved because everyone’s an idiot.

Tribal anything on your flesh is ridiculous; I come from a coastal city in Southern California so I am a certified expert in this matter. (I also know about chain wallets, putting huge tires on your white Chevy truck, and yelling at your girlfriend in public). But in a post about pugilism you know Tyson’s gonna show up so I had to include this story. These days everyone loves soft, repentant Mike – playing with his birds, taking his kids to the park. Dullsville Mike, in other words. The Mike who gets glorified in apt. 680 is the Mike who said, “I don’t try to intimidate anybody before a fight. That’s nonsense. I intimidate people by hitting them.” Mike Tyson, Brooklyn-bred unsubtle face-hitter ALL DAY.

5. Yes yes of course the Lakers need to come stronger in this next series, I don’t wanna talk about it but yes they really need to perform as more of a cohesive unit, 110%, fewer mistakes, hard in the paint, Pau needs to show up, lalalalaaaa yeah yeah. I don’t want to talk about Nowitski or Butler or Terry. I don’t wanna discuss what we are going to do about my Moscato addiction, or when I will stop stripping and settle down, etc. I just want to talk about how great Chappelle’s Show reruns are, always coming on at just the right time. I was still pouty this week because every skinny white girl in the world except me was doing some bikini-clad cooking in Lil B’s audience in the desert a little while ago but they were doing it wrong, 94% of white girls do it wrong. Then good ol’ Comedy Central comes through in the clutch, showing some TV perfection from 2004.

Random Tribute: DMX’s jabs and left hook between 1:11 and 1:18. DMX was terrific in his prime and I loved him; people think I’m kidding when I say that because how could I like DMX, that’s crazy!, since I like little girls in glasses and I’m polite and soft-spoken, but I’m not kidding. That voice, dragged through gravel! That cadence! I’m not-a. nice. person/I mean, I’d smack the shit out you twice dog, and that’s before I start cursin. (I also really like the name Spider Loc and people think I’m kidding about that too. Um, I’m not kidding. They all think it’s a game. They think it’s a fuckinnnn gaaaaame.) To put the performance below in context and remind you of the levels of perfection: this ep also had Negrodamus, the Niggar Family, and WacArnold’s. Fucking perfection, I said.

Directly-related additional Random Tributes: 1. that “UH OH” just erupting outta DMX when “What’s My Name” starts. The smile, the genuine excitement. So sweet. 2. Swizz Beatz in ’98/9 and ’03/4: the party-starter. Those beats/z he crafted made me want to be a boy and throw a punch, kinda; I settled for car-dancing ferociously whenever somebody put It’s Dark and Hell is Hot in the car’s CD changer. Grand Champ was, um, grand when it emanated from the stereos of Japanese compacts as well. GITITONTHEFLOOR, git it git it on the floor! Who didn’t want to get it on the floor when DMX yelled it over those drums? Alas, he has softened with age, which is typical of producers. It’s 2011 and things aren’t the same. Now he’s got the terrible beats of an old and feeble man, and let’s not forget the Shep Fairey tattoo. OH SWIZZY.

Judgement Day – “Mike Tyson’s Punch-Out (Training Song).”

mp3.

DMX – “What’s My Name.” What y’all really wannnnnnt, what y’all really wannnnnt, etc.

mp3.

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I’m a true master, you can check my credentials.


Fidel Castro makes a surprise appearance at the 6th Communist Party Congress in Havana April 19. (Javier Galeano/AP)

Fidel lookin fresh to fucking death in his Fila warm-ups. Got a freaky, freaky, freaky-freaky flow/Control the mic like Fidel Castro locked Cuba.
http://www.boston.com/bigpicture/2011/04/cuba_looks_back_-_and_forward.html#photo18

You wanna front what?
Jump up and get bucked
If you’re feeling lucky duck
Then press your luck
I snatch fake gangsta MC’s and make em faggot flambe
Your nine spray; my mind spray
Malignant mist steadily pumps the funk
The results you’re a gang stuffed in a car trunk
You couldn’t come to the jungles of the East poppin that game
You won’t survive get live catchin wreck is our thing
I don’t gang bang or shoot out bang bang
The relentless lyrics the only dope I slang
I’m a true master you can check my credentials
Cuz I choose to use my infinite potentials

So deep that you can scuba dive/my jive
Origin is unknown like the Jubas
I’ve accumulated honies all across the map
Cuz I’d rather bust a nut then bust a cap in
Ya back in fact my rap snaps ya sacroilliac
I’m the mack so i don’t need to tote a Mac
My attack is purely mental and its nature’s not hate
It’s meant to wake ya up out of ya brainwashed state
Stagnate nonsense but if you persist
You’ll get ya snotbox bust you press up on this
I flip hoes dip none of the real niggas slip
You don’t know enough math to count the mics that I ripped
Keep the Dirty Rotten Scoundrel as his verbal weapons spit

Verse Two:

Real rough and rugged, shine like a gold nugget
Every time i pick up the microphone i drug it
Unplug it on chumps with the gangsta babble
Leave your nines at home and bring your skills to the battle
You’re rattlin’ on and on and ain’t sayin nothing
That’s why you got snuffed when you bump heads with Dirty Rotten
Have you forgotten, i’ll tap you [jaw]
I also kick like kung fu flicks by run run shaw
Made frauds bleed every time I g’d
Cuz i’ve perfected my drunken style like sam seed
Pseudo psychos i play like Michael
Jackson when i’m bustin ass and breakin backs
Inhale the putrified aroma
Breathe too deep and you’ll wind up coma-
tose the king i’m hard like a fifth of vodka
And bring your clique cuz i’m a hard rock knocka
I gotcha, out on a limb i’m about to push you off the brink
Let you draw your craw but you burnin’ shot breaks
When the East is in the house you should come equipped

Fly like a jet sting like a hornet
Knuckleheads get live and set it off if you want it
Dirty rotten scoundrels is crushin fools no joke
With styles more fatal than second hand smoke
Don’t provoke the wrath of this rhyme inventor
Cuz I blow up spots like the world trade center
Come with the super trooper on his assault mission
The tech’s technique cuz he’s a technician
Wishin he’ll go away won’t help the weapons stop
The skills are shot cuz any idiot can let off a glock
Hard rock smellin the clutch of this untoucha
You claim you got beef on the streets so whatcha
Gonna do when real niggaz roll up on you
And you don’t got your crew
Pull your glock but you don’t got the heart
You was webbed straight from the start
Bought a tool and didn’t learn how to use it
Got lost in Brooklyn so you had to lose it
Just for frontin you got that ass waxed

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