“How come the things that make us happy make us sad?” asked golden-voiced philosopher Frankie Beverly. His question was in response to unstoppable rap machine Curren$y putting out song after song with Wiz Khalifa. “Well, it seems to me,” Frankie said, “that joy and pain are like sunshine and rain.”
Sigh. Yes, Frankie. YES. It seems that way to me, too. Like every young lady with a computer and a working pair of ears, I love Curren$y. I hate Wiz. They keep doing songs together, and that’s a zig-zag-y journey through the joy and pain regions of my brain. (It’s also a Zig Zag journey, of course! teehee.) I’m not an MC, but since I can stand upright and speak basic English, I am pleased to announce my impending fame, including but not limited to being on the cover of Smooth! and getting a fake naked girlfriend for promo purposes. I’m told I should also have a likeable personality, which, OK, done, and get close with some cheesy Nordic producers which, oh dear, will take a little bit of work. Have faith, though – in a month or two I’ll be skyping Curren$y while Antwerp-bound which sounds dirty but it’s not.
1. “Rooftops,” from Rolling Papers (produced by Big Jerm)
Wiz, signed and rich (richer than me, anyway, and to me that’s rich):And they say they ballin’, but I do it how the pros do/Where we goin’ next week I let my hoes choose/No socks and my boat shoes/Guess a n—a eatin’ good like Whole Foods.
Do, choose, shoes, Foods. Seuss raps. When done correctly, in a New York accent (AUDIO TWO) or in a Louisiana accent (White carpet in my Scarface house/No undergarments on my Scarface spouse), it’s rap perfection. Rapfection. When not done well, it’s Wiz. I simply cannot explain this phenomenon, nor do I care to try, because then I’d sound like a Pitchfork writer and they never post pictures of themselves in bathing suits so they are losers.
Logan, unsigned/poor, Moleskine full of rhymes: Somethingsomething much- ballyhooed/Don’t know what I like more – devil’s pie or devil’s food/Blah blah, Premier’s a porn fiend, plus he got hops & barley ’cause it’s home brewed/…uhhhh…Tell the driver to fire up that Marley, I wanna hear some “Mellow Mood”-?
I’m sure many of you out there could get loose over the beat, go in a completely different direction than me, use that sad horn as punctuation for a tale of a break-up or a death instead of this lowest-common-denominator drivel I have presented here (porn, beer, cake, A/A rhyme scheme). But this is a copy-Wiz exercise and it therefore needs to be as mindless as possible. Other than the part where I made Premier into a craft-beer specialist, what?, I promise you that no creative juices flowed in the composing of this verse (which took me about 14 seconds). Everybody likes being high? Well then, put it in your verse! Everybody knows fresh-faced mid-’60s Studio One rocksteady Marley was the best Marley? It goes in the fuckin verse! Also, you’ll notice that the term “Marley” works in 2 ways here, which just shows that when I really apply myself for 14 seconds I can come up with some lyrical blasts to your freaking head. Oh my lorrrrd, I am absolutely killingit. Wiz, you ain’t got no job security.
Curren$y, diminutive rapstar millionaire:You n—s ain’t help us – on second thought, you did/The hatin’ was the fuel for this shit.
JETLIFEFOOOOOLLLLAHTEIHIQ#N+*HMM7LLFH9Y%ILEH5NFU*^7WEHR. I get excited and my fingers get all quivery! CAN’T TYPE! TOO EXCITED. Anyway, it’s JET LIFE, now, tomorrow, always, goddamn you if you’re not on board with this, jet life forever and ever amen, so “fuel” works 2 ways here. His verse is unremarkable, but that’s ok; you’ve heard his voice, right? (This might be a girly thing; forgive me). Plus he’s got that accent, the star of every damn one of his songs (even when it’s not a song, it sounds like a song ’cause his way of speaking is so sing-songy. Conversationally, he’s a musical genius.) He sneaks in a “whoadie,” which he rarely does and that is so weird to me, because if I were from N.O. I’d say it all the time just because I could. The hell do people from Pittsburgh say? NOTHING. They have no slang because nobody cares what they say, or what they do, or the shoes they wear, or how they feel about things.
2. “Dot Dot Dot,”from some upcoming mysterious mixtape creation, with Big Sean (produced by Big Jerm)
Wiz:King size papers, king size bed/N—s blow money but I’d rather keep mine instead/Roll something n—a, blow something/Say you’re ballin out of control/Let a n—a hold something.
Logan, better than Wiz:Earl Stevens calls it gouda, I was raised to call it ‘bread’/got so much I retired, hired Doom to read me the phone book, somethingsomething… Rosebud the sled/Butterflies in my tummy, drinking tea, lying in bed/…uhhhhhm, fuck this is rather difficult. You must be outta your head if your system ain’t up to the red (?).
I don’t know, maybe I’m not as good at this as I thought. I start to plagiarize, my brain just pulling out random lines I remember and love from the rap years ’97 or ’03, and then Citizen Kane was on AMC the other night. I’m easily influenced. And those drums, so pretty and Black-Milk-esque!, they cloud my thoughts. I can’t focus on telling the story. But go easy on me, please. Be nice. I’m just starting. You’ll note, however, that even though I’m no good I’m still a heavier hitter, lyrically speaking, than Wiz. I’m also a heavier hitter in literal terms, because even though my hip bones stick out a little, I probably outweigh WK, rap’s Skeletor, by about 15 lbs. I thought weed was supposed to be an appetite stimulant.
Curren$y:It has been said I keep one rolled up like LL’s pants leg/Full of life in this bitch, though I may seem half-dead/Trust me, I’m cool/I just ain’t talking to you.
Critical bias on the part of the blogger: this man’s words speak to me. He’s looking right at me as he says this. Except for the pant leg part, it’s a summary of me interacting with every LAPD officer at Starbucks downtown (2nd and Central; COPS LOVE ME and it is a terrible burden with which I have been saddled). Trust me, officer; I’m cool. I’m way cool. Thanks for holding the door for me but I’m not interested in chatting and I never ever talk like this because I am a lady but I’d just like you to know I don’t fuck with pigs, dog (Muslim), you have a great day now.
3. “Flowers”(that mixtape with Big Sean; Big Jerm)
Wiz:How the fuck could you hate this/Half of these people aint real, n—s shape shift/That’s why I’m smoking OG til I’m weightless/Yeah and my homies are Taylor Gang/We rolling up papers and yeah of course they gon hate/But fuck what they say, ’cause we gon stay the same.
Logan, making a fool of Wiz like this is the parking lot at Osborn High:“I knew it had went off. I saw the fire, like, come through my jeans/I took a couple more steps and my jeans were like — my jeans are wet/And I looked down. I had some Chuck Taylors on/and they were — the white was all red/I’m in trouble.”
Curren$y:Now pan on them lenses and focus on the dopest/In the Mitchell & Ness Marino, see how far back I done throwed it.
It’s a throwback, darling. A throw-back. Marino was a QB (he threw back). This verse coming right after mine is genius, because we’re both making reference to the NFL. So for the sake of the song it doesn’t really matter that Marino is dullsville, as is the entire Dolphins squad except for the fact that Trick is a fan, but Marino was in Ace Ventura and that was kind of cool and unexpected of him. So now I really really want Curren$y to throw in something Ace Ventura-related, maybe on Verde Terrace? (update, after I just listened to it: nope). Ace Ventura‘s kind of a stoner movie, right? No? A little? Am I out of touch here? Anyway, the ultimate would be Curren$y coming out with a song called “Laces Out,” a duet about footwear with fellow shoe whore Bun B. Or maybe a mixtape called If I’m Not Back in 5 Minutes, Just Wait Longer.
4. “Fly N—s Do Fly Things” (the How Fly mixtape; Sledgren)
Wiz:Influenced by the reefer but I’m still positively speaking/Heading down to New Orleans, fuck with Spitta for a weekend/Exotic bitches freakin, minks on the rug/I’m living Clicquot dreams, pouring drinks in the tub/One life to live, so I’ma live it up.
That beat is pretty all right with me but that’s probably because I’m a sucker for echo-y handclaps and because I have “Bass Boost” checked off in my laptop’s Speaker Enhancements tab (which makes everything sound fantastic). Yeahhh, bitch, Wiz says to start the song, and that’s funny because that’s exactly what I say to myself every time I hear a Wiz-less Curren$y song. Yayyy and Thank God are also what runs through my head. I don’t give a fuck, Wiz says a little later, which describes both his attitude about the world as well as my attitude about Wiz making another song for as long as we both shall live. Heading down to N.O., fuck with Spitta, Wiz adds. I am aware of the transactional nature of rap friendships – the potential to earn revenue trumps all, yes? – but clearly, Curren$y’s not being up front with Wiz. Come to my city, hang out with me, Spitta says, but this is only possible because Wiz has a friend named “Chevy,” and Curren$y’s bowtied til he dies.
Logan (my primary goal here is to get the keys to the jet and I will spend my entire verse trying to convince Curren$y to hand them over):Eatin gumbo with a Neville; it’s Cyril, he doesn’t have a DeVille/So Spitta, I have a request (you don’t ask, you don’t get)/Don’t need your spaceship, your Francesca, your Eldorado, your Corvette/Escort with the paint messed up from that accident at Kohl’s/Please lemme get keys to the jet; headed overseas, seein’ Dumile n’ Dennis Coles.
Ha, nobody thought I had any NOLA raps. Shame on you. I’m not upset with Wiz for wanting to hang out down there; he and I both have this fantasy about “accidentally” running into Mannie at Winn-Dixie after stalking him for several weeks and getting a feel for his shopping patterns. The air is thick with the spirit of good MCs who’ve walked the streets of the city, and also thick with suffocating swamp air. Every cab driver looks like Professor Longhair, and I see Chris Paul in the car next to me at every stoplight. We don’t even mind the mosquitoes, me and Wiz, since we get it how we live and hug the block, lalalalaaa, les bon temps are rouler-ing left and right, life is wonderful, geaux Saints, I’m IN. Game feels it, too – wanting to join Cash Money and all. Oh, hey, guess what, Game? Me too, Game! ME TOO. Probably not happening for either of us, though. Sorry, Game. We must all know our limitations*.
*(I can’t get away with using “beasting” as a verb in conversations about the performances of NBA players, or the word “jawn” in any context, nor will I ever have the pale-skinned, hip-less steezyness of Leigh Lezark. I’ll also never have a name as rad as Jason Goldwatch’s. But accepting the things we cannot change allows us to conserve our energy and focus on the things we can.)
This look is foxy and it is just not possible for me. It’s not in the cards. Not ever. (Sigh.)
Curren$y:Would it be cliche to start my verse saying something that I always say?/The planes got it, I perfected my roll in the sunset/Aeronautics, I swear on my soul I would never co-sign some nonsense/Muscle car auction, I just cop it and then go ride it/Wait for the night to set, then really pop it and drive it/Bitches run on the side of it like those little Jamaican kids.
META RAPS! Critical bias on the part of the blogger: META RAPS are the alpha and the omega. Take the first letter out of each word in this joint, for example (Mt. Vernon fresh). Verse number 2, do the damn thing (guilty-pleasure/Nitti fresh). Last time on a Khaled remix/Now I’m on the original version (guilty-pleasure/Luda fresh). I know they gonna criticize the hook on this song (“can I live?” fresh). The violin on “Knowledge God” sounded ill (gods-in-the-Wu-pantheon fresh). Also, META GEORGIAN FUNK (50% of James Brown songs – him discussing the song breaking down while it’s breaking down. Breakdown fresh), and let’s not forget META TEXAN FUNK. “Come on and tighten up that bass,” Archie Bell said, “Oh yeah. Now look here – I want that guitar to fall in on there. Tighten it up now. Oh. Yeah. Now tighten it up, organ. Yeah.” (KCRW with the assist here, for being fresh and playing “Tighten Up” while I was out driving for my government job yesterday morning).
5. “O.T.T.R.” (that mixtape with Big Sean; Big Jerm)
Wiz:I’m moving at top speed, my engine is foreign/I travel across seas where women are gorgeous/And ni—s know it’s us, we make it tough to mistake it/Just let me roll it up and when it’s stuffed, we blaze it/Then we Off To The Races.
Logan, embarrassing Wiz:I’m still working on it, but I do know the hook will be something about how I’m off to my new Caprice/since I’m bowtied til I die (“O.T.M.N.C.S.I.B.T.I.D.”). And it’ll embarrass Wiz, of course, yayyyy, because Wiz and I have to keep it theatrical whenever we meet up for a “freestyle skirmish in the parking lot,” AKA my daydream-y brain while I’m at work. It’s like that Murs/Eyedea smiley throwdown except I am both Murs and Eyedea, and Wiz isn’t qualified to be my adversary – he’s just there to give me fresh Aquafina bottles as needed.
Curren$y: And I’ma Pimp, see (C!), leaning in my ride like how Bun be (B!)/Sittin’ tall on my chrome, see, but I’m low in the seat/My girl in the sheet fast asleep, I’m in the street after the cheddar/Peddlin’ melodies, purchasin’ better things/On the road to the riches I done drove over n—-s.
Critical bias on the part of the blogger:UGK raps fill up all the empty places inside me, as do musician-name-pun raps, and this one’s so freaking fine, it’s like the 2011 version of Andre Ben’s I’m so like a pimp, I’m glad it’s night. I also devour raps about girls doing nothing, girls lounging, girls sleeping – especially raps that also include the beautiful, surprisingly un-corny phrase “peddling melodies.” Women need more sleep than men (it’s science), and I greatly appreciate the kindness of someone who lets me stay curled up in bed, the queen of dreamland, while he goes out and handles it. That’s a good man, no two ways about it. (No two ways BOUT IT, neither, since at this point I am an honorary Louisianan). I can’t wait til we get married and I get some South infused in my speech and start referring to him as my huzzzbin. When we come to California to visit my family on holidays, we stop in LA to hang out with Nick Dahhhhmond. And at this point I’d like to provide a shout from the bottom of my tender heart to all the ladies out there who, like me, Karen Hill, and Amber Rose, realized long ago they’d never make good cops’ or teachers’ wives. Sorry, Mom.
Side note: FUCKING LOOK AT THIS QUARTET OF BADASS JEWISH GIRLS FROM QUEENS.
1. Informative emails from my darling readers are a mixed bag, emotionally speaking.
Joy: Finding out it’s called the rising synth!Of fucking course that’s what it’s called; use your head, Logan.Disappointment: Person who sent a yelling email that I “should familiarize (myself) with Wayne from the Sqad Up days!!” (Thanks, dollface – just please be a little more gentle with me next time.) I also received an email instructing me to “stop the hocus pocus,” which made me even more self-conscious than normal, then confused, then kinda giggly, and then finally I settled on FUTURE MIXTAPE TITLE.
2.“Milk the Cow”! What could possibly be disappointing about the new video for an old Cappa song?
How can I possibly respect Mr. Diamonds as a man when he insists on calling himself that. Luckily, there’s still the chika-pow on the hook, Cap’s “ode to joy” interpretive dance throughout the video, and Meth shouting out “bad birds that fuck nerds” at the end. HE SAYS BAD BIRDS THAT FUCK NERDS and I’ve never felt more satisfied. (Sorry for about 50 things I just typed, Mom)
3. Drake remains an easy target so I’d be a fool not to take advantage. Positive (boring) comments: In the “I’m On One” video, they do a good job of creating a melancholy landscape to match the tone of the song. It’s this weird party in the future, where everyone’s had a lobotomy and there’s no electricity; I can’t say I approve of the concept, but it’s certainly executed well. And this part, where the hook kicks in, perfectly mimics what I do in the Civic when the song comes on the radio:
BUT (negative/joyful comments):
I cannot get over 1. the pinky raang, and 2. grown people who count like that (using the pinky for 1 instead of 5, like the good lord intended). Nelly has arrived to demonstrate a nice clean finger style, from the video for the “Racks” remix:
“Down to the Dirty,” he says, those hand motions his deeply human way of manifesting the music-joy coursing through his bloodstream,
“back up to the trap.” Simple, effective. Perfect for the Civic. I’ve been known to do this one myself.
4. Home-team hats: lately I’ve been talking about them in every other post. They are lovely for donning, gentlemen. And why is Nel wearing a carbiner? I feel like I’m back among my people (barefoot, idealistic, goofy, vegan) at Santa Cruz! Nells and I are meeting up later to bicker about Chomsky, then maybe climb a mountain.
“2 things is for certain, mayne
and 1 thing is fa sho.” Also a great hand-move for the car (when any song involving numbers 1 through 10 comes on). Bonus points for the baseball shirt, which I love on a dude.
5. Then frowny-face here has to show up in the frame, which is disappointing. These two standing next to each other makes it seem like a lady only has pretentious mixtape dropper or creatine-shakes drinker/dogtags wearer to choose from in the gentleman department, UNTIL
Jay makes his entrance. I APPROVE OF THE TIGHTNESS AND RIGHTNESS THIS OUTFIT. I believe it would have been referred to as buttery in an old Menace skate video. Buttery kit, my friend. Oh and that new Keith Murray we listened to in your Maxima is dooooope, though not quite as good as that Above the Law. If those are True Religions I’m going to kill myself. I mean it. Pills, probably (I want something painless). Nice knowing you guys; divide up my records amongst yourselves.
6. “I’m on One” again, or maybe it’s more appropriate to say “I’m (still) On One”? Either way, we have a scene in which Wayne corners a lady in a parking garage while they are both hiding from the zombies who prowl the streets above. (This video is really fucking stupid and has no common narrative thread weaving the scenes together.)
Weezy’s prowling around her like he’s Prince, body language screaming Go to bed with me. This is the part in his verse where he says he’s going to “Put an end to your world like the Mayans.” That’s a really fresh thing to say, clever indeed, and I would love it if somebody would corner me in a club or at Vons and say that. I’m sort of odd, though. Most of us don’t want to hear you talking about the art of murking right when you are trying to get us to take our clothes off.
Then an old friend shows up!:
BABYYYYYY! His presence still delights me, after all this time. What can I say, I enjoy a southern gentleman. By the way, Littles Weezy and B, respectively, did a song together in which they try to out-weird each other and it’s a little tiresome. The most interesting thing about the whole affair is when Wayne says No Limit Records: we so bout it bout it (“Grove St. Party” uhh “freestyle”?), a phrase which still delights me, after all this time. Also “Nolia Clap” (remix, because it’s the best version) and Tracy Morgan ESPN video game commercials from yearrrrrs ago. (delightful)
7. My pa is the Birdman, I’m rich as a white man/I come to your show and kill you and your hypeman, Dwayne says in “Rollin.” I don’t know where it comes from but I love a good murder rap. I swear I was hugged enough as a little girl so I can’t really explain. This one in particular is really something, following the first-person narrative formula of most of my favorite songs since 1992: 1. I’m important/I know people, 2. I’m rich, and 3. I will end you. The F in Weezy’s name stands for nothing, by the way, because his middle name is Michael. Stop the hocus pocus, Dr. Carter.
8. A lottttttta size 38, 40, 42 waist jeans in this pic, people. And that’s the way I likes it. (Joy)
Funk Flex, a man whose ability to annoy me through the sheer power of voice is unparalleled, is hosting this “Legends” performance in NYC – and if that’s not some juxtaposition to prove the rap gods are playing a trick on you, I don’t know what is. “Yes Logan, you can stand in a dark room and drink in Monch’s stories, but you have to tolerate a radio jock doing his impression of a dentist’s drill before and after Monch’s set. And what if I told you Dru Ha would probably be there, and Evil Dee would definitely be there? And Sean P would probably make fun of everyone in a super stylish way like a rap Don Rickles? But remember: DENTIST’S DRILL. (evil laugh).”
The show’s tonight and geography says I am unable to attend, but if I could somehow get there I’m guessing I would be informed by Flex that it’s going down and reminded that I know what it is at various times throughout the evening. Also I am sad because nobody will get to hear me proclaim drunkenly, “I believe it was Paul McCartney who said, ‘Tell me tell me tell me the answer. You may be a lover but you ain’t no dancer. HELTAH SKELTAH.’”
9. THIS is my chiva. My china white. My subbies, snorted (not under the tongue; that takes too long).
Today I learned that that Toussaint record was Prince Paul’s! There’s actually nothing disappointing about this; I just had to post it. I also learned that tinny snare sound on “I Wanna Be Your Man” was created by using a pair of scissors! SCISSORS. Hire me for your next party; I can spout this stuff for hours. And OK, fine, if you’d like a skinny girl to jump out of a giant cake, I got you.
When I’m mad at the Internet for being a shill for Rick Ross, Inc., I turn to my greatest muse—the records of apt. 15.
Name: Skyy, Skyway. (Salsoul, 1980)
Is this OK? Yes. Skyy vodka is bad (Belve, strictly Belve for this lady when Lloyd Banks and I get bottle service), but Skyy is a pretty fresh name for a band and I’m surprised it wasn’t already taken. Still, I’m a little mad they didn’t name the album Skyyway. How bout some consistency, please.
Entered my life: In August ’07, at Amoeba for $5.99.
Produced by: Randy Muller, keyboardist, disco architect, member of Brass Construction (!).
Life lessons, important messages contained:
– Handclaps. Just handclaps. They are, in fact, somehow a lesson. I learned at age 3; I think it hit me when my dad played Look-Ka PyPy in the living room.
– If you’re going to copy someone, really put some thought into it and copy the best (Chic).
Suitable activities while listening: Uh, clapping your hands. But also: Getting down on it. Getting out of speeding tickets, maybe, if it’s really your day. And y’know, just doin your thing and hoping nobody tries to stifle it.
Breaks contained? YES. Yesyes, God yes. Too $hort, “Short But Funky.” Master Ace, “Postin’ High.”
Best YouTube comment: “Turn ’em ’round an’ kick ’em in the ass…..youngsters just don’t know!!” (re: old music being better than new music. And NO, I didn’t write it but it really sounds like something I would).
What pictures of myself posing in this outfit has to do with the record is, really, nothing and that’s that. But darling, life is performance. You are straight bugging if you pretend otherwise.
Other notable things about today:
– That Merle Haggard special was on PBS. What’s this about Merle being in the audience during Johnny Cash’s San Quentin shows (not the celebrated ones of ’69 – Merle was there for the 1958 shows) and why was I not alerted to this fact earlier. This is not as much a question as it is a statement–an indignant and annoyed statement. The LA Times writeup mentions that the special leaves out a lot about the “Bakersfield sound,” which my noble and goodhearted father tried to teach me about when I was a surly teenager and that I only appreciated years later. I could be kind of a jerk when I was 14. I returned to him solemn and humbled as a grown-up, my head hanging low. Anyway, electric guitar innovations were happening at the same time that the sound was emerging, thanks to Leo (Clarence Leonidas) Fender. Of course, this leads a girl to wonder who designed that curvy Fender logo that all the post-1966 models have. Have the report on my desk Monday morning. No excuses.
– Back in Black turned 30! I’ll give you black sensations up and down your spine. If you’re into evil you’re a friend of mine. (Also, if you enjoy going to get overpriced coffee and talking about Merle Haggard! Let’s hang out.)
– “Cassini Sees Moon Building Giant Snowballs in Saturn Ring.” – Science Daily. Mind blown in front of laptop today. Oh how I do love science. There’s no way I can try to rework this report into humanspeak, so a direct quote is in order:
“New images from Cassini show icy particles in Saturn’s F ring clumping into giant snowballs as the moon Prometheus makes multiple swings by the ring.”
This concept mixtape is coming. It’s coming, people. It’s called F Ring Clumping, but when it leaks a month early the kids commenting at NahRight get it wrong and think its name is Multiple Swings By the Ring. No matter. It’s hosted by Sun Ra and Captain Beefheart. Liner notes by Kool Keith (they have those for mixtapes now).
Wilson Pickett, my favorite Alabaman (it’ll make sense when you scroll down), with guitarist.
1. Woody Guthrie is the original Rakim in my heart, and today would’ve been his 98th birthday.
Since the foundation of male attractiveness is established for a girl during her childhood, Woody’s a big part of why I like boys who amplify their voices and pour their respective hearts out over beats. The rhymes from the microphone soloist Mr. Guthrie were revered in my household. So, yes, Woody was like Rakim to the little-girl version of me, only in my heart Woody’s mixed in a little with my dad for some nice Electra complex sprinkled on top. Years later, me listening to lots and lots of The Coup can be directly traced back to lines likeYou won’t never see an outlaw/Drive a family from their home.
2. “Every sin is the result of a collaboration.” – Stephen Crane
Rick Rawss and Gordon Gekko both know that greed is good and both of them think they’re doper than they actually are and neither of them will ever have the pleasure of seeing what color my undergarments are. I like Gordon better, though, because he doesn’t clog up my RSS feed with a new rap collaboration every 12 hours. Noted overweight Floridian Rick does, though. And I know it’s because he’s got good shit on a lot of dudes, since otherwise what the fuck is happening here. This Maybach Music takeover cannot be explained any other way.
I’m familiar with the concept of blackmail, which is different from extortion in that extortion involves the added distress of a crime being committed against you, and also one time Havoc said Extortion is the key I got the key for extortion. Havoc never wrote a rap about plain old blackmail, a bad thing that you can do to somebody which is slightly less sinister than extortion because it just involves psychological distress, like when a big fat MC with a weak voice gets superb talent to appear on his album or else he will reveal their secrets. Enter, sinful collaborations.
Jay did a song with RAWWWWSSSSS called “Free Mason,” which, in a super bitchy move, doesn’t even mention Behold a Pale Horse. The only redeeming part of it really is Jay’s line “I’m on my third 6 but a devil I’m not.” (Har, Sean.) Then Curren$y and Wiz did a song with him. Then Rae did. Then Erykah Badu agreed to direct a video for him. Then I opened up my eyes real wide and took a look around at this strange new world, like Alice in that Tom Petty video. I pray it’s all just a bad dream.
The Ross domination has been going on since right around “B.M.F.” started getting played on the radio. I have many problems with “B.M.F.,” the most obvious one being that it’s by a rapper who can’t rap but there’s also the fact that nothing in that chorus rhymes (Hoover/hallelujah, God/start) and that nobody actually says whippin’ work and anyway what does that even mean? Must be a regional thing, Florida and Alabama and such. Styles P also stipulates (as most of ’em have over the years in coke raps, so it’s not necessarily him I can blame) that there are 36 o’s in a kilogram. This is untrue, and he’s therefore training a whole bunch of suburban 16-year-olds through repeat listenings how to weigh it out sloppily. It’s just over 35 ounces (35 and a third). So your customer who buys in bulk is getting almost 20 grams for free and that’s just bad business practice, daddy. Sixteen ounces to a pound, twenty more to a ki. Nope. Unless you’re Mos Def. Then it just adds up, for some reason.
3. Paul Wall just made an awful song called “Live It” in which he holds a gun to Rae’s head and forces him to join in lyrically (blackmail tactics boosted from Ross, no doubt). It is a song I will not be linking to at this time due to the fact that I have good taste in music and cannot allow my stock to plummet. The only reason it gets a mention here is that Paul name checks Nickatina! “People in Texas have heard of Nickatina?” went the response in apt. 15. “I thought that was a regional thing.” The conclusion is either that Paul reads the Slap message boards or he used to get loose at Embarcadero and I just never knew. The 14-year-old in me is mad that he likes something only I’m allowed to like. If Mac Dre starts showing up in verses we’re going to need to have a little chat.
4. To Kill a Mockingbird turns 50 this week. I love smart dudes in glasses who know something about the legal system and who hold back a little emotionally. Sooooo basically, Atticus Finch, get at me.
(Introducing my newest tag, Fantasy Mixtape Titles. First up: Just One Kind of Folks, hosted by some great combo like, I don’t know, Wolfman Jack and Mister Cee. Also, Scarlett Jo in some of the skits in between, because I love her speaking voice.)
It was hard to choose just one string of words to pull from the text. I always liked this one, though: “She seemed glad to see me when I appeared in the kitchen, and by watching her I began to think there was some skill involved in being a girl.” You goddamn right, Jean Louise Finch. Every time I start to bitch about something, like if I have to go somewhere I don’t want to or if I want to go somewhere but I can’t get there, I try to remind myself I’m lucky not to be an 11-year-old girl during the Depression in Maycomb, Alabama, with a pretty great father but a father who has a deep kind of melancholy due to being a widower. That usually clears it right up, the bitching.
Wilson Pickett – “Mini Skirt Minnie.” That voice and those HUH!s come courtesy of Prattville, Alabama.
“You got all the men chasin after you, baby/you got the women cryin and carryin on,” AKA Logan goes to Trader Joe’s.
5. We are the ever-living ghost of what once was.
Cee-Lo covering Band of Horses is somehow able to supersede an unnecessarily glitchy beat and a tired old video concept (boring thin white people freaking out) mostly just by using his vocal chords, as they can do no wrong. I’d like this song in my record collection, please, even though I’d never listen to it because of the pain exacted in my heart region as a result of its lyrical content. I still can’t listen to side A of Cease to Begin unless I’m being cuddled and I’m confident in that moment that the cuddling will only stop when I want it to. Otherwise, I get pangs in my soft girly heart and I start to worry that the moment will end. I’ve only listened to this version below once and yeah I got misty a little and that’s about all I can take, as there is currently no one present to cuddle me.
Anyway, Cee-Lo’s voice is going into the Smithsonian someday for being a thing of impossible note-hitting smoky high-pitched beauty.
Rae, Capone, Sean P. (I stepped out of the hug so I could take the pic)
6. CNN are back in a not-so-big way, based on everything I’ve heard from The War Report 2. How sad, since Queens is otherwise doing so undeniably well these days!“With Me” is the best example of the album’s dreariness, as it features a plodding beat that makes me want to take a nap, and a corny feel-good chorus by Nas that is so highly feel-good that I believe Em was offered it for Recovery but turned it down because it was too saccharine. Capone slightly redeems the song with his line Frequently I like to Buck shot(s) like Evil Dee, because “frequently” is terribly underused in songs, because everything Black Moon related is valuable, and because ME TOO, CAPONE! I like to buck shots too, you dreamy son of a gun.
Let the record reflect that “T.O.N.Y.” is a shining, perfect example of a sing-along, feel-good chorus. Me and you/You got beef? I got beef. Solidarity, you guys! I don’t have beef with anyone, really, and even I sing along with that part. (I also love the old-timey use of “jakes” for “police officers.” It feels so ‘20s, like I just bobbed my hair and I’m giddy ’cause I just got the right to vote even though I have breasts)
7. Grease is, in fact, the word, as well as the time, the place, and the motion.
It is also the title of a joyful, bouncy song that a kind man on FM radio was playing during my extended time on the 101 the other day. The rule in determining whether a song is quality is that you picture Stevie Wonder either having composed it or singing it, and then you listen to it through that filter. Just ignore everything else. “Grease,” with that bassline, the way it’s structured melodically, that moment around 2:30 when the horns pass the baton to the drums, surely passes this test. I know it, ’cause I tried it, and wouldn’t you know, I solved my problems and I saw the light. I went home and I looked up its history, and I found out that Barry Gibb wrote it (and “Islands in the Stream” too!). And then, ’cause it was Saturday, I went to the roller rink.
8. “Madre mia.” – my newest paramour Sara, below, after her boyfriend Iker Casillas, the captain and goalie of the Spanish soccer team who has a classy Basque first name, cries and is overcome with emotion and kisses her. I keep watching this and automatically taking my dress off in a quick and obedient manner, a pure Pavlovian example of “Ladies like to be grabbed and kissed in a sudden and surprising way.” Genuine emotion has been getting ladies out of their clothes ever since I can remember and it’s not going anywhere. Live it, be it, achieve it.
9. Aubrey Graham won’t leave me be. We’re just two lost souls swimmin in a fish bowl, year after year. The latest in the story of us is that he showed up in one of my lady mags with no warning. (“Warning,” by the way, is a song by slain rapper Biggie Smalls that Drake hadn’t heard until last week since it was made in olden times, before ’06. Drake’s good now, though; Wayne played it for him and he thought it was uhmayyyyzing, so authentic, the way Biggie nailed in the narrative all that talk of clips and Rolexes)
It happened yesterday, in Elle mag (do not judge me, please), in my hands, on the couch in apt. 15. I read this quote from Drake, in response to being asked which rappers influence him:
THIS GUYYYYYY. Groan, cringe, groan, groan, CRINGE. When you give the same answer to a question about rap music that Bill O’Reilly and the nation’s grandmothers would give, you are performing at a sub-par level and you should stop it. He is an awful person. Drake is just so awful. I mean it. I wish bad things would happen to him. My mother would say Logan! That’s not very nice because she’s a real sweetheart, but she would also say There are far too many kids around today getting record deals because they are good-looking, know the right people, and do not challenge the dominant paradigm. And then my buddy Steve P. Morrissey would add Sing your life/Any fool can think of words that rhyme, which kind of sums up that record deal thing that my mom was just talking about.And then Affion Crockett would show up and give me exactly what I need.
10. Curren$y n’ Devin the Dude!, “Chilled Coughee.”It’s Devin the Dude; obviously this was going to show up on here. I don’t need to explain the hows and whys to you. Last week I did a post that was a link to a video taken on a cell phone of him reading the phone book. But for today, just this:
GPS loaded with the coordinates of this bitch crib to receive love and nourishment In the form of joints rolled, drinks poured Her in nothin but a robe, playin her role.
Aw, that’s all that men really want, isn’t it? It just hit me. Love and nourishment, and a girl to greet you at the door, clad in nothing but a robe. Even Rawss wants that, I bet. Even Rawss.
I know, right? You just look at this and right away you think “boning.”
11. Christina Hendricks discusses boning in the LA Times magazine; I feel good and validated inside now because like any foxy lady, I, of course, am well-versed in boning.
As a woman, I have to say the retro underwear on Mad Men actresses looks like utter torture. Am I wrong?
“No, you’re not wrong…(Those) undergarments really aren’t made for relaxing. (If) I have to wait a few hours for my next scene, I have to learn how to position myself, otherwise the boning presses into my guts.”
As shown in the uncomfortable bodice of my dress above (that’s boning, you guys; it keeps everything in place up top) there’s work involved in being a girl. The narrator of To Kill a Mockingbird taught me that. And boning jokes are classic, hilarious since since oh-nine.
Presenting A-Rod, my new Least Favorite Dominican (sorry, Juelz!).
“Rod,” by the way, is short for “Rodriguez.” And still, he has no opinion on xenophobic, illegal policies that affect people who look just like him. And so it was said, so it shall be done: 2010’s Most Superior Bitch Move, decided and awarded, swiftly and officially, to Alex, based on the 2-word snippet above. The year’s only halfway through, and he had to go up against LeBron’s self-fellating TV hour, and still–A-Rod came out on top! That’s some real skill.
Seu Jorge – “Queen Bitch.” My heart’s in the basement/My weekend’s at an all-time low, Bowie said. This song’s about A-Rod, you see. ‘Cause it’s about a bitch.