rap

TRASHY THURSDAY IS BACK! – The Big Tymers

WHAT’S UP FRESH? IT’S OUR TURN BABY!

Trashy Thursday is back, snitches! It’s been far too long since the dulcet tones of hoodboogers have populated this blog.  But how exactly do we come back??

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Now by the time we were blessed with this duo, Cash Money has been around for a while. But like a bat out of hell, Still Fly came through and stormed the charts gaining the duo MTV-Level fame with the catchy hook and hilarious subject matter.  So let’s take a step back and just deep dive in the anthems.

This Is How We Do is perfect.  Mannie Fresh truly was the best part of Cash Money.  His productions are why so many of their jams were so catchy.  This song has his fingerprints all over it.  Baby might as well be a feature rapper in it.

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Now Stun’n is actually their first single as a duo.

The sheer difference between the sound here between the first two songs we listened to is a clear example of late 90’s Dirty South rap and the early 2000’s rap that was played on the top 40 stations. It’s not just the money difference.  It’s a range in style and polish. It’s in the griminess of Stun’n juxtaposed with the slickness and pleasant beats of This Is How We Do.  But you can go to Complex to get a true historical point-of-view on rap and hip hop.

I.

FUCK.

THESE.

HOES.

AFTER.

OUR.

SHOOOOOOW!

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Listen, I just had a pure dance break to this.  Also, how many people punched themselves in the face getting their roll on?  I was actually driving home to NC from Boston for my vacation when this song came on the radio.  I, of course, started to jam and dance.  Luckily, there was no damage to my car or the Chikfila drive-thru.

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Let’s go back to an earlier jam.

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EVERYTHING I TELL YOU! If you aren’t pursing your lips and shoulder bopping, you’re not listening to it correctly.

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YES YES YES YES YES! The Cribs parody. The cornrows.

So this is my absolute favorite Big Tymers song of all time.  OF ALL TIME!!! It just makes me smile so hard.  The special effects!

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Story Time! So young Trash actually attended a Big Tymers concert back in the day.  It was pretty much the greatest thing to ever happen. During Oh Yeah!, there was a giant diamond set piece.  During the breakdown, the top opened and what had to be 100 hoochies dressed in metallic swimwear poured out to dance around the stage for the next few songs.  It was SO SO SO GOOD!!!! Y’all the early 2000’s were a glorious time.  I only paid $5 for my ticket.

To close this out, turn your hymnals to Page 55, Bling Bling.

I know I left out some brilliant tracks. 10 Wayz and Fuck You are other favorites.  What are yours? Share your favorite memories of Baby and Mannie Fresh.

Black People Are Magic

Hey y’all!

Last night, I went out to Cascade Skating Rink (you saw it in ATL, if you didn’t know it as a cultural landmark) to celebrate a great friend’s birthday.

Something about being in the skating rink watching people just show off how fly they are, hang with their friends, laugh and dance with their partners filled my heart with pride. The varying styles for voluminous Afros to wet and wavy weaves. The Brooks Brothers brothers to the Adidas track suits. There was this expansive representation of Blackness all on the floor skating to Barry White or Migos or Junior M.A.F.I.A. or Frankie Beverly. It was breathtaking.

One of the greatest things about aging has been my increased appreciation of Blackness in every aspect. My family, as wonderful as they are, has always played by the rules of respectability which guided a lot of my younger thoughts. I was prone to making grand statements about how this or that would set back the race. But as I’ve matured, I learned to see the uniqueness of my people and to treasure who we are and who I am.

Things like skating rinks and barber shops were cultural and social centers in the days of segregation. The distinct taste of the food we make and the techniques we use are products of perseverance and poverty. The way we dress, the way we move, and the way we express ourselves delights me. It’s distinctive.

That’s what makes our culture so appealing. We thrive in adversity. We celebrate when there is little reason to do so. We live our lives with a freedom that should be celebrated, not stifled.

In this time where we have to take to the streets just to ask for basic human rights and justice, I’m going to continue to champion Blackness in all of its forms. They may not all apply to me but I refuse to cherry pick which aspects I deem “acceptable” for people and a system that doesn’t give a fuck about us.

Celebrity Jury: Nicki Minaj

You even have a day that just feels like a Monday?

garfield

But let’s chat.  As you all may remember, when the blog first started, we would take a look at some celebrities and judge them.  You know like these:

Justin Timberlake
Justin Bieber
Ray J
Bow Wow Shad Moss D-Pimpin

Well since we haven’t had a lady be judged, it’s time to rectify that.  Step on down Nicki!

tre

 

Oh…that’s not you. Hi Tré!

actually nicki

 

There you are!  Let’s get this show on the road.

Pro: Nicki is a capable rapper.

Let’s flashback to 2009, when Nicki burst on the scene with a bunch of star-making features.  I remember thinking that she was nothing special.  Clever, but not that interesting.  This was the first verse that really made me sit up and take notice from a signed artist standpoint (more on the mixtapes later).

This is FANTASTIC.  Witty, interesting, lyrically sound.  There’s not a forced rhyme in the entire verse.  Effective use of her accents.  There is not a single flaw here.  It’s the best part of the song.

But what it showed me was that I had been too harsh in my initial judgment.  I may not have been a huge fan, but the lady can rap and rap well.

Con: These singles.

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Short Version: I don’t like these songs.

Long Version: These songs aren’t interesting.  Nicki doesn’t have a terrible singing voice, but it’s not one that we need to hear when she’s capable of Monster style verses.  The rapping here defaults to L’il Wayne style broken similes and metaphors that feel lazy to me.  I just don’t get excited about Nicki Minaj music 90% of the time.  I feel like I’m going to get something dull and plodding (Your Love, Pills and Potions) or something zany yet bland (Starships, Super Bass).

Pro: Nicki’s Makeunder

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For the first few years, Nicki ran around looking a clown’s ass and we just let it happen.  Her wigs were always bright and colorful but sat too low on her forehead or were plagued by tragic wig glue.  Her make-up…was frightening.  In the wake of Lady Gaga’s “style,” Nicki’s felt try-hard and uninspiring.  no

Like this?  This is dumb.  This isn’t interesting.  There is no message.  It’s just stupid.

However in 2013, Nicki Minaj started looking like a human and dressing in a more toned-down manner.  I hate to seem like I’m discouraging her creativity, but she looks amazing.

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Like look at this person.  Look at this woman.  How stunning is she?

Not only did it let us see what she looks like, but it had the effect of pressing “Reset” for those of us who were non-fans and others who loved mixtape Nicki.  It’s one of the most effective image makeovers in history.  I’m reminded of Dorothy Dandridge.  Some of you may or may not know, but Dorothy Dandridge had a very sweet and “apple pie” appeal when she first broke in Hollywood with the Nicolas Brothers.

She’s obviously a dynamic performer and talent, but she’s miles away from becoming Carmen Jones.

SO. HOT. RIGHT. NOW.  She’s like sex personified in the role.  It was this role that would infuse her nightclub acts with sensuality and become her lasting image rather than her earlier roles.

It’s my hope that this is the route Nicki is taking.  I’m open to liking her and her music more now because I think she looks amazing.  Had she started out this way, I would think that she had nothing more to offer, but now I feel like she deserves another shot, if that makes sense.

Con: Petty Betty is Petty.

Let’s flashback to the BET Awards.  I said this,

But back to Nicki coming for Iggy’s writing credits and authenticity.  Girl. Good. Bye. I don’t say that because I’m some huge Iggy fan or anything.  But to come for someone who is having career success when you’ve just beaten her for an award is petty.  It doesn’t make you look good.  It doesn’t speak well for your belief in YOUR career.  And to have Nicki Minaj come for anyone on the grounds of authenticity when she has run around for a good 5 years wearing multi-colored quick weaves, speaking in tragic accents, and calling herself a Barbie just reeks of a lack of self-awareness.  Writing all of those lyrics gave us Stupid Hoe and Twinkle Twinkle Little Star.  So good for you?

And you know, I stand by this.  Most of Nicki’s first two years were plagued with dumb drama with L’il Kim over “not paying enough homage.”  It was petty and stupid then.  And Nicki’s reacting to Iggy’s success now is petty and stupid.  Nicki’s lane is secure and clear, despite any misgivings I may have about her.  Iggy being a part of two great summer songs has nothing to do with her.  She may not be a fan but just relax and know that you are and can do better.  People who are comfortable in their position don’t worry about what others are doing.

Pro: Lookin’ Ass N****

Yes.  Just yes.

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Con: Stupid Hoe

Now, I had to break this out separately.  What. The. Fuck.

Who approved this?

Who thought this would be a hit?

This is awful.

This is Nicki at her most indulgent and terrible.  Anybody who did not see it for her can point to this song & video and prove their point.

Pro: Nicki supports feminism.

Or at the very least, pays lip service to it.  I’m a big supporter of women standing up for themselves and their causes.  And I appreciate that Nicki does the same in her way.  Her response to Loyal at Super Jam was great.

And while I don’t care for the Anaconda cover, I don’t feel like there’s any reason for the uproar.  It’s just her ass cheeks.  This is Nicki Minaj we’re talking about. Her ass is her brand.

Con: Defensive, thy name is Onika.

Back to the point, I was making about the Anaconda cover and uproar.  Nicki went on a rant with images of other non-Black women with their booty butt cheeks out or half-dressed when people critiqued the cover.  While I agree that there is nothing particularly wrong with the cover, I feel like this is an Azealia Banks move.  It’s not that Nicki shouldn’t respond or that she can’t respond.  It’s that instead of managing her career in a way that an artist of her stature can, she’s still acting like a struggling artist whose record sales live and die by Twitter.

She’s more than that and I think that there’s two ways to respond.  Get you an interview with Jimmy Fallon or Chelsea Handler and state your case.  Or release a freestyle called “Unbothered” with several pictures of your ass in all of it’s glory.

Duh…

Going back a little bit, remember her “feud” with Mariah Carey?  Mariah Carey is a rude and shady bitch, but losing your cool isn’t how you fight someone operating at that level of mastery.  You do some digging

Pro: Parodies & Sophia Grace/Rosie

Without Nicki, these things wouldn’t be here to tickle me.

Those little girls are mega adorable.

 

Con: Her Live Performances Leave Much To Be Desired

 

I’ve said a couple of times that Pills And Potions is a boring song that really had no business coming out for the summer.  But the decision was made and Nicki performed it at the BET Awards with that cheap bunny costume, giant mushroom prop and one contemporary dancer.  It’s interesting that she pulled from Alice in Wonderland given Lewis Carroll’s thinly veiled drug references in the original, but there’s always something lacking in the execution.

I’ve never seen a Nicki performance that was “creative” that didn’t come across as juvenile.  To me, it feels like she has the idea first and does not think anything through until the day of the performance.  I’ve seen stans make the argument that she majored in Theatre in high school and that’s what I get from these performances.  High school spring musical.  At a struggling high school.

I’ve just sat through a few performances and I’m still bored.  It’s all lackluster booty popping (for the rap songs) or forced creativity.  Thanks but no thanks.

Pro: She gave Cassie a job!

You all know how I feel about the Original Queen of Music.

Overall: Meh…

You know, I was making this list and I was pretty sure that it would come out as a positive for Nicki.  While I can’t say I’m a huge fan or anything, I really do think there is something to be said for her career.  It had been years since we had any female rappers doing anything of note.  Remy Ma has the talent and flow, but went to jail.  Shawnna is also a great rapper, but her own singles never had much commercial appeal outside of hoodrat clubs and college parties.  Nicki was able to rise to the top with a slew of memorable verses and catchy songs.  She’s managed to keep control of her career in some ways and redirect it away from a sinking ship.  She’s got talent and spark.

But I’m still not convinced.  I’m just not moved by her own material enough to really be on her team.  For every triumph, there’s a complete flop.  For ever accurate point made, there’s something petty and insecure the next day.

I would like to see Nicki find a way to just truly own her star image and sound.  I think once she stops trying to “make hits” and relies on what got her signed in the first place, she’ll be golden.

But until then…

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What are your thoughts?  Let me know in the comments or over the twitter machine.

 

 

King of Music: J-Kwon

It’s Friday, Friday!

And Trash is finally ready to write a post.  Now we’ve crown a few queens of music.  Queen Cassie and Queen Lumidee.  But you know it’s time to pay homage to a King of music.  But who holds their own against iconic bops like Me And U and Uh Ooh.

jkwon

Teen drinking is very bad.  YO, I GOT A FAKE ID, THOUGH!

Bow down, bishes, bow bow down BISHES!!!!

Okay, let’s back up.  J-Kwon came out my senior year of high school and seemed to be a response to the Nelly and Chingy wave of St. Louis based hip hop that had came to dominate the charts.  Now for you all who may not remember, the early to mid-2000’s saw rap music take over the pop charts in a huge way.  It was an amazing time that led to the world’s greatest one hit wonders.  Let’s two step and talk about Tipsy and why it is flawless.

The first verse starts with J-Kwon counting and talking about how great the party is.  The girl is feeling his steez, but she got a bad attitude.  You don’t get none.  The counting structure is clever and you can’t take it. We are jamming obviously because the song snatches wigs. To be honest, I’m struggling to write this post because I’m doing the Chickenhead around my apartment and rapping along.

chickenhead

I don’t know the song just does things to me.  I smile every single time I hear it.  Something about J-Kwon’s crooked smile and centipede cornrows gets me going.  The beat is just random noises.  It’s amazing.  I think the appeal of the song is that it’s not complicated.  It’s a party song about getting drunk and the things that happen at hoodrat house parties.  It doesn’t try to be more than it is and it’s great fun.  Also, J-Kwon’s mush mouth is hilarious.

And Billboard thought so too.  Tipsy went to #7 on the Pop charts and was the #11 song of the whole damn year.  Stay mad haters!

 

Although Wikipedia is being super shady as I do my research, calling this song a “novelty” single.

So J-Kwon achieved international success and had made mince meat of your favorite rappers.  What happened next?

It’s the new improved Hood Hop!

So how do you follow up an anthem about underaged drinking?  A song about the streets with a fun dance attached!  Obviously.

Honestly, the most notable thing about this video is watching J-Kwon step touch all through the video.  At least, his cornrows had hang time.  Hood Hop didn’t quite light up the charts but don’t act like you don’t remember it!

Ooh, I like when he randomly makes letters of a word in the specific line he’s rapping.

And that was that. Although Wikipedia tells me that there were more singles.  Let’s listen to one!

Oh wait! I remember this song!  See, I was being rude.  You and Me was a cute little song.  Unfortunately, the best summer love song that is a rap/sung collaboration was L’il Flip’s Sunshine.  Sorry bout it.

Now as far as I remember, that was the end of his career but there are at least 3 more J-Kwon’s albums to be explored.  I don’t know if I’m quite ready to explore those depths. Even Trash has his limits, yall.

chloe

But because I don’t want you all miss out the rest of the King’s discography, here it is.

Like Dis featuring Andy Milonakis

Take it to the flo, Andy! Take it to the hood, Kwon!

A guest verse on the Fresh Azimiz Remix???

But I don’t see him in the video though.  I have questions.

And the Louie Bounce aka I Smacked Nikki!!!!!

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Wait!  Wait!  This is amazing.

YAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAASS!

Listen, like I said about Lumidee. There are some careers that could only have happened and been sustained during the early 2000’s.  And just as the curse got Chingy, J-Kwon’s brand of rapping wasn’t going to hold up.  We never took him seriously as a rapper and when pushed to try to keep up with the trends, we got I Smacked Nikki.  And he didn’t even have his looks to fall back on.

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Eek.  But for one glorious moment, we had Tipsy and J-Kwon was on top of the world.  And that’s why he is a King of Music.

Trashy Thursday: Mexican Rappers

What time is it? It’s Trashy Time!

What time is it? Trashy Thursday time!

So we’ve been neglecting that some of the greatest and most hilarious hoodrat tunes come from our friends down south!  I have to rectify this as we can not live in a world where you are not leaning like a cholo.

1) Lean Like  A Cholo – Down AKA Kilo

Elbows up, side to side!

Now this song was a hit for several reasons.  We were all about leaning in the last decade.  We leaned back and we leaned and rocked with it.  Down AKA Kilo capitalized on that trend with his iconic bop.  He gives you the dance moves, reminds of you Big Pun if you squint and don’t listen to his rapping.  He is pretty much perfect.

2) Cyclone – Baby Bash

Now, who remembers the Baby and the Bash??  His first hit was “Suga Suga” but I absolutely hate that song with all that is within me.  Pretty much any song with him and Frankie J was a flop for me.  But then he hooked up with human voicebox T-Pain and created something that we can all bodyroll to!

3) Bring Out The Freak In You – L’il Rob

Another song that I found via B.Scott back in the days where he was still battling with his Ethiopian neighbors.  I love this song. It’s complete filth and makes no bones about it.  L’il Rob is trying to get it in and we just have to deal!  He’s probably my favorite of all the rappers on this list.  He even has a pleasant love song to counteract the trashy goodness of this one.

4) I’m In Love With Your Sister – Chingo Bling

Yaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaass!!! While this is a parody of I’m In Love With A Stripper by the legendary T-Pain, it still stands as a hilarious and trashy piece of music.

5) Bass Down Low – Dev

YES! So I didn’t know Dev was Mexican, but now that I do, it’s time to pay homage.  I remember jamming to Booty Bounce while Dev stood around in an array of hideous outfits.  I remember being pissed that “Like A G6” was a hit because I liked the original song better.

But this is my jiggety jam!  It’s such a simple, dumb song, but I can’t resist bopping to it.

So who are some of your favorite Mexican or Mexican-American rappers?? Did I miss any iconic bops?  Let us know in the comments!

Trashy Thursday: Celebrating Tip Harris

It’s my Friday, y’all!

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But let’s get down to business.  Today we celebrate the musical contributions of T.I., winner of the best rapper smile ever award.

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Yes.  But T.I. has been behind many of my favorite bops so let’s pay tribute to him.

Get Loose

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Flawless.

Let’s Get Away

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What You Know

yankin bop

You Don’t Know Me

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24’s

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Ball

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What are your favorite T.I. songs?  I know I missed some and left some key ones off.  Let’s celebrate!

Celebrity Jury: Bow Wow

What’s up, what’s happening??

Now it’s been a while since we have had a court session.  You can catch up here, here, and here! Let’s talk about Shad Moss.  L’il Bow Wow.  Mr. 106 & Park!

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Get into those luxurious locks!  Let’s get started.

Fact: Bow Wow has some jams.

Yaaaaaaaaaaaaaaass!

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Don’t be mad!

Fact: This Bow Wow and Omarion thing happened…

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You know how Watch The Throne was like super successful?  This was the Dollar General version of that.  And it was trash.  The songs were trash.  The only quality thing we got from this was Bow Wow’s sass.

“We gone own the forff quarter!
And if you don’t jump on the bandwagon now…”

::neck roll:: ::finger wave::

This song was trash.  Even if you liked it, you were wrong.

Fact: Bow Wow is not ugly.

Short, yes.  Ugly, no.

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Fact: Remember him dating Ciara??

Ciara, girl those notes!

Fact: You didn’t think I forgot Marco Polo, did you????

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Fact: Roll Bounce is the worst.

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Nope.  Not even a little.  This movie was terrible in every way.

Fact: Bow Wow is realistic.

Currently, Bow Wow is a host on 106 & Park.  This was a show where he dominated the countdowns and was a featured guest at one point.  I remember people clowning him for taking the gig as it was acceptance that he was no longer famous anymore.  I might have even done it.

But let’s get real, times are hard for those stars who came up in the early 2000’s.  It was a different time and sound that is now considered dated by most. So instead of going hungry, Shad took a job that pays consistently and keeps him employed.  He’s not out here scooting across Queen Latifah’s floor or releasing videos with the World Star Hip Hop tag.

So I’m not going to dis finding a way to stay paid without resorting to super flop ass records.

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Fact: Azimiz???

Fact: Bow Wow led to the best Catfish episode ever.

D-Pimpin: My name is Bow Wow.

    Nev: Your name is not Bow Wow.  What’s your name.

D-Pimpin: Shad Moss.

Did you all watch this episode?  It was incredible.  Part-time model/McDonald’s cashier thinks that Bow Wow is in love with her after a Facebook message response.  She also receives $10,000 which is how she knows it’s real.

D-Pimpin is a struggle rapper/mooch who gets money from her “mixtape” and uses a lambskin dildo to trick unsuspecting straight women.

It is all so AMAZING!

Verdict: Why not?

You know, I went into this thinking that the Bow Wow verdict would be a huge no, but honestly, I like Bow Wow.

Sure he hasn’t had any chart success recently, but he’s managed to get himself attached to the Fast & Furious franchise, keep a steady pay check, and he has some tunes that I jam to.  He hit some financial troubles but so did everyone associated with Jermaine Dupri.  Even Jermaine Dupri.  I just hope Dem Franchise Boyz are set.

So you know, team Bow Wow.  Let’s end with another sassy video clip from the Bow Wow/Omarion days.

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