Beyonce’s “I woke up like this, flawless” will forever be my self-love mantra, but Kendrick Lamar’s new single “I” is a worthy addition to the list of awesome personal empowerment anthems. Lamar, who was robbbbbbbbed of the Best Rap Album award at the Grammys, finally dropped the song today — a precursor to the release of his hugely anticipated sophomore album, due later this year — and damn will it have you bopping your head and shaking your booty. Featuring a sample from the Isley Brothers’ “That Lady” — Buzzfeed notes that the ’60s band was also sampled on rap classic like Ice Cube’s “It Was A Good Day” and Biggie’s “Big Poppa” — “i” is fun and joyful, while still full of Kendrick’s conscious lyricism and distinctive flow: Keep reading »
Is it fair to say that Nicki Minaj’s “Anaconda” is the female counterpoint to Sir Mix-A-Lot’s “Baby Got Back”? The song samples heavily from the original track, while the video released this morning features scenes that reference Mix-A-Lot’s original lyrics, like Nicki dressed like ’80s workout-era Jane Fonda. Plus, there are more (jiggly, bouncing) round things in your face than I can actually count. Maybe there’s more to parse here, but well, I’m sprung.
Last week, Nicki Minaj released the artwork for her new single “Anaconda,” featuring the rapper in a squat position with her large posterior aimed directly at viewers. The image was met with mostly support from fans and critics but some questioned if the image was “too racy.” In response to those criticisms, Minaj tweeted several Sports Illustrated photos with White swimsuit models in similar poses and the message “angelic” and “acceptable,” hinting at society’s racial bias that does not treat Black bodies with the same respect as White ones — a statement that was met with more controversy. Keep reading »
Hip-hop is probably my favorite genre of music, but goddamn, sometimes the lyrics can go and ruin a perfectly great song. Such is the case with T.I.’s collaboration with Iggy Azalea, “No Mediocre,” which musically is cool and catchy and would be super fun to dance to — if not for the lyrics being painfully sexist from start to finish. The song is all about how T.I. doesn’t want to get with any women he deems “mediocre,” specifically women who don’t do their hair, have “bush” (“I should see nothing but pussy when I look down there”), wear tennis shoes instead of heels, and don’t have pretty faces and a “fat ass.” In other words, the song is about how mediocre and unworthy the vast majority of women in the world are, according to T.I. Keep reading »
I’ve always been a little meh on Nicki Minaj, but today the rapper dropped a ballad that is knocking my socks off. “Pills N Potion” is an uplifting, but not-even-remotely cheesy love song directed at her haters and will be featured on Nicki’s upcoming album The Pink Print. “Swearin’ on the Bible that they love you but they’re no different from all your rivals / but I don’t wish death on ‘em, I just reflect on ‘em,” Minaj raps on the pared-down track, giving fans a taste of what they can expect from her next effort. I LOVE it. Listen below! [Rolling Stone]
How did Eminem spend Mother’s Day? By releasing a music video for yet another song all about his relationship with his mother, Debbie Mathers. But unlike songs past, which focused on a mutual addiction to Valium (“My Mom”) or being a “victim of Munchhausen’s Syndrome” (“Cleaning Out My Closet”), “Headlights” is actually an apology. Directed by Spike Lee and shot in the rapper’s native “Detroit,” the video shows Eminem flipping through childhood photo albums and depicts a tearful reunion scene, a reference to the mother and son’s longtime estrangement. A sample of the lyrics: “Cause, now I know it’s not your fault and I’m not making jokes / That song I’ll no longer play at shows and I cringe every time it’s on the radio.” Aww, here’s hoping these two finally reconcile … and that an apology to Eminem’s ex, Kim Mathers, is next. [Consequence of Sound]