From ‘Cole: Week Five Response

This one was a doozie just because I didn’t have much to work with. My favorite story? I would have to say it is the one where a Community-college basketball team dropout from Houston moves to L.A. and became such an icon that his likeness is the villain/hero in a Harmony Korine film portrayed by none other than Oscar-nominated James Franco.

RiFF & James Franco

But I digress.

It’s all one and the same–it’s all his story, which is pretty much what hip hop is about. I think that’s RiFF’s appeal– he takes it back to the roots of telling his geniune story to an audience that is willing to listen to him speak.

But if I had to choose one, it’d be “Emerald green chain smells like brussels sprouts.”
Something about that line brings together his origins–it gives us more insight into his Country roots, while also shedding light on his new lavish lifestyle. I mean, emeralds and brussels sprouts is such a powerful image–the homely and the divine. It’s kind of like putting RiFF RAFF into a room of Versace models (which, I’m aware, has been done and done.)

Also, I think it’s a possible nod to green, which is a nod to bud, because brussels sprouts are all buds, no stems. It’s an interesting choice–other than the rhyme, which works, I think it was a conscious choice to point us toward weed, a very clever detail in the midst of a lot of really surface comparisons.

RiFF RAFF

But none of it feels conscious, it all feels very stream of consciousness to me, which makes him all the more fascinating. It’s like monkeys in a room full of typewriters–eventually something ingenious comes out. It’s like if he keeps spitting enough crazy unalike things he’ll find some great analogies. I appreciate the organic nature of it. In a world of very, very calculated rhymes he’s doing something different.

I don’t know if that was necessarily what you were going for. If it wasn’t, help a sister out. I DO have to say that he is a character. I think it’s freaking FAScinating that he’s the inspiration for a character in a Harmony Korine movie–you know that shit gets real.

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