From ‘Cole: A Response to Week Two’s Response

SO glad you liked it dude. One of the classics.
If you want to continue your Pac education, this was a close second:

You might remember a remake of Hail Mary a while back, it was AWESOME (Dre, Eminem, etc. if I remember), but still, nothing like the original.

And, if you’ve not heard much Common, this is a more blatant example of an uncertain metaphor:

(I think he ruins it by saying H.E.R.= Hip Hop, but it’s really debatable.)

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From Sky: A Response to Week Two’s Response

So glad that you liked Bronsilino! Dude is awesome. His music and his persona are both something I really relate with. Why? Who knows. Maybe it’s that he’s a 300+ pound chef who loves weed and rap. But again, who knows. Here are some other tracks from him. The first one was many people’s video of the year (yes that’s a RiFF RAFF cameo), the following two are both songs I debated on choosing for this week, and the last one is just a personal favorite. I feel you’ll enjoy the production on all of them!

I really like your ideas on the production of Party Supplies. I feel he’s a truly great producer and always look forward to new stuff from him. Oh, and Nicole? You do not HAVE to talk specifically about the rapper. Talk about whatever it is you want to talk about. Really. I enjoy reading your ideas, be it on the production or the lyricism, what ever. It’s all good in the hood.

For me, Pepe Lopez, the second track on that list above is my favorite. Great sampling of Tequila on that one. You might have also noticed him on Chance’s ‘NaNa’, which was also dope.

I have two in mind for next week. Also, I have debated some darker tracks, so if I do decided to present those you’ll have a choice as to whether or not you’re in the mood. There are tracks and artists I want to introduce you to that I honestly don’t think you’ll like, so have no fear about straight up telling me so. I think we’re passed the bs. One thing I love about r/HHH is that it has introduced me to such a wide spectrum of hip hop. Some of it is great, other is shit, and others are beyond simple enjoyment (think the movie Requiem For A Dream, nobody enjoyed that film).

Anyhow, until next week.

The BasedGod loves you and hopes your family is well.

-S

From ‘Cole: Week Two Response

I KNOW I’m supposed to talk about Action Bronson. And believe me, there’s lots to say about the “white man excelling at a white sport” but…I just HAVE to make most of this week about Party Supplies.

Party Supplies

The sampling on this track is BRILLIANT. Ugh. The choices were best because a) the 80’s were just long enough ago that the samples can seem fresh and new to a host of listeners, although some kids may have a sense of John Mellencamp from Jessica Simpson when she used that sample from “Jack and Diane.”

(Not NEARLY as successfully, I might add.) And b) the frequency of the sample changes creates a sense of constant movement and change which is, of course, such a huge part of our zeitgeist.

Very few things stay the same. I think that’s what Party Supplies is trying to say in this track–things seem like they change all the time. But the use of 80’s samples makes a point of the opposite– the same things come back time after time. The more things change, the more they stay the same.

The sample choices were interesting to me…I did some research to see if there was anything in common with them. “Jack & Diane” was Mellencamp’s most celebrated single, and was a hit in 1982, “Sussudio” and “Another Day in Paradise” were both Phil Collins, and were released in 1985 and 89, respectively. There’s seriously nothing that they have in common other than that they are all number one 80s singles.

I think that doesn’t take away from the song. I think that’s beautifully post-post-modern. Sometimes the only thing that things have in common is the time they are in– that, and that they are unrelated.
But I also think since they’re all number ones makes Action Bronson seem like even more of a badass because he has an amalgam of #1’s so he can become #1.

On to the rap.
The thing that stuck out to me most was when Action pauses and lets Phil Collins take over the track–so brilliant. It’s almost interactive in a sense– he’s not just letting the beat and the melody stay in the background, but brings it to the foreground and blends it with his rhyme, which I’ve only heard once before, done by K Dot. And you KNOW that comparison is a good thing.

Bronson

Bronson himself is fun, his flow is steady, but I feel like his lyrics could use more substance. But I know that the track isn’t necessarily about the message. In fact, the medium is the message.

Good choice Sky. See you next week!

From Sky: Week Two Response

Well, well, well…. Tupac, huh?

I have to start off with saying that I was aware of Jay’s ”03 Bonnie and Clyde’, and I was ware the hook came from Tupac, but I had never really listened to the Tupac track…. or rather should I say, Makaveli track.

Tupac

When I saw the subject of your email and knew it was going to be Tupac, I have to admit, this was not the track I anticipated. I was thinking it would have been ‘Me Against the World’ or ‘Hit ’em Up’, but not ‘Me and My Girlfriend’. I totally see why you chose it now, however. The first listen fell kind of flat for me. I found myself listening for metaphors, but didn’t find myself finding one I truly enjoyed, or to be honest, find any whatsoever. I struggled to really pull something out, thus affirming my reasoning for never listing to too much Tupac. Then it clicked. It was listen two, I believe, where I started to realize that although he was spitting about a female, he was also equating it to something else. I first thought it might be “the thug life” (I feel like I have to put that in quotes because I’m too white) or something along those lines. It was a few more listens before I truly realized that he is actually not spitting about a female but rather his gun. Duh. Then I realized the metaphors were SOOOO abundant! There were literally in every line. Every line.

When it comes to choosing a favorite metaphor, I have to say that it’s a tie. There are two that I truly love. The first one comes at the beginning of the second verse. “I was too immature to understand your ways, inexperienced back in the days / Caused so many arguments and strays”. Now, if one wasn’t aware that he was actually spitting about a firearm, this wouldn’t be a metaphor at all. It was one word that really struck me in this line on my first listen, and that was, of course, ‘strays’. Had he been simply discussing some girl it would refer to breakups or breaks in their relationships. Since he is in fact rapping about a gun, strays refers to stray bullets. The lack of accuracy. When he was just a youngin he wasn’t accurate with his shooting, he was ‘inexperienced’. His gun was pulled out at disagreements due to his immaturity. Since, Pac has learned the ways of the gun and has become a deadly, spot on shot. I dig this.

The other line that really struck a cord with me has to be a line he drops at the end of the third verse: “After a hit you break apart, then back to one piece.” Once I realized he was taking about his gun, I heard this line and instantly thought of a Sniper movie. After an assassination the sniper would quickly dismantle his rifle and stow it away. When it came time for the next ‘hit’, the rifle would be reassembled and used again. In terms of the track being about some girl, the line would refer to something along the lines of: after a breakup or a fight (a hit), the girl’s heart would break, but time heals all, and eventually her broken heart would mend and she’d be ready to get back out there. That’s not the type of hit Tupac is referring to. He’s referring to a hit, as in a killing. Like the sniper in a film about snipers, Pac dismantles his gun after a hit. Later, because there’s never only one hit, he would put the gun back together and it’d be ready for another.

There is definitely some respect for Pac gained here. I decided to go back and listen to Hov’s ”03 Bonnie and Clyde’ and I find it interesting that Jay is actually spitting about a girl (Beyonce) and not a gun as Pac did. I think this shows just how crafty Pac was with his words. I guess there really is a reason why Pac is at the top of MC lists.

Solid pick ‘cole.

-S

From Sky: Week Two – A Contemporary Week

First off, I have to say that I’m really glad you liked Chance. He’s really come on big this year. I hope to hear a lot more from him and I look forward to an album he’ll put out in the future. I have provided some additional Chance tracks, features mostly, that I really like and that you would’ve had to search out. Enjoy them.

Now since that is out of the way, let’s move on to week two.

This next artist was featured in XXL’s 2013 Freshman Class. This chef turned rapper has a certain way with words that’ll make you hungry. Not only does he spit extravagant food references, he combines them with 1970’s sports references a SportsCenter announcer would cum over. This is off of his fifth mixtape, his first of 2013, and a sequel to a 2012 tape. There’s something about him, mostly his lyricism that’s hard to not find appealing. There were three songs that I was trying to pick from off of this mixtape, a mixtape which includes features from Ab-Soul, Mac Miller and even Bam Bam himself; a mixtape that includes an Applebee’s ad and the best sample of ‘Tequila!’ you’ll ever hear. The tape has been ranked on numerous best-of lists of the year, including SPIN, Rolling Stone and Complex.

Either way, without any further ado…

Winning.

-S

p.s. Sometimes I won’t necessarily include a question to ask you about the track, as I like to see what you come up with. It’s fascinating…. butttttt, if you want a couple here they are: What’s up with all the samples? Why the 1980s? How does the title of the track play into the lyrics?

From ‘Cole: Week Two – Week 2Pac

(If you’re already familiar with this track, let me know.)

The fact that you’re not well acquainted with Pac is shameful, especially since you read my blog and I like to think my blog is pretty informative. But to have such a gap in your knowledge is unacceptable in my book. So, this week,
is Pac week.

If I ask you a question in particular, it will be too obvious where the focus lies, so this week I just want to ask you to write me about your favorite metaphor in this song.

And, go.