Song Lyric Saturday with N.W.A.

I like to showcase a variety of music on my Saturday posts, and this week’s pick comes along with a movie.

Have you seen “Straight Outta Compton”? I saw it the night it came out and have the DVD. I call it an African-American history class with comedy and drama thrown in. I loved it. The movie shows the struggle of the group members as they are starting out in Compton, California and grow into and out of the group. Ice Cube’s son, O’Shea Jackson, Jr. is really nice to look at. I was really upset that the movie didn’t win a single Emmy (feel free to fact check me on that).

The guys in N.W.A. grew up in Compton, a really low-income area in California. It was known in the 80s for drug dealing and gangs. The songs that (mainly) Ice Cube wrote were about what he saw going on around him- racial profiling, shootings, and so on. They didn’t live the easiest lives. He was still in high school when writing some of the earlier songs. The group later broke up (as you can see in the movie- no spoilers) and Ice Cube wrote the best diss track ever, “No Vaseline” as a result. Even though the group broke up, they inspired a whole generation of rappers.

NWA pic

It’s pretty difficult to really do a lyric analysis on this group, because it’s hardcore rap. There’s a lot of cursing involved, and even though I have a really bad mouth, I try to keep that off the blog. I do that because I figure some of you may find that offensive. I decided for this week, I’ll pick a song and discuss it.

The song I picked is “No Vaseline”. Basically, Ice Cube was done with his former group members. He didn’t like the direction the group was going in and really didn’t like their manager, Jerry Heller. He tried to tell everyone the truth about what was going on and nobody wanted to listen, so he went off on his own. He raps about what they used to be and how they basically sold out. He talks about how they let Jerry and money break them up. The song is actually sightly humorous if you listen and know the story behind it. If you ask me, it’s kind of the beginning of serious diss tracks. (For those of you who aren’t into rap, this is where rappers go at each other in their songs.)

This is your rap history lesson for the week. If you haven’t seen “Straight Outta Compton”, you definitely should.

Pic courtesy of pinterest

Song Lyric Saturday with Nicki Minaj

Nicki Minaj has had a bit of a diva meltdown lately, and I don’t know what’s going on there. Her tour got moved to next year- I hear it was due to her new album “Queen” coming out later than anticipated and she wanted to make sure the tour was as good as she wanted it to be. She cited “production issues.”

Okay, then.

I’ve also heard it was due to low ticket sales.

Then she came for Kylie Jenner, Travis Scott and their baby Stormi. His album did better than hers, putting her at #2. She blamed a baby for her not being #1.

Come on, Nicki, get it together, sis.

Nicki Minaj pic

If that wasn’t enough, Cardi B threw a shoe at her during a Fashion Week party because she was tired of Nicki clowning her.

Twitter and the rest of social media had a field day with that one.

Let me back up a bit. This is Nicki Minaj, who busted up the Kanye West hit “Monster” years ago. It’s my favorite Nicki feature of all time. It’s like she walked in the studio, said her piece and walked out like she dropped the mic with everyone staring at her.

“And if I’m fake I ain’t notice cause my money ain’t

Let me get this straight, wait I’m the rookie?

But my features and my shows ten times your pay?”

Basically, she’s not fake, she’s not brand new and she’s got the skills to prove it, even on her worst day. She’s rapped her way to where she is now but she’s gone from the top to the next best. I don’t think she likes it, but the way she’s publicly showing it isn’t exactly cute. I think she might want to sit back a bit and look at what she’s accomplished (a lot) and focus on her work.

Pic courtesy of pinterest

Song Lyric Saturday with Cardi B

I love Cardi B. I waited until her baby was born to give Cardi her week on the blog because I was curious about the name. Kulture? Poor baby. I’d go by my middle name, Kiari, and move along with my life.

For the record, I’m not a fan of weird names because of mine. My name has been mangled for as long as I remember so that’s why my kids have somewhat normal names.

I digress.

Why do I like Cardi B? She’s funny, loud and just doesn’t care what you think about her. She’s also very honest about her past. She was a stripper and is like “yeah, and what?” I probably wouldn’t make her mad. I know she was on a VH1 show but I didn’t hear of her until “Bodak Yellow” and that is when my car stereo gave up. It couldn’t play anything else all of a sudden…

“Invasion of Privacy” is good. I love a few of the songs. My favorite? I’m stuck between “Be Careful” and “Thru Your Phone”. The first time I heard her rapping “You gonna turn me into Left-Eye” I almost fell over laughing. If you aren’t familiar with the singer, Lisa “Left-Eye” Lopes burnt down her boyfriend, Andre Rison’s mansion after a fight in the mid 1990’s. He played for the Atlanta Falcons. She was known for having a fiery temper.

Lots of people can’t stand Cardi, but I really like that she is unapologetically herself and honest. She is also super grateful for her fans. Keep doing you, Cardi. It will keep paying off.

Song Lyric Saturday with Jay-Z

I covered Beyonce not long ago in Song Lyric Saturday with Beyonce.

How could I not cover Jay-Z? I’ve liked him since he came out in the 90s. I read an interview about his cheating on Beyonce and something got me: he said the hardest part was having to look at her face and see the pain he caused.

I can understand that. It’s so incredibly hard to have to talk to someone about this. Matthew and I cried together when I finally told him everything. This was the worst conversation we ever had. I felt dirty, sad and all kinds of emotions. I faced up to what I’d done, and I didn’t expect it to be fun.

Onto the music..

“Y’all should be afraid of what I’m gonna do next”- “Onto the Next One”

First..the beat. It hits hard and I love it. Then, that lyric. I’m always onto something- either improving myself or my life. When I was working, I was constantly thinking of ways to move up.

What’s next? I have no idea but I’m sure it’ll be great.

Pic courtesy of Pinterest

Song Lyric Saturday with Kendrick Lamar

I had a different post in mind for this week, but then the “Black Panther Album” came out. It’s the soundtrack for the movie that will be out by the time this post is up.

I don’t usually listen to soundtracks, especially not for action movies. I’m not into either. My tastes run to comedies, some dramas, or romantic movies.

A few clicks on Twitter changed this. I was on the trending topics page and clicked on #BlackPantherTheAlbum and started reading. Apparently I was missing out. I looked up a few of the songs on YouTube.

I had heard “Pray For Me” once on the radio recently, but not all of it. Once I heard all of it, I was immediately blown away. Kendrick Lamar did something special with that song and the whole album.

In my opinion, he went full-blown Kanye West in the second verse. He had the same speed, topic and flow. I’m a Kanye fan so I’m okay with that. We all need a hero, we just need to look in the mirror. I think that’s what he was trying to say.

“I fight you, I fight the world, I fight myself”- who can’t relate to THAT?

The lyrics are deep and the beat hits hard. I love it. It’s on repeat and will probably become my new ringtone.