Waka Flocka Flips It On Us: Who’s Next?
Who needs bars?
Being lyrical is almost scoffed at in a day and age where an artist (cough) Shy Glizzy (cough) can get a hit by rhyming: “I’m so awwwsome; I’m out here like a possum.”
We’ve got Young Thug out here sounding like a Lil’ Wayne adlib and everybody knows Migosall need to sit down talking about they “cook like a professor.” (Who? A professor at a culinary school? I don’t get it.)
But before you start saying I’m slamming today’s music, we can trace the disdain for metaphors, similes and common sense back further to Soulja Boy Tell ’em deriding Lupe Fiasco for having the nerve to put thought into his albums. And the grandfathers of terrible rap: 2 Live Crew.
This is why it brought joy to my heart to hear Waka Flocka borrow over-achiever J. Cole’s track to bless us with this. Social message. Check. Lyricism. Check. Rhymes that we don’t need rapgenius to understand. Double check.
Earbuds needed, as this ain’t no nursery rhyme. It does sound like the work of Cole, Kendrick Lamar and others are getting some of these others thinking they should imitate Avis and “try harder.”
My hope is that this will become the norm, not the exception for Mr. Flocka. And who knows? Maybe it’ll catch fire and spread through the industry. Who do you think will be next to flex some hidden lyrical acumen? This is my wish list. Share yours.
1. Young Thug
It sounds like this gentleman snatched Lil Wayne’s lean-inspired, treasure troll flow (but none of the CMB star’s occasional genius) as he giggles and hiccups through his rhymes. If he has some Jay Electronica bubbling somewhere within him, I say: release the Kraken!
2. Shy Glizzy
I thought “Handsome and Wealthy” was the dumbest song out until I heard this hot mess. “Awwsome” is a hit let the radio execs tell it, but I would believe it if you told me it was the result of a collaboration between Barney and one of those Cash Money artists we never hear from. What’s up with the babytalk delivery, people? Stawp it!
All I want for my birthday is improved rhymes from this entertainer who is clearly capable of better, as a former standout student. My b-day isn’t until the end of May, so we have time.
4. Bobby Shmurda
That video of him essentially buck dancing at a record label event haunts my nightmares. If he can do better than sound like a GBE offshoot, I’d be willing to intervene and save him from the trolls lighting him up in these YouTube comments. But sadly enough, looks like he might be too busy fighting Johnny Law to go into the lab and focus on his craft.
5. Chief Keef
Speaking of GBE: You know what I “don’t like”? Rhymes that were scribbled on a Harold’s Chicken napkin en route to the studio. I realize he’s the people’s champ, but clearly, he will not get to the top of anyone’s Best Rapper list.
You know what other spitkickers should do when they get writers’ block? Crank “Handsome and Wealthy” or “Fight Night.” Because on their worst day, they can trump the lazy lyrics coming out of this camp.
Who else would you add to the list? Are we asking enough of our artists?