…That’s when you start to stare at who’s in the mirror,
And see yourself as a kid again, and you get embarrassed.
And I got nothin’ to do but make you look stupid as parents,
You fuckin’ do-gooders; too bad you couldn’t do good at marriage!
Through every ghetto I carry the heavy metal,
Just in case a shovel is needed when arguments are settled.
“All I see is blinking lights, track boards and fat mics. 950s, SP-12s, MPC60s…”
– A.G., “Next Level,” from Show & A.G.’s Goodfellas, 1995. DJ Premier closes down the legendary D&D Studios (aka HeadQCourterz) today and migrates to Kaufman Astoria Studios in Queens. The recording den, where Rakim, KRS-One, Jay Z, Nas and Gang Starr made some of hip-hop’s most canonized songs, will come to a close in 2015 due to new building ownership.
You got a lot of money; OK, sure…
You can’t buy class, you’re a bum with a manicure.
Happiness is temporary, always has been.
I just lost one…but sometimes I win,
I always spread love…but sometimes I sin.
How you looking like beef jerky, beefing in every verse,
But never beefing in person? Randy Savage.
You wouldn’t snap a Slim Jim,
You wouldn’t rip a wrapping on Christmas in Santa’s attic
With the hands of Eddie Scissors…ain’t you average?
Before you act black,
Or try to dress black,
You better be born black,
Or I’ll call your shit wack.
They said he was dangerous, well, I’m concerned…
How could he be so dangerous with his back turned?
They said, “Freeze! Halt!” The brother stopped
Threw his hands in the air, yeah, and still he got shot.
They said he had a shiny object in his hand,
So they killed the man.
And is this justice? No way, José.
He didn’t get arrested, he was suspended with pay.
Talk about armed and dangerous, accounted…
How come I never heard nothin else about it?
I’m dead up, I’m goin head up, see, the buck stops
Here. I’m sick and tired of corrupt cops.
I gotta drop, cause I don’t think it will ever stop
My brain is a Tec-9 and it’s kept cocked.
And it’s got just a few more rounds to go,
They’re goin pound for pound, blow for blow.
You want peace? Let the unjust stuff cease:
If we don’t have justice, there’ll be no peace.
You were put here to protect us.
But who protects us from you?
Fuck the police, comin straight from the underground…
A young nigga got it bad cause I’m brown.
And not the other color so police think
They have the authority to kill a minority.
Word to Trayvon and Mike Brown,
Them pigs’ll gun you down and call it ‘standin’ they ground.’
The situation wack, we need a moment of silence,
Or violence…I’m only being honest.
Don’t condone it but fuck it, we ridin’,
Ain’t goin’ down without a fight.
Middle finger up if they ever try and read me my rights,
Hangin’ out the window screaming “F the police!”
Full moons, skunk weed all up in the room;
You got the munchies, baby? Ice cold milk and Lorna Doones.
I start thinking:
How many souls hip-hop has affected?
How many dead folks this art resurrected?
How many nations this culture connected?
Who am I to judge one’s perspective?
I think back to when I was robbin’ my own kind,
The police didn’t pay it no mind…
But when I start robbin the white folks?
Now I’m in the Pen with the soap-on-a-rope.
I said it before and I’ll still taught it:
Every muthafucka with a color is Most Wanted.
I’mma tell you a little somethin about this chick around my way,
She was a dime with a brown skin complexion…
She looked so good you’d think you wouldn’t need protection,
Girlfriend was top choice selection, around in every section.
They got twisted, she said “No condom,” so he risked it,
Caught in the mix and now you sick kid.
Word is bond, I thought by now you learned your lesson:
Fucking around with no protection.
A thin line between the haters and the ones who love us.
A thinner line from the freedom and the foul judges,
In the streets where the snake niggas hold grudges.
Think you figured it out, but you don’t have a clue.
Think you on top of the world, but the world on top of you.
I think if Adam would have had another squeeze he might
Not have ate those fruits from the leaves of life.
Far as Eve…there couldn’t have been a more deceiving wife;
Seeing the nigga had a weak spot, and she was right.
It’s for real though, let’s connect, politic…ditto!
We could trade places, get lifted in the staircases,
Word up, peace, incarcerated scarfaces.
I love Dr. King, but violence might be necessary;
Cause when you live on MLK and it gets very scary,
You might have to pull your AK, send one to the cemetery.
Little brats yellin ‘Trick or Treat’ all through my screen door,
When y’all should be at home sleep,
Instead of at my front porch 15 deep.
The jack o’ lantern came in handy…
I can turn my porch light out like I ain’t got no candy.
But ain’t that somethin?
You buy a Halloween costume and a pumpkin,
Almost gave your children a heart attack.
It’s a tradition, but who the hell started that?
This year Halloween fell on a weekend
Me and Geto Boys are trick-or-treatin’
Robbin’ little kids for bags…
I knew this girl named Tropicana,
She’s always juicin’.
Producing cash for a sexual task.
She loves men that trick like Halloween and treat…
You ain’t paid? Then your grade is incomplete.
God really exists, I tell you like this:
It resides inside.
And anybody tell you different,
Just selling you religion,
Tryin’ to keep your ass in line.
Now when freaks get dressed to go out at night,
They like to wear leather jackets, chains and spikes.
They wear rips and zippers all in their shirts,
Real tight pants and fresh mini skirts.
All kinds of colors runnin’ through their hair,
And you could just about find a freak anywhere.
But then again, you could know someone all their life,
But might not know they’re a freak unless you see them at night.
My vocab is powerful, spit shit subliminal,
Slang therapist, my whole style is criminal.
Bugged like Bob Digital, fly visual,
Mind, body and soul, I’m a strong individual…
Come through in the final hour, with gun showers
Stand the fuck up like Flav to fight the power.
I’m an activist, socialist, deadly ass poetist
Supreme Clientele, I’m a goddamn vocalist!
It was Saturday night and I was feelin kinda funny,
Gold around my neck, pockets full of money.
Rap is like a set-up…a lot of games,
A lot of suckers with colorful names.
‘I’m so-and-so,’ ‘I’m this, I’m that.’
But they all just wick-wick-wack.
Different day, same shit, same script, different plate
This the way of the world, and I’m just tryin’ ta fit in place.
They’d rather see me fail than succeed,
That’s why I’m alone on my own with no team.
Don’t need no green, though I got some to spend;
In the end…all I really need is a friend.
My mic is a Magnum.
See me and this chick, we go back like Cro-Magnon.
Man…we did it in the back of your Magnum;
I said, ‘Put them Lifestyles back, give me the Magnums.’
I never rapped on an R&B record, and I never will.
I got these phony muthafuckas talkin bout ‘Let’s keep it real.’
But they don’t know how to take they own advisement,
Going out, do it solo on an advertisement, commercializing.
Fuckin’ sell out, nigga…this is hip-hop, not fashion.
Excuse us for the news,
You might not be amused;
But did you know White comes from Black?
No need to be confused.
Some people tell me that I need help.
…Some people can fuck off and go to hell.
Black boy, black boy, turn that shit down.
You know that America don’t wanna hear the sound
Of the bass drum jungle music, go back to Africa,
Nigga I’ll arrest ya if you’re holding up traffic.
I’ll be damned if I listen, so cops save your breath
And write another ticket if you have any left.
And I’m breaking eardrums while I’m breaking the law,
I’m disturbing all the peace cause Sister Soldier said ‘War!’
So catch me if you can, if you can, here’s a donut,
Cause once you drive away, yo, you know I’m gonna go nuts.
And turn it up to where it was before, nice try!
But you can’t stop the power of the bass in your eye.
Chop suey don’t do me no good,
I gotta have corn beef and cabbage if I wanna manage.
I never eat pig, but I’ll fuck up a potato,
I’m not a dago, but pasta’s all that.