Favorite Song Friday #12




Mustard has been one of the most prolific producers of this decade, and he continued his streak with the release of his album titled Perfect Ten. This album showcases Mustard’s production by recruiting some of the most prominent and relevant names in hip-hop. Mustard has worked with many artists in the past ten years with names such as YG, Big Sean, and Ty Dolla $ign to name a few. During his career, Mustard has made many connections with musicians and Perfect Ten was a perfect time to show how relevant his production and connections are. Perfect Ten is Mustard’s third studio album and arguably his best yet. The album features Young Thug, Future, Nipsey Hussle, A$AP Rocky and many more. While he’s a newcomer to the scene, Roddy Ricch has what I think is one of the best songs on the album with “Ballin'”.

Roddy Ricch, a 21-year-old from Compton been on the rise recently with collaborations from Marshmello, Meek Mill, and Mustard. “Ballin'” is a song that is purely about success and how one’s hard work can lead to big opportunities, especially in music. Roddy Ricch, being a newcomer to hip-hop and recently finding success within the past year is the perfect candidate for this song. This song is an anthem for prosperity and triumph, however, it is also a song that gives off a positive aura and can easily motivate one to chase their dreams. With “Ballin'” being certified Gold and Perfect Ten debuting at #8 on the US Billboard 200, Mustard and Roddy Ricch are seemingly living the dream they presented in “Ballin'” and I hope their success never ends.


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Favorite Song Friday #9


“Forgot About Dre”


Dr. Dre is without a doubt one of the most influential, successful, and known talents in all of hip-hop. Being a member of N.W.A surely gave Dr. Dre his notoriety but it wasn’t until his 1992 album The Chronic came out. This album is a classic in every way and still stands the test of time even today. This album also marked the introduction of legendary musician Snoop Dogg, however, today’s song comes from Dr. Dre’s sophomore album, 2001. “Forgot About Dre” served as the second single from the album following “Still D.R.E” in 1999. Eminem makes a guest appearance on the song and instantly gives this song a new sense of purpose and liveliness.

“Forgot About Dre” prompts a simple question to the listeners when Dr. Dre ponders if he can ever truly be forgotten. With two classic albums, a history with N.W.A, and being responsible for introducing Eminem and Snoop Dogg to the musical world can Dr. Dre ever be left out of the conversation? Dr. Dre hits hard on this track when he firmly answers this question by flaunting his wealth, lifestyle, and lyrical prowess throughout the song. Eminem comes through for Dr. Dre by detailing some of Dr. Dre’s accomplishments and reiterating that he should never be forgotten about. Additionally, Eminem adds his own twisted lyrics into the track and show that Eminem too should be known and respected. Fast-forward almost 20 years later and Dr. Dre is one of the most iconic rappers of all time especially with his well-known endeavor of “Beats by Dre”. Eminem too is regarded as a legend by many even if his newer work doesn’t stack up against his early albums. Dr. Dre not only reintroduced himself into the rap game with “Forgot About Dre” but he also reminded everyone that he will never be forgotten.

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Favorite Song Friday #8


“Wait For Me”


Big Sean is perhaps not one of the first artists that come to mind when you mention the word “underrated” but in my book, he is the definition of the word. After a slew of mixtapes, Big Sean released his debut album Finally Famous in 2011 and with it came “Wait For Me”. The song is rather upbeat while it discusses the trials and tribulations of relationships when becoming rich and famous. In this song, Big Sean details how he lost his girlfriend due to his work and ponders if it’s too late for him to get her back during the chorus. I personally love this song and album because of Big Sean’s dedication to his craft and the infusing of his personal feelings into his lyrics. However, this song also features Lupe Fiasco and we get to hear some fun wordplay and rhymes from him.

Lupe’s verse also discusses how his musical career has kept him running late and missing many opportunities in life. Instead of feeling regret, Lupe simply says to give up and be late for everything rather than on time. I really enjoy the chemistry that these two exhibit on the track as it’s my favorite song on the album by far. Big Sean is severely underrated in hip-hop but with songs such as this, he can be given credit for his great lyrics and delivery that gave him the opportunity to be where he is now.

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Favorite Song Friday #6


“Baby Blue”


Action Bronson is an unusual character in the hip-hop genre. This former chef turned rapper stands out more than others with his unique voice and his stout demeanor. While Action Bronson would go on to make four albums from 2011-2017, one song of his stands out more than the rest. “Baby Blue” is perhaps Action Bronson’s best song as it showcases all of his talent and creativity in roughly five minutes. Throughout the course of “Baby Blue” we see Action Bronson glide across each verse with ease and style, this then transitions to him delivering a chilling and appropriate chorus to reinforce the idea of the song. “Baby Blue” is simply Action Bronson rapping about the women in his life and how they only seem to want him for his money. Action Bronson does a great job on this song, however, things get even more interesting when he recruits Chance The Rapper for a guest feature.

Chance The Rapper’s verse is arguably one of his best verses of all time. This verse is simple but the wordplay is fantastic. By starting off every line with “I hope…”, Chance The Rapper is allowed to direct his aggression towards those who did him wrong in the past. Chance The Rapper focuses this verse towards an unknown ex-girlfriend who he sarcastically wishes the best for. The wordplay that Chance The Rapper exhibits on “Baby Blue” is perhaps one of the best moments of any song from 2015. With Mark Ronson composing this fantastic and jazzy beat, Action Bronson and Chance The Rapper make this a song worth mentioning for years to come. I hope to see Action Bronson and Chance The Rapper attempt to make another song in this style, as I feel it highlights both of their individual talents, but it also shows the teamwork they have to offer while working with each other.

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Favorite Song Friday #5


“Rollout (My Business)”  – Ludacris


Ludacris was one of the first artists I remember enjoying as a child. In fact, Ludacris got me in trouble in Kindergarten for quoting his hit song “Move Bitch”. As I grew older, Word of Mouf has since become one of my favorite albums of all time. “Rollout” is essentially flexing at it’s finest (at least for 2001). Ludacris flaunts his extravagant and opulent life as a successful rapper and celebrity. In “Rollout”, Ludacris brags about the usual money, cars, drugs, and women while still standing out to other similar songs from this period. With an explosive and fun beat, Ludacris made one of the most infectious and entertaining songs of the 2000s. Combining the playful beat with an empowering chorus makes “Rollout” a timeless classic in my book. Even with the reference to a PlayStation 2, Ludacris proves once again that he deserves to be in the books.

I really enjoy this song because of its unique perspective on flexing in 2001. Ludacris seemingly plays the part of an observer who questions all of his purchases. This easily paints a clever and vivid picture of someone constantly bothering Ludacris about the way he spends his money and how irresponsible it is. While switching from questioning to flaunting, Ludacris makes the most of his almost four-minute runtime. Which surely this song is old, it still can be enjoyed and blasted in 2018 and beyond. I highly recommend Word of Mouf to any fan of this song or Ludacris himself, as I believe it’s his best album to date. Word of Mouf is filled with ingenious wordplay and perhaps one of the best features by the late Nate Dogg. Don’t be surprised to see Ludacris or Word of Mouf to pop up again in the near future. Until then, I will still be listening to “Rollout” on a daily basis like I have been for the past 10 years.

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Favorite Song Friday #4


“Pyramids” – Frank Ocean


Very rarely does a song come around that can make you feel nearly every emotion over the course of it’s run. “Pyramids” by Frank Ocean is from his debut album channel ORANGE which came out in 2012. This song can honestly only be explained to someone as an experience that must be explored. “Pyramids” feels like a movie after several listens as Frank Ocean gracefully details every aspect of his story about a pimp who falls in love with a client. However, this story is told through using metaphors and comparisons to Cleopatra and her time as a ruler. “Pyramids” is one of the few songs to come out this decade in the R&B genre that I can affirmatively say is worth listening to. With two albums and an astonishing track record, Frank Ocean is definitely on the way to officially becoming the 2010’s R&B icon in my opinion.

“Pyramids” works so well because of its ability to break away from the standard paradigm of R&B story-telling. This song will make you feel many emotions over the course of almost 10-minute runtime. Emotions such as love, hype, and sadness are just a few of the many that I can name that relates to the story of “Pyramids”. The active comparison of prostitution to Cleopatra is quite clever when further investigated, especially relating to the seemingly intriguing fact that Cleopatra has been a relevant topic amongst American media for quite some time now. “Pyramids” is undeniably the standout track on channel ORANGE due to its complexity and replayability factor, however, I must also recommend “Pink Matter” and “Bad Religion” if you’ve never heard the album before. Until Frank Ocean releases another great album you can rest assured that “Pyramids” is my favorite Frank Ocean song and perhaps one of my favorite songs of the decade.

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Favorite Song Friday #3


“The Story of Adidon” – Pusha T


At first, there was Kendrick Lamar, Tory Lanez, Ludacris, and Meek Mill. These brave rappers decided to take a stance upon the media-giant Drake, however, most of these feuds have either been resolved or ended in defeat (Meek Mill especially). It wasn’t until 2018 when an unlikely hero would emerge to finally stand up to this industry icon. This is “The Story of Adidon” by Pusha T.

After roughly seven years of throwing insults and sneaking disses into songs, Pusha T finally snapped this year. “The Story of Adidon” is a welcomed return to the diss-era of rap where rap used to flourish. This method of rapping is very nice to see because it emphasizes the pen over the sword especially today where violence and hate run rampant in the world. Pusha T absolutely demolishes Drake’s credibility and reputation as a prominent figure of hip-hop. With images of black-face and accusations of having a child with a pornstar, Pusha T won this feud without a doubt. In seven years Pusha T finally broke through barriers and fought the opposition in order to dethrone a king. “The Story of Adidon” is going to be a landmark in the rap game until Pusha T needs to inevitably top his own work. I must commend Pusha T for doing us all a favor and proficiently calling out the 6 God himself. Pusha T definitely has earned the title of “King Push” with the release of this song.

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Favorite Song Friday #2


“Another Part of Me” – Michael Jackson


“Another Part of Me” was released in 1987 by Michael Jackson on his seventh album Bad. “Another Part of Me” was introduced to me when I attended the Captain EO attraction at Walt Disney World in Florida. Captain EO was produced by George Lucas, directed by Francis Ford Coppola, and starred Michael Jackson. Captain EO tells the story of Michael Jackson as Captain EO and his adventures to meet the “Supreme Leader” and give her the “gift”(music). This mission gets complicated when the crew crash lands and is subsequently captured which forces Michael Jackson to present the “Supreme Leader” the “gift”. The gift then turns her planet into a paradise and her people along with herself into beautiful Greek citizens. This song played during the show itself and then at the end when guests would leave the theatre.

The main reason I chose this song for this week’s FSF is the heart and soul that is heard throughout this track. Michael Jackson clearly believes that Captain EO and his gift can change the world in the film and therefore it translates perfectly into song form. Without having even seen Captain EO, one can enjoy this song simply due to it’s infectious and groovy beat and it’s storytelling aspects. “Another Part of Me” is a reminder that we can all change the world if we channel our inner peace and ultimate willingness to do good things in the world. This song informs the listener that changing the world is something anyone can do because we as humans simply have an inherent lust for doing the right thing even if that means showing a different and lesser seen side of yourself. “Another Part of Me” is a song I will always enjoy as it reminds me of the attraction at Disney that is unfortunately no longer operational, however, it also serves as a reminder to do good in the world and show people your “other side”.