Day 241: "Ain't Worried 'Bout Shit" – Birdman and Lil Wayne, Like Father, Like Son, 2006
When you're trying to feel on top of the world, there's no Wayne release quite as fitting as Like Father, Like Son, so we'll keep that train going today. To quote Wayne, "I'm important in rap, but I'm special with gats." To quote Wayne again, "And as for money / watch the young god turn cash to money / it's that simple." This is just good shit. Last fall, David Drake nailed its appeal in a great essay for Complex that I recommend reading in full:
Yet Like Father, Like Son aged well because it understood Wayne's strengths, and at that time, his biggest strength was his ability to embody its clichés, and to express them in fresh ways. For knowing fans of street rap, these tropes—the Mafioso interludes, choruses about gangsters getting chubby and moving to Miami, the mastery of violence, and the conspicuous consumption—aren't drags on the art, which need to be escaped. Instead, they're a common vocabulary; an assertion that the artist understands the rules of the game. It's not a great rapper's job to reject these clichés, but to energize them—to render them more fully, in deeper shades and greater commitment than the competition. And so he did, in over 18 tracks. This sort of achievement may not play well with critical acclaim, and it isn't easy to push in a publicity campaign. But it's great for long-term replay-ability.
Check that out here, listen to the song, and let your worries wash away to the dulcet tones of, uh, Birdman growling about he'll kill you if you think he can't make a billion dollars.
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