Later on, there are some particularly revealing bits after Kim is asked about the rather violent messages in her lyrics. As she told People, it's that brand of lyricism that "made us our money" and that their "fans wanted to hear." She added that she, Biggie, and others in her Bad Boy circle were "just telling it like it is" and that it will "take time before we all start rapping about flowers." It's that "telling it like it is" feeling that makes her "It's All About The Benjamins" verse so goddamn amazing and—let's be real here—incredibly colorful.
After Biggie, 24, was killed in a drive-by shooting last March in Los Angeles, Kim moved into his Teaneck, N.J., two-story condo, where she follows a daily ritual that she says keeps her in touch with her fallen lover. After tumbling out of bed, she walks to the living room, picks up the mahogany box that contains half of Biggie's cremated remains (his estranged wife, Faith Evans, keeps the other half), and gently kisses the polished wood. "I don't do anything before I do that," says Kim, 22. "Saying hello to him gives me the power to face the day."
Her delivery is clear and aggressive, a direct series of punches to every part of your body before she lands a finishing uppercut so brutal that you have to seek out the album version to truly understand it. As anyone who's heard the track on the radio in 2017 can attest—and yes, it still gets plenty of airtime on certain (a.k.a. the best) stations—it is heavily censored, especially when the mic is passed to Kim. Her verse is a nonstop barrage of profane tough talk that blends hardcore bully rap and horror-movie imagery. Right out of the gate, she throws a fucking "hex" on her adversary's family, embodying a witch decked out in all-black garb ("dressed in all black like The Omen) and ready to kill ("got your friends singin', 'This is for my homie'").And it only gets better from there. While the preceding verses from Puff Daddy, Jadakiss, and Sheek Louch were relaxed bravado, started-from-the-bottom fire, and drug-czar badassery—in that order—Kim goes ballistic and threatens to make someone deep throat her German Ruger. She also completely owns what's typically a male insult ("Suck a dick"), flaunts her platinum-coated womb (!), and makes another slick reference to her arsenal ("stash .380s in Mercedes"). Oh, and lest I forget: There's also the Angela Lansbury hat tip ("If it's murder you know she wrote it").
Her last two bars are so punishing, so filthy that you'll basically have no idea what the hell she's saying if you hear this song on the radio.