Objectively Correct Lists

The Noisey Guide to Eating Pussy

You're all extremely welcome.

by Charlotte Richardson Andrews
18 April 2017, 11:30am

Eating out, going down, breakfast in bed, dining at the Y, whispering to Venus – whatever you want to call it, cunnilingus is still an unreasonably taboo subject. Films are usually given a higher classification if they include footage of someone going to town between a woman's legs and female ejaculation in porn is literally banned under BBFC laws in the UK. This is the state of affairs we are currently working with. Men, meanwhile, can jizz with wild abandon wherever they want. Pouting face emoji, face with steam from nose emoji, wastebasket emoji, etc. Still, that which is repressed often finds a way of expressing itself somehow and music has, time and time again, come to dust the cobwebs off mainstream culture's ideas about gender roles, sexual politics and, indeed, the gates of mystery themselves.

Artists across the board – from riot grrrl to R&B – have boldly buried their faces where chaste crooners of previous decades had feared to go, thus establishing a rich lineage of pussy power anthems. You can take your pick, from TLC's debut single "Ain't 2 Proud 2 Beg" in which Left Eye (RIP) extolled the virtues of lovers who would "kiss both sets of lips", to Bikini Kill's "Anti-Pleasure Dissertation" in which Kathleen Hanna railed against dudes who kissed-and-told ("did you tell them, how punk fucking rock my pussy smelled?").

Yes, diverse sex education in the UK is still off-limits, cishet dudes still need a map and flashlight in the bedroom and cultural imperatives around pleasing the puss are still loaded with tired misogyny (cc: Blue Valentine). However, the good news is that rappers, rockers, singers and even comedians like Key and Peele are fighting the good fight with style while also basically providing a lick-by-numbers at the same time. So, in honour of their services, here are ten of the best paeans to pussy-eating from the last three decades:

SYD – "DROWN IN IT"

"Tonight I'm gonna swim in it, dive in it, drown in it… "

Queer artists are increasingly more conspicuous these days, but queer love songs that centre lady x lady desire in any meaningful, lasting and genuine way – in rap and beyond – are still as rare as unicorn poop. I've got a lot of time for Young MA's steal-yr-girl fuck songs, but sometimes it's all about tender slow jams over swaggering seductions. Enter: "Drown In It", from Syd's wickedly good solo debut FIN. At just over a minute long, it's less song and more interlude; the kind that trails off in a haze of promise – all gauzy, silken vocals and a simple, echoing melody. Which is kind of a shame because I, personally, would have enjoyed hearing a lot more of this. Ideally 34 minutes more in order to fully appreciate the sexy but not at all distracting arrangement in which Syd is so deeply enamoured with the concept of a vagina that she wants to "die in it". Truly Shakespearean stuff.

SWV – "DOWNTOWN"

"You gotta go downtown, that's the way to my love…"

The OG oral sex anthem of the 90s, courtesy of R&B queens SWV. Coko, Lelee and Taj were carefree advocates of female pleasure from the get-go, with tunes like "Black Pudd'n" and "Give It To Me" that demand servicing immediately and to a high standard, gladly providing a list of detailed instructions for anybody who hasn't done the reading ahead of class. The NYC trio's biggest hit was a remix of their infinitely less NSFW single "Right Here" – a round-the-way love song that borrowed from Michael Jackson's "Human Nature". But this gospel choir-raised girl group were just as good at do-me jams as they were with chaste devotionals, as this notorious b-side proves. "Downtown" was explicit softcore the 90s way – tropical ocean waves during the intro and a blush-worthy bridge you definitely didn't want your parents to hear leaking out your bedroom speakers.

HORACE BROWN – "TASTE YOUR LOVE"

"I'm not afraid to taste your love, when it comes to making love I do what I gotta do…"

It really doesn't matter that your first name is Horace when you're in possession of a voice like a saucepan of dark chocolate melting gently on a stove. With trills like the flutter of a thousand tongues and a literal three-part harmony on the lyric "hickeys on your thighs!" this song was what YouTube heads often refer to as an "ultimate panty-dropper" in 1994. Yours truly was still very much a virgin when this boss-level cooch appeal kicked down the door in gold-embossed shoes with a low heel and announced itself but I would like to put myself forward as very much among the chorus here.

LIL KIM – "NOT TONIGHT"

"The moral of the story is this: you ain't lickin' this, you ain't stickin' this…"

Long before Amber Rose mobilised against slut-shaming and Nicki Minaj was outchea with Drake and Lil Wayne on a leash each talking about having her ass eaten, Lil Kim was repping for the ladies who liked to get down. Hard Core, her porno-rap opus of a debut, offered up an unrepentantly empowered vision of ratchet sexuality that peaked with "Not Tonight" – a sing-along anthem for women who were done with pussy-shy dudes. The hook – "I don't want dick tonight; eat my pussy right" – was instant rap game canon, while the song's Ladies Night remix, featuring a conspiracy of alpha femmes (Missy, Da Brat, Angie Martinez, Left Eye), quickly went platinum on account of the fact that every single lyric could be repurposed as a tweet with clap emojis between every word.

TORI AMOS – "RASPBERRY SWIRL"

"If you want inside her, well / Boy, you better make her raspberry swirl…"

Tori Amos hearts straight men, even if her music is too "raw" for them to truly appreciate. That's certainly the case on "Raspberry Swirl" which is basically one enormous "ffs, let me do it" to all men. Perhaps that's why so many of the critics who documented her rise in the late 80s/early 90s were prone to couching Amos' piano-jamming sex-positive genius in terms of madness: she was "100 percent crazy"; a "weird chick"; a "Grade A, Class One, Turbo-driven Fruitcake", not unlike the Bob's Burgers parody of her from a few years back. Turns out songs that directly challenge masculinity tend to have a negative effect on the old guard... who knew?

KHIA – "MY NECK, MY BACK (LICK IT)"

" So, lick it now, lick it good / lick this pussy just like you should…"

Has anyone in this entire history of the world ever actually given or gotten head to Khia's "My Neck, My Back"? I'm gonna go ahead and guess no, but do feel free to tweet me with your Khia soundtracked sexual exploits for posterity if I'm mistaken. Everyone from your kid sister to the neighbourhood postie enjoys singing this chorus, which is medically proven to be catchier than herpes, but that's mostly because it's fun to say "pussy" in the same demanding and aggressive way as men have been talking about their dicks since the dawn of the erection, not because this song is actually erotic in any way whatsoever. In summary: this is one for the club and never for the bedroom or wherever you do your fine dining, but anybody who keeps "My Neck, My Back" off a playlist dedicated to beaver devotionals needs to have a quiet but firm word with themselves.

GOD-DES & SHE - "LICK IT"

"There's rules and regulations to pleasing a girl / going downtown could really rock her world…"

Remember when Goddess and She popped on the L Word for a live rendition of this tipping-the-velvet hit in the Sharmen hen party episode? Holland Taylor's Peggy Peabody was in the background clutching her pearls like "oh, this is all very vulgar", but it turns out Taylor was in on it all along – a paid-up member of the oyster divers club! "Lick It" is pussy-eating 101 (plus a little extra), and as a person with a vagina who enjoys receiving head, I can personally vouch for the instructions contained herein. Ignore at your peril.

YELAWOLF FT. DIAMOND - "LICK THE CAT"

"Okay, miss kit cat, can I kiss that? Where them lips at…"

Run the Jewels were on some expert tipping-the-velvet ish when they went back-and-forth with Gangsta Boo on "Love Again (Akinyele Back)", circa RTJ2, but they weren't the first male/female tag-team to put clit-worship on wax. That honour goes to Yelawolf – aka the most (see: only) bangable whiteboy rapper out here – and Diamond (of Crime Mob fame), on this X-rated duet from 2010. I think we can all agree that there's no such thing as a 'real' man, but there is something supremely hot about guys who know their way around a vajayjay and aren't afraid to advertise those skills.

DANNY BROWN - "I WILL"

"Take it off, baby, bend over, let me see it / you looking for a real pussy eater? I can be it"

Pussy paean aficionados will be hard-pressed to find anything as tender, frank and creatively shameless as this fan favourite from Brown's XXX album. Booty-pleasing prowess raps are ten a dozen these days, so genuine odes to facing the nation still feel pretty radical. Danny Brown has GOT YOU though, no schoolboy ewws or rookie tongue action. Why not memorise this classic bar for bar, and impress your friends and family at that next karaoke session?

KEHLANI - "FIRST POSITION"

"Girl, let me put you on with something real, wanna show you how it feels, to rock with something trill…"

The bi-curious girl's anthem the world needed, courtesy of (out bisexual) R&B goddess Kehlani. The standout on her 2014 mixtape You Should Be Here is a master class in both deep seduction and erotic consent, the kind of trap slowjam that would-be queer girls should be losing their dyke V-cards to:

"Could expose you to this life, if that's what you like…
I start off slow so you feel secure, just let me know where you feel it more
If your breath gets quick, that's normal; if my hands move slick, that's normal…"

Who wouldn't wanna be inducted into "that life" by Kehlani? Also, lezbi honest here: (cis) queer women may enjoy record visibility in the mainstream west right now; we're on TV, we're in the charts, we're walking down the aisle and we're taking up space in politics. But our sex lives are still taboo and our bodies are still very much policed by the state. Songs like "First Position" are hot because they demystify our desire and champion our autonomy, in swoon-worthy, boots-knockin' style. Here's to more of that pussy power, in the bedroom and beyond.

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(Lead image via Miley Cyrus' "We Can't Stop", which isn't ostensibly about eating pussy but might as well be)