My humps my humps my lovely lady lumps?
Black Eye Peas latest single My humps
Well as a West Indian I am a born pea-ologist. I know about all sorts of peas; peas and rice, rice and peas, stew peas, split peas, pigeon peas, green peas, dry peas and of course the black eyed peas.
So today's musical blog I'm going to tackle the Black Eyed Peas, the group, not the ones that go well in a plate of rice with some stew chicken or with pieca pig tail on the side. lol
Now I remember back in 98 when this group first started making waves. I personally wasn't feeling them that much as I saw them as trying to be a poor man's version of the Legendary Roots crew doing the live instrument thing. One of my sistren, who dislikes hip hop with a passion, actually thought they were kind of cool though so it made me sit up and take notice as to who these guys were because with the praise coming from her either they weren't rap at all or they were really really good.
Well turns out they were neither in my opinion, they just fell somewhere in between. It was a three man squad lead by producer rapper Will.I.Am and featuring Apl.de.apl and Taboo (And don't ask me which one is Taboo and which one is Apl cause I really don't think anyone cares). They dropped their first album Behind the Front featuring lots of live instruments which was/is kind of uncommon for hip hop. Interesting I thought! The single Joints and Jams was kind of catchy as was Karma.
Ok well maybe they can improve the rapping and be somebody I thought. They got potential. Enter Bridging the gap their second album. A slight improvement or a slight lapse depending on how you look at it. To be honest again, I must have listened to that joint like twice maybe before it got shelved. I think it was better produced than their debut but it definitely didn't move me.
apparently it didn't move many other folk either because brothers probably didn't even go wood with the record sales.
Suddenly its 2003! Guess who's bizack? Black Eyed Peas in the hisoouse! Wait a second that looks like them but.... there is a girl in the group singing? What! Fergie?? Isn't that that chick that does the weight watchers ads that was married to British royalty? No another Fergie! Oh! What? Huh!
Still, Hey Mama with the latin tinged flavor is kicking like a Shaw Brothers film. Lets get retarded morphes into lets get it started and is playing in NBA adds and dudes are rapping not only with Janet's strip accomplice Justin but are on the Superbowl half time show. Say word!
Oh man they stepped it up a notch. They brought their A game, they left their nines at home and brought their skillz to the battle. Their rapping must have improved!
Actually they have gotten worse.
I could appreciate the first two albums. It was uncompromised hip hop. Not the greatest mind you but they were sticking to their vision, doing their own thing. But I guess reality, bills and baby mommas must have stepped in because in order to stick around the game homeboys sold out like seasons tickets to the Toronto Maple Leafs! Ok well maybe sellout is a harsh word to use but lets say that there has been a conspicuous dumbing down of their music. Can anyone recite a Black Eyed Peas lyric from the last two albums that's not part of a chorus? Lets see "Lets get it started in here" no, umm "hey momma its that beat to make you move momma get on the floor and" ...no and definitely not "my humps my humps my lovely lady lumps" sung as Fergie suggestively feels herself up in the video.
Sigh! Actually I could deal with Get it started, the hey mama and even don't Phunk with my Heart a rip off of Lisa Lisa's I wonder if I take you home that they did for the first single for this years Monkey Business album but My humps? Are you kidding me! Come on if you want to sing about your feminine lady parts could you not do it in a better way or at least a somewhat more adult way which is not to say swear or use vulgarity but humps and lady lumps just sounds like nursery rhyme talk. That's what passes for a song these days? Come on now. Those lyrics are making me long for the intellectually deep days of yore when the Spice girls ruled the airwaves. Maybe I'll have to dissect the metaphysical meaning of the Pussy Cat dolls 'don't Cha'. sigh!
And no I'm not blaming Fergie for ruining the group. She's eye candy who can sing a bit and who was apparently added to the roster by the record company and chosen over another candidate based on looks. Hey don't hate her cause she was born pretty.
My issue is dumbing down your music to sell. Yea I know everyone has a price and everyone does it and maybe one day (soon dammit soon, I'm waiting for the call now, if I'm not home leave a message) someone will offer me something to sell out for. But if you needed to dumb things down couldn't you have scaled it down a tad and not all the way down like you have now? Or better yet not dumb it down at all. Yea I know that's naive thinking on my part. Yet can I not hope for someone out there with some artistic integrity? And while I'm at it can I not also require my entertainment to be more than just catchy hooks. Lyrics somebody want lyrics? Yes me I want lyrics. I want to be moved by music, I want to say whoa that's deep son, that made me think, that spoke to me. But I'm not going to get that from My humps my humps. Sigh oh well one can hope!
The faith in me shall set me free (reflections)
Speaking of which. I know the Mad bull and B.Art had a few pieces a while back on the man Jah Cure but I must say that his song True Reflections is one big bomb tune. I still think he's guilty and needs to just do his jail time like a man. I cant give you special treatment or believe you more than joe average because you are a celebrity but still not only is Reflections a great tune but the bredren has a very haunting voice that tugs away deep in you. Serious ting!
Anyway until next weeks Musical Friday, I'm out. Have a great weekend guys.