Easter to me obviously means that Patti Smith album, but like every other little girl in my suburban American neighborhood I was given an annual basket full of candy and wore a pastel-colored dress to find hidden eggs. The holiday lives on in my heart and memory; I still love pastel-colored dresses, only now I chase paper and I like candy paint and I have an apartment full of rap songs that speak to me about pagan traditions cleverly repackaged as Judeo-Christian holidays. Journey with me, won't you, through my record collection...
• Jay-Z, “Intro - Hand it Down” (Memphis Bleek). Those Premier keys at the beginning, sweet like a Cadbury egg. Everybody in '98 regurgitated lines from this, remember? “The last of the realllll hustlers.” “Ponce Funeral Home on Marcy.” Everybody in apt. 15 in the year 2010 is still regurgitating lines from this when we think nobody's watching. Roc-A-Fella, yalllllllll.
Nah this ain't Jigga, it's your lil ni--a Bleek
reportin to these motherfuckers live from the street
game I peeped those, my mind so advanced
at nine I used to geese hoes for Easter clothes.
• Juelz Santana, “Home Run.” I'm still morally opposed to Juelz and the fact that he has millions and I hate the fact that I know what his last album's title was, but not even I can deny the power of a good guilty pleasure song. I mean, I'm only human. Additionally, I just think it's so comical how at the beginning he talks about joining his girl in the shower and feeling her body. He calls her bitch and in the same breath describes how he strokes her breasts. Nothing more vulgar than that, Santana? I find this odd mix of tough and tender so compelling. AY!
I’m international like my fuckin Visa
swag on Easter, wrist on freezer
bitch on diva, waist on heater
lungs on reefer, pockets on pizza.
• Freeway, “Hear the Song.” Nothin special about this verse, but hey, did you know Freeway's real name is Leslie?! Teehee.
Yo, say hello
to Mr. Aint Gon' Be Shit
get a job, get your kids somethin' for Easter
knowin’ I just came home aint got nothin to eat with
bitch outta line, ho been drove me outta my mind
she like, I shoulda knew before I lay down and slept with him
now she wish that she could sleep with him
• Snoop, “Pay for P---y” (Big Pimpin' Delemond). Snoop during the No Limit years, I sometimes forget, was pretty fresh. “Lay Low”? C'MONNN. Also, Nathaniel Dogg, sorry about the stroke, but I don't miss you and your horrible vocal stylings. That said, I'll still listen to “Lay Low” 6 more times by the end of today.
Remember that Easter Sunday
It was so damn sunny
We didn't get no Easter clothes, candy, or Easter bunny
Yeah, daddy fucked it up
Rollin' dice with the boys
Yeah n---as pay for p---y
Whether it's at the titty bar
Or outta the car.
• E-40, “Why They Don’t Fuck With Us.” I literally, swear to God, have a conversation and/or say something glowing/complimentary about E-40 at least once a day. The Ballatician, you guys. Luh the way he puts it on me.
Next tape, they can't trace the calls
I change numbers, like a playa changes draws
I'm having money, money long stretch like a bungee
when he use to come around ask the Easter bunny
(Tell me do you know E-40)
bet you the players say that's the homie
you liable to find me on the ave on the main drag
or on the corner sippin 'gnac out of a brown paper bag
• Mos Def, “Do It Now.” Produced by one of the Bush Babees, this just sounds like youth and happiness and hope. Plus there's a nice "What a gwaan" courtesy of Busta.
From east west north and south, I got joints for all of those
heavy aquatic water flows keep them on they toes
tell them thugs that wanna be CEOs to be de-robed
'fore I wear your little dumb ass out like Easter clothes.
• Redman, “J.U.M.P.” 1. Reggie's just awfully adept at wordplay; 2. I can never say no to a New Jack City reference.
Half my brain is still experimentin
Doc already gone before the X kick in
yeah, I want my cut like G-Money
stickin the Easter Bunny for sneaker money
now how many muh'fuckers out there
is high - make some noise...
• Wu-Tang, “Rules” (Rae). “How the fuck did we get so cool, man?” - Meth. (Sorry, that's all I got for now.)
Order drinks, all real n---as order your minks yo
we got the fitteds on, lookin all fink
daddy everybody get money from now on
payday flash Visas livin like, Easter e'ryday
don't fuck Benz, rather a 430
that shit that float through water, eyeball come up, drop birdies.