Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Rappers Who Suck: Baby

I have a hard time looking at Puff Daddy as "Diddy". Scratch that -- I have a hard time looking at Puff Daddy, period. But I have an especially difficult time looking at him as "Diddy". It takes a certain level of pompousness to announce that you must be referred to by a name of your choosing which isn't on your driver's license (unless you choose to legally change your name, like the Ultimate Warrior did), but it takes an even greater level of pompousness to announce that you are changing your nickname. Plain and simple, nicknames are to be chosen by people other than the recipient of the nickname. The only person who gets a pass on this unwritten law is scrappy ex-NBAer Jerome Williams, who labelled himself "Junkyard Dog". But seriously, take a look at the dude...

If this guy doesn't deserve to be known as "Junkyard Dog", then no one deserves anything. Ever. Word to the feather boa.

Of course, rap names are different, because most rappers are expected to live within a persona, one that wouldn't normally come with a given name like Curtis Jackson or Shawn Carter. However, Diddy is not a rap name, because Puff Daddy -- by my definition, at least -- is not a rapper. That's because he uses ghostwriters (the proof is in the Wiki). In other genres of music, where one gets recognition based on their vocal abilities, having people write your songs is a bit more forgivable. But in rap music, you get recognition (for the most part) based on what you write -- if you don't write, you're not a rapper, and Puffy has alluded to/bragged about the fact that he doesn't write. "Don't worry if I write rhymes, I write checks". Remember that? [Due to this, sadly, Puff Daddy will never be the subject of one of these "Rappers Who Suck" posts. But let the record show that I still think he sucks.]

It's not a huge secret that a lot of so-called rappers who are more widely regarded for their contributions to hip hop music away from the microphone -- like Puffy, Dr. Dre and Jermaine Dupri (whose "contributions" don't really extend beyond Kriss Kross and Da Brat) -- employ ghostwriters. One such person who doesn't, however, is Baby, a.k.a. Birdman, the CEO and co-founder of Cash Money Records, and, if you believe everything you read in album titles, Lil' Wayne's "father". How can I tell that Baby, someone who came up largely on the business side of the music industry, doesn't use ghostwriters? Shit, have you ever heard him rap??

To Baby's credit, recording music with an always-improving Wayne has helped a little, and he can always be proud of the fact that he outshined The Clipse on "What Happened To That Boy?"; and though this isn't really related to actual "rapping", he also has the most brilliant album cover ever. But just like I can't see Puff Daddy as Diddy, I can't see Baby as anything above a rapper who sucks -- he's just sucked for too damn long. And with his verse on "Project Bitch", he dug a hole of suckiness FAR too deep for anyone to dig themselves out of. You may have heard the song in question in passing one day, and heard Baby's verse and thought, "Wow, this guy isn't very good." To you, I say this...

Try reading his lyrics (below) to yourself. If you're like me, then by the time you reach the sixth bar (where Baby cleverly rhymes "fuck" with "fuck"), you'll probably be questioning the purpose of Baby's existence, the purpose of your own existence, why rap music isn't as good as it used to be, the meaning of life, and other such things.

"A n***a could catch me re'd up/
Them white folks know the code so we G'd up/
And my Range Rover 4 door be D'd up/
Tattoos and new cars and these project cuts/
Got this n***a bitch I know been wantin' to fuck/
I deal with sluts, ladies, and bitches don't give a fuck/
Project bosses, Weezy say "Respect Us"/
Bitch n***a find me in a 4 door Lexus/
I got a bitch shoot dice, and a bitch that ain't right/
I got a bitch who will front ya work and take ya life/
I got a credit card hoe, a scam type hoe/
A fraud type hoe, like to snort that dope/
A dick suckin pro, a calico hoe/
A real solid bitch out Chicago/
I got a brat type bitch like to whine and shit/
I got a project bitch like to start some shit"