Oh, right. Sarah Palin doesn’t. Could that be why she tweeted in protest against Common’s involvement in Wednesday night’s poetry event at the White House? Last year, I made the exact opposite argument, explaining why the White House was overdue in formally recognizing hip-hop. I also suggested Common as a possible guest.
Yesterday, Common’s critics took to airwaves, zeroing in on a political poem the rapper delivered at a Def Poetry Jam event during the Bush years. But a look at his lyric book shows a much different guy. Here are some lyrics from Common’s five highest-charting songs — some of which posit him as a man of values.
- “Reminding Me (of Sef),” in which he gets nostalgic for the good old days in his hometown of Chicago: “Before these minds got a hold to some drugs/And start thinkin’ they thugs/ We'd be at the Bismarck, and the Racquetball club.”
- “The Light,” in which he builds a romantic relationship with the help of God: “They say the end is near, it's important that we close to the most, high/ Regardless of what happens, on him let's rely.”
- “Come Close,” in which he promotes fidelity and matrimony: “I just want you to know/ Your whole being is beautiful/ I’m going to do the best I can do/ Cause I'm my best when I'm with you.”
- “Go!” in which he gets a little freaky, but far from filthy : “Free love I wanna see/Uh, hot sex in the third degree/Uh, you gettin' served while servin' me/Uh, dirty words encourage me...”
- “Universal Mind Control,” in which he recycles old school hip-hop-isms: “Some pop, some lock, some move robotic/Like cash money, I stay in pocket/You MCs ra-ra-ra rock, don't stop it.”
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