Wherein unreasonably free time is dedicated to proving Jonah Hill is funnier than you.

Thursday, May 31, 2007

Kanye @ the Epicensor

Back in pre-'Late Registration' 2005, Kanye West almost-apologized for using "the n-word" — henceforth "neighbor,"[1] because I feel stupid typing "the n-word" — in his music by arguing that not using it when dialect so demands just distracts from his message. Yet, judging from the video for (ironically enough) "Can't Tell Me Nothin'," he's capitulated to the current angst over the word "ho." Specifically his third verse has the lines:
How he move in room full of nos
How he stay faithful in a room full of hoes?
Except you won't hear the "hoes" in the official video@≈-1:46[2].

What's really interesting to me is, @≈-0:27 you can hear "neighbor" said very clearly by Young Jeezy.[3] So, basically, Kanye was willing to put the 'neighbor' on the internet and on iTunes (for Free Ninety Nine), but balked at "ho"? I'm too shocked to really evaluate this decision, and what it says about the apparently zero-sum game that is Women v Black People.

What's really meta-interesting to me is: I was going to mention this last week but I couldn't find time, and had sort of assumed somebody else would. I actually came to the ol' blogspot to write something on the pomp-pomo-sity of Kanye sampling a Daft Punk song that was sampling Edward Birdsong, but I was beaten by over a week and nevertheless still felt the urge to write. Luckily, it turns out that nobody else seems as obsessed with music self-censorship as I.[4] No doubt this is derived from my adolescent affection for DMX's ad libs, but that's a story for another time. A proper grad student would actually want to expound[5] on any of these points, but that's because proper grad students write theses.

[1] How did I manage to never write a paper on Lisa Lampanelli?
[2] The mixtape version proves "hos" is indeed the censored word. Also, when will Google add its link-within-a-video feature to YouTube?
[3] Jeezy/T.I./DJ Toomp's "I Got Money" may or may not be the sample upon which "Can't Tell Me Nothin'" is based, which would open the shortest song-to-sample window I've seen since Kanye sampled Alicia Keys's "If Ain't Got You" in order to remix it. How I love recursive loops.
[4] See, again, my Foucauldian analysis of 'I Wanna [Fsck] You.'
[5] To think, had I written this when the blog-iron was hot, I could have beaten Breihan (chronologically, of course — never content-wise)