Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Lil' B And The Weirdness Of Internet-Only Fame.

One of the weirdest things about the internet is that web-centric fame sometimes is completely segregated from mainstream recognition. In short, there's a million and one pieces of pop culture that exist solely on the web. You wouldn't know who Antoine Dodson, or Rebecca Black, or the infamous Bubb Rubb were if you didn't frequent The Internets, as I'm often reminded when I discuss stuff of the sort with my wife, whose rare free time is exclusively spent perusing sites for very expensive shoes. She knows nothing about internet sensation Lil' B, and there's probably a good chance you don't either. Your kids (or nephews) probably do though.

For the clueless (me included), Lil' B is a rapper from the Bay Area who was once in a group called The Pack that had a marginal hit called "Vans" a few years ago. Since then, he's gone solo and makes mixtapes full of largely unlistenable music that lots (and I do mean LOTS!) of people inexplicably actually listen to. He also makes lots of low budget and awful Youtube "music videos" with millions of views. I once long ago did a post about the incredibly terrible "Hoes On My D**k Cause I Look Like Jesus", a song just as hideous as its title would suggest. He also made somewhat of a national story a few weeks back by announcing that his next (since leaked) album would be called "I'm Gay". Hang around any crowd of suburban teens, and his ubiquitous catchphrases like "swag!" and "thank you based god!" will inevitably pop up at some point. All this, for a guy without a successful album, radio friendly single, or mainstream media recognition. Or talent for that matter.

Every 2-3 weeks, a Lil' B song will magically become a trending topic on Twitter, disguised as a title as one of his songs (ie: the deplorable "Wonton Soup"). Last Friday, I happened logged on to find the term "Bill Bellamy" trending. The obvious ("damn, Bill Bellamy's dead?") thought came to mind, until I clicked on the phrase to find out that "Bill Bellamy" was just the latest awful Lil' B song and its accompanying video. Be forewarned, the following video contains lots of expletives and awful rapping.

I'm no Lil' B genius, but I didn't think Bill Bellamy had that many (any?) felonies. It's poorly mixed. There are more b*tches than a dog pound. The lyrics are nonsensical. The bars are poorly structured. The song makes no sense, and is so awful that it's almost brilliant.


I'm a hip hop aficionado, but I don't consider myself a "hip hop is dead!" snob by any means. I listen to lots of LCD rap music. Lots of it. I get the appeal of being able to zone out with an amazing beat as background music while you cut the grass, drive, or write source code. Everything ain't gotta be super lyrical or deep. Sometimes, music is just background noise.

Still, I just don't get the appeal of Lil' B. Do you? Help me out. Maybe I'm just old.

Question: Assuming you've heard of him, what the hell is this guy's appeal? Does the whole concept of Internet-Only fame puzzle you?

Lil B Gets Extra Felonious On "Bill Bellamy" [Baltimore Sun]

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