Friday, November 18, 2011

Ashy Or Classy?!? - Common's "Thug Rap" Song.

I, like most hip hop heads, also used to love Common. No pause necessary. From his debut Can I Borrow A Dollar in the early 90's, dude was one of the purest emcees out, and a true guardian of "the culture". Along with The Roots, Mos Def, and Taalib Kweli, the artist formerly known as Common Sense was one of the few artists purists like me could site as a stock rebuttal when people talked about how cruddy cRap music was.

Fast forward a decade, and Common's now perhaps better known as a Hollywood B-lister who has starred in such movies as Date Night, Just Wright, and Terminator Salvation. Rap-wise, his career took a turn for the worse with the disastrous Electric Circus, but he's seen a revival of sorts in recent years after linking up with Kanye West. Musically, he's far from his "Soul By The Pound" roots nowadays, preferring to make cotton candy tunes that get sold in your nearest Starbucks. Oh yeah, and there was that comical White House episode, which we won't bother to go into here.

While his recent brush up with the Conservative press probably elevated Comm's Q-rating, it probably didn't help his ego to be defended so vigorously as one of the most non-threatening rappers this side of Young MC. And quicker than you can say "The B*tch In Yoo", Common's back with a new album and new "street single" called "So Sweet" in which he tries to convince you he's (still) Petey Wheatstraw From The Southside Of Chicago.

Boy, where do I begin? Look, I get it. You probably got tired of being labelled as the romantic comedy guy, and wanted to show folks you could still get hardcore if you needed. But this sh*t, well, this is just borderline comedy. Mean mugging in what's probably a $350 designer skullcap? Riding on the back and top of a garbage truck? Menacing dark skinned Caribbean "thugs"? Machetes? Seriously, dude?

While I'll admit I liked the not-so-subliminal Drake diss, all the wayward cursing was just a little too much. So was calling dude "Sweet", which is, well, a homosexual slur, and that doesn't go over too well in Hollyweird. I'm already counting the days until Common has to issue a tearful, Tracy Morgan-style apology. You just know it's coming.

Sorry folks, this is Ashy. Common, please stick to acting. Leave the fake thuggery to Rick Ross.

Question: Ashy Or Classy?!? Is Common's attempt to go back to "the hood" a convincing acting gig, or is this downright Comm-ical?!?

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