The fate of hip-hop is upon us. On May 4, 2010 after the first week sales of hip-hop albums are announced, we will know if hip-hop is dead or alive. Why? Rapper B.o.B. with iTunes first and third top selling single at the moment will be releasing his album today, April 27, 2010.
B.o.B. has bridged the gap between hip-hop and mainstream popular culture. This album features rappers Eminem, T.I. and Lupe Fiasco, singers Janelle Monae, Bruno Mars and Paramore’s lead singer Hayley Williams, and even a song with alternative rock band Weezer. With all all-star line up reaching all music audiences possible, The Adventures of Bobby Ray offers the listener a little bit of everything.
“Bet I know/ Everything about this game/ Bet I know my role/ But they know when I come to the court/ This is my sport B dot O. B.” raps B.o.B. on the song “Bet I.” However, T.I., fresh from a completed prison sentence, steals the show taking his king of the south mantra to another level.
“I’m balling hard baseline/Bob threw the alley-oop/Bang/coming through this thang/ Like James in the air off the rim/ I hang.” T.I. as the LeBron James of the south brings out the Kobe Bryant-like flow of Eminem on the album as well.
On “Airplanes Pt. 2” Hayley Wiliams from Paramore graces the track with her vocals as well as Eminem pretending he never picked up a pen to and the effects it would have had on his life.
“Now pretend they ain’t just make him angry with this shit/ And there was no one he could even name when he’s pissed at/ And his alarm went off to wake him/ But he ain’t make it to the rap Olympics/ Slept through his plane and he missed it.” Em does a great job at telling us what life would be like if he didn’t have his diligent work ethic.
If you like rock and roll mixed with rap, you will love B.o.B’s attempt at a new genre of music—Rock and Rap. Weezer shows us the magic on the song “Magic.” Want to dance? Turn this song up in the headphones. The only thing it’s missing is Lady Gaga.
With a major co-sign by Lupe Fiasco on “Past My Shades,” Lupe shout outs B.o.B. rapping, “Bobby Ray, you know you got my numbers/ And them deers can’t see us like hunters.”
But with a line-up of features as notable as this album, B.o.B’s debut album—The Adventures of Bobby Ray—looks like the Yankees’ line-up. Let’s just hope that Bobby Ray (better known as B.o.B.) can coach this team to victory. So with the third and top selling song on iTunes, the fate of hip-hop relies on the efforts of this album.
The bottom of the line-up that literally encompasses the adventures of B.o.B’s everyday life really has to pick it up. With songs such as “Fame,” “Higher,” and “Lovelier Than You,” B.o.B. proves that he doesn’t need a set of good features to show his creativity.
This is my last article I will ever write for The GreyHound. I will be pursuing a MFA from Emerson College in the fall of 2010. I will miss having you all as an integral part of the readership of these articles and being such a welcoming audience.
I will continue to preserve the art of hip-hop by writing about the hip-hop culture in regards to fashion, music, news, and much more on my website: http://www.lolitzdo.com
It has really been real, but the Hip-Hop Block column will live on. I would personally like to thank Charles Clark for taking up the task to preserve the hip-hop community in The Greyhound for next year. With that being said, here is what you can look forward to next year.
And again, I love you all—