Consumer Guide Album
Notorious B.I.G.: Ready to Die [Bad Boy, 1994]
As a white person in an integrated, how do we say it, nabe, I should breathe a sigh of relief that pithy Christopher Wallace seems content to exploit his own people--"I been robbin' motherfuckers since the slave ship," or, if you prefer, "I be beatin' motherfuckers like Ike beat Tina." As a male person, I should be grateful he doesn't want to pimp my kind either. But because I live a lot farther from the edge, these things don't make me feel better at all--I'm outraged when anyone gets robbed, beaten, or pimped, descendants of slaves especially. Hence I'm not inclined to like this motherfucker. But the more I listen the more I do. Wiping the cold out of his eyes at 5:47 a.m. or pulling his gat as the wrong guy comes down the street, he commands more details than any West Coast gangsta except carbetbagging Ice-T. His sex raps are erotic, his jokes are funny, and his music makes the thug life sound scary rather than luxuriously laid back. When he considers suicide, I not only take him at his word, I actively hope he finds another way.