Sunday, November 18, 2007


Earlier tonight I was prepping for a case, and while reading the Pennsylvania Criminal Code and going over my notes, I found myself listening to some Biggie Smalls (Yes my old ass listens to Biggie).

Usually I can work with music in the background and it doesn't bother me. But then this one song came on and...well I stopped working and started listening to it. I have heard the song before and I always kind of liked it. But tonight, for some reason, I found myself paying attention to the lyrics.

"[RING, RING]('Hello? Aw shit, nigga. What the fuck time is it, man? Oh god damn. Nigga do you know what time it is? Aw shit, what the fuck's goin' on? You alright? Aw, nigga what the fuck is wrong wit you?')

When I die, fuck it I wanna go to hell Cause I'm a piece of shit, it ain't hard to fuckin' tell It don't make sense, goin' to heaven wit the goodie-goodies Dressed in white, I like black Tims and black hoodies God will probably have me on some real strict shit No sleepin' all day, no gettin my dick licked Hangin' with the goodie-goodies loungin' in paradise Fuck that shit, I wanna tote guns and shoot dice All my life I been considered as the worst Lyin' to my mother, even stealin' out her purse Crime after crime, from drugs to extortion I know my mother wished she got a fuckin' abortion She don't even love me like she did when I was younger Suckin' on her chest just to stop my fuckin' hunger I wonder if I died, would tears come to her eyes?Forgive me for my disrespect, forgive me for my lies My babies' mothers 8 months, her little sister's 2 Who's to blame for both of them ('naw nigga, not you')I swear to God I just want to slit my wrists and end this bullshit Throw the Magnum to my head, threaten to pull shit And squeeze, until the bed's, completely red I'm glad I'm dead, a worthless fuckin' buddah head The stress is buildin' up, I can't,I can't believe suicide's on my fuckin' mind I want to leave, I swear to God I feel like death is fuckin' callin' me Naw you wouldn't understand ('nigga, talk to me please')You see its kinda like the crack did to Pookie, in New Jack Except when I cross over, there ain't no comin' back Should I die on the train track, like Remo in Beat street People at the funeral frontin' like they miss me My baby momma kissed me but she glad I'm gone She knew me and her sista had somethin' goin' on I reach my peak, I can't speak,call my nigga Chic, tell him that my will is weak. I'm sick of niggas lyin', I'm sick of bitches hawkin',matter of fact, I'm sick of talkin'. [BANG]"

~~Notorious B.I.G.~~

Damn! A suicide note for an entire generation.

Sometimes it pays to just listen.


Anonymous said...

I remember where I was when I first heard this song. On the train on my way to school. It's been an accompaniment for those tough times we all have every since. It also contrasts perfectly with the first song on his second album. He's talking about a topic no black person has talked about before or since. Great site, been reading recently you tell it like it is.

Anonymous said...

this is the song that wrapped up his album so nicely. at this point in the game, he's not happy with the life he's leading, and there's that certain pathos that makes the crack sales and the lives of the black males around him so real. It's the difference between "life after death" and "ready to die." yes, there's a celebration in the second album, but it's like he forgot to tell everyone just how ugly and unglamorous his life on the street was and how no one really wants to be there.

dope ass song ...

guerreiranigeriana said...


Donald said...

The Hate U Give Little Infants Fucks Everybody!
Thug Life. Baby!

Anonymous said...

Songs like this one from Biggie is why I still listen to old-school hip hop. Like it or not, it says what life is like for some of us...I don't want to forget.

Anonymous said...

If this Negroe had rapped about the so-called noble gases, the non-metals, and metals; in other words the periodic table of atoms.

Would you Punk Negroe Dogz have bought his CDz and listened to and memorized his lyrics, lines, and rhymes? Reminisce, too?

The olde blues singers were rappers, they rapped about life, its hardships, its pleasures.

While true, that the old blues men and women did not rap about the hardships of chemistry, calculus, physics, of getting through high school, and college; they did not glorify the debasement of the Negroe people.

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field negro said...

"The olde blues singers were rappers, they rapped about life, its hardships, its pleasures."

How about that?

Thanks 3baas, I will link you as soon as I get home off the plantation.

Anonymous said...

FN, I've been reading your blog for a while, I must say that im a fan.

This is one of my favorite songs ever. I remember it was scary to listen to untill I got older lol. To bad 90% of whats out is bullshit now.

Christopher Chambers said...

It does pay to listen to pain. He's a poet and I fight the Booker Rising types who just peg him as a big fat scumbag whom morons turned into a star. What was Elvis in the the end? (then again, I saw a cool Elvis movie on TV today--he was, get this, a doctor in the Hood and was trying to bone a post Dick Van Dyck Mary Tyler Moore, but she was a nun and, well, nevermind...).

That said, the tragedy of suicide is lionizing (or canonizing) the person and the mindset that produces the psychosis, and trust me suicide is a pyschosis. Yeah he's tellign it like it is, but "it is" sucks, and must be rejected utterly. besides, he was starting to make money and had NO NEED to wallow in that mindset and lifestyle. Which comes full circle to making the "suicide" of himself and a generation now and then so tragic and utterly useless.

The key is not telling the depressed person to "persevere." The key's telling them to fight because there are things worth fighting for. Nihilism and fatalism just brings a self-fulfilling prophesy, and after a while, no one will give a shit. When Chris Rock jokes "Them two niggahs [Big and Tupac] got shot" it has a cruel resonance...

Happy Thanksgiving, and be glad you aren't a mutha-fing barrister in Pakistan, Field. As I said on my blog, with friends/allies like these, who needs al Qaida?

Dark & Stormy said...

Great post FN. I'm a new reader and have mad respect for your blog hustle. Biggie was a very talented MC AND lyricist. Definitely a waning characteristic among new skool hip-hop artists.

brightstarr said...


Anonymous said...


brotherkomrade said...

I wonder why I don't care about anything NSangoma says?

Wait...who was I talking about?

Christopher Chambers said...

Field--by the way I always liked Ramsey down here in DC. The politicians and social workerswouldn't cut the man some slack. He had the right approach: save the young brothers you can salvage, kill the knuckleheads who just refuse to do right. Protect the taxpayers and children. It's not complicated! It was he who said put British-style cameras up. It was he who said folks needed to quit the "stop snitching crap."

PS Brotherkomrade, as much as you decry nsangoma (which I still maintain means "sorceror" or "witchdoctor") his views are going to predominate if we don't stop whining and blaming white folks and start licking the asses of the knuckleheads who are destroyin lives for all of us...

Dirty Red said...

Damn Field,

Biggie really said it huh. I can't speak for everyone here, (especially nsagoma) but I swear I feel like that some times. Life sure knows how to throw you some bullshit. Anyway, Biggie is one of my all time favorite artists. This was a great post.

Anonymous said...

"his views are going to predominate if we don't stop whining and blaming white folks and start licking the asses of the knuckleheads who are destroyin lives for all of us..."

Chris Chambers: If anybody has a right to complain, it's black folk. But i'll tell you a secret: Some of us actually get off our asses and try to clean up the shit that white people and their institutions have defecated all over our communities.

I just came from a meeting where blacks and whites are trying to do something about the violence our kids have to deal with each day so the Biggies of the future won't feel the need to sing songs about Mac 10's and suicide. Except for one white guy, one hispanic guy and some white nuns from the monastery nearby, everyone else were black males. But you won't hear about it, because the only thing newsworthy about us here in Minneapolis is when we kill each other, the younger the better.

But just because we complain, it doesn't follow that we're not doing anything. You just don't hear about it.

Christopher Chambers said...

Oops...typo. I meant [K]icking the asses, not licking.

That's great. That's wonderful. That's beyond admirable. But you just sounded like you were yes, WHINING, Mac. I could give a f-- about what white people have defecated. Again, I think of them the same way I think of bacteria and viruses. They do what they do. My job is to try my damnest not to get infected. So when you get angry, get angry at the young men pulligng the trigger. They are not mindless zombies nor are they innocents who cannot be held accountable for their actions. Like whitey jack Nicholson said in The Departed, "I don't want to be a product of my environment. I want my environment to be a product of me." Now, Scorsese and the screenwriters were very cagey in the place of that line within the script and the initial montage opening the film. The upshot is very simple and you don't even have to read between the lines. The difference between white criminal scumbags like him, and brothers doing the same, is that the latter make excuses and rely on the enabling concern of others who take their plight as a sort of cross: they can't help themselves, they have no meaningful choices. Jack's saying "Bullshit." You always have a choice in being a thug, a gangster, a murderer. So hen you make that choice, revel in it. Be PROUD of it as a sort of vocation. Don't say hey I'm a product of my environment, so if the enviornment had changed, I'd be Bill Gates or Jack Welch or Mark Cuban! Very interesting allegory for "real life."

That you are doing what you do, Mac, is great. But it doesn't have a thing to do with the issue at hand, and that's young sociopaths who couldn't walk straight if the streets of Minneapolis or DC or anywhere were paved with gold, and every hip hop theme--including Biggie's-- was one of sugarplums. Save the ones who want to be saved. Save the little children (save from their parents if need be). And tell the rest there's only bu so much room on the Ark. Once those doors close, you drown, so you better goddamn straighten the f-- up and climb aboard, 'cause we aren't going to listen to your moans and cries when the waves come just as we'll ignore your "I am hard" or I need to have babies because it shows I'm loved speeches...

We're facing an America where our choice of leaders might just boil down to Rudy Giuliani and Hillary Clinton, and if that doesn't depress any intelligent person, I don't know what will. We as African Americans, therefore, do not have the luxury of a lot accomodations of our own folks any more. We're in a war for survival. We'll lose if half our soldiers are more interested in murdering each other and acting trifling or ignorant or ghetto or bamma. Sorry for that cruelty. Makes me sad, too. Come to my blog if you wish to discuss as Field's heard me rant on this before.

Woozie said...

Intensity! What, no audio file to go along with the lyrics? That's okay man, I see how it is...

That Girl Boo said...

"Damn IT"

OKAY MAYBE I'M A BIT TO OLD SCHOOL, BUT TO ME THAT'S SOME OLE BULL SHIT, IT'S POISON TO THE MIND. AS A TEEN I TOO LISTENED TO TRASH, but now that I'm older that's exactly what the stuff is "trash". A YOUTH WITH A feeling of worthlessness cares about no ones lives. Every damn day we New Negros see, know of, or hear about young black males killing, or being killed, my question is when will we ever stop bumpin, shakin our heads, and buts to the beat?

Francis Holland said...

I often feel as The Notorious B.I.G. describes in this song. In fact, I was talking about it just this week with A.A.P.P. I think I'll commit suicide right now by posting a link here to my latest piece of autobiographical creative writing: "When Loving a White Woman is Better".

Bang! Oops! I didn't know my lyrical gun was loaded!

field negro said...

chris and mac, nice exchange. But chris, I am with mac on this one. You really are this close **two fingers together** to giving up on your people. It takes work my brotha it takes work.

BTW chris, I am glad I am not in Pakistan my damn self.

that girl boo, you better listen to them because they ain't changing what they are saying. And I know we shouldn't glorify it, but we better listen.

Francis WTF?

I am going to check out that link. And for your sake I hope you are not saying what I think you are saying :)

Anonymous said...

"That you are doing what you do, Mac, is great. But it doesn't have a thing to do with the issue at hand, and that's young sociopaths who couldn't walk straight if the streets of Minneapolis or DC or anywhere were paved with gold, and every hip hop theme--including Biggie's-- was one of sugarplums."

Now who's whining? The point I made is that, although the white media doesn't give say it, some of us still give a damn-- still work to improve the conditions in our communities. Check it: Some of us used to be Biggies, that is, used to sell or take dope, used to think that manhood was making babies. If we weren't Biggies, our older or yonger brother were, or our first cousins. And, through the music of old skool hip hop like Biggie, we can tap into that period of time, connect with the little Biggies and help them come out of their despair and on a different path.

That's not whining. That's complimenting brothas ans sisters who are in the field, literally and figuratively. I only do it part-time. I'm talking about people who do this every day. I'm talking about heroes. They don't get out of an escalade, run fingers through their perm and then hog the mike and talk shit. They listen to the Biggies then do what they can to help them, day in and day out.

If you can't get past your just anger to see the good as well as the bad stuff that's going on in black communities, you'ill never have a balanced view of black people or black communities. Blessings.

Anonymous said...

Mac. I could give a f-- about what white people have defecated. Again, I think of them the same way I think of bacteria and viruses. They do what they do. My job is to try my damnest not to get infected.

When I see shit like this, I wonder why I even read this blog? As a white dood from Canada I see a comment like this and say to myself "this is racism". Not every white person is the enemy of black people.


Anonymous said...

"As a white dood from Canada I see a comment like this and say to myself "this is racism". Not every white person is the enemy of black people."

Being a white guy from Canada, I presume you don't know White America's racism in all of its brutality and nuances that visit us much too often and often make us angry to the point where we occassionally make disparaging generalize about all white people.
Please forgive us for being human.

If you did know white racism here, you would know that, when a black person speaks "unjustly" and disparagingly of ALL whites, he or she is overwhelmed with just anger not only at those whites who have offended him or her, but the myriad number of whites who have stood by and allowed such behavior for centuries, either saying they hate niggas or feigning ignorance of racism altogether. Some even feign anger at blacks, saying they, in effect, that blacks are "racist in reverse."

It must be nice to feign anger at people who are justifiably angry just about all the time. It must be nice to arbitrarily write off people who blog here as racist and move on to nicer, sexier blogs where running away from reality is routine.

No security guard following you when you enter a grocery store or a mall. No cop stopping you on the freeway just because you drive a nice car or happen to be a black woman and they've heard other cops say black women are always ready for sex. Nice to be white, sin't it?

Have a good evening.

Anonymous said...

Christopher Chambers, what was the Notorious B.I.G.z position on snitching?

from the rapper C.Rock:

"I HATE n***ers.. I am tired of n-word. I wish they would let me join the Ku Klux Klan. I'd do a drive-by from LA to Brooklyn. You can't have anything valuable in your house. N-word will break in and take it all. Everything white people don't like about black people, black people don't like about black people. It's like our own personal civil war. On one side, there's black people. On the other, you've got n-word. The n-word have got to go. I love black people but I hate n-word. .....

n-word always want credit for some s**t they're supposed to do. They'll brag about stuff a normal man just does. They'll say something like, “Yeah, well I take care of my kids.” You're supposed to, you dumb moth..... “I ain't never been to jail.” Whaddya want? A cookie? You're not supposed to go to jail, you low-expectation-having moth.....! ..I see some black people looking at me: “Man, why you got to say that? It ain't us, it's the media. The media has distorted our image to make us look bad.” Please, cut the sh**, okay? When I go to the money machine at night, I ain't looking over my back for the media. I'm looking for n-word!

Anonymous said...

It's crazy how certain people love bringing up that one Chris Rock routine about black vs. n*****s over and over again as proof of something. It's old and it's tired. No one ever brings up all the other routines Chris Rock does about the ignorance of white people.

His latest commentary on the Presidential election was funny, though.


Maybe the ghetto-glorification of 90s hip-hop was bad, but I've always preferred it to what replaced it--the custom-made-for-white-girls cash-out-and-flaunt-it shit that tops Billboard now. To me, it seems like a soul-less, truth-less version of what Tupac and Biggie were doing, rich crackers doing their best to desecrate the corpse of a potentially powerful Black art (they haven't come close to succeeding, check out Saul William's new, open-release, album if you don't believe me, but they've certainly gotten it off MTV). But reading these comments has me thinking that maybe my opinion is the product of being an outsider, a white hip-hop fan who's always been shielded from any damage that could come from from the promotion of violence. So, those of you who are decrying Biggie and the rest of the mid-90s, is this bling and bitches trend that has replaced it actually an improvement, a sort of bandage stanching the bleeding? Or was my gut instinct correct?

Anonymous said...

Deh troof, hit do be hurtin'; dasn't it, Julie P?

Anonymous said...

I see Stanley Crouch has joined the festivities as a woman. Hopefully the sex change works out for you man

Anonymous said...

NSangoma -

Truth hurts? No. And since you love Chris Rock as much as I do, you'll appreciate this:

Everybody's saying the same thing: "Hillary or Obama?" A black man, or a white woman. It's so HARD to make up my mind! You know, as if it was a SUFFERING contest! And, even if it was, how can you compare the suffering of a white woman to the suffering of a black man?! It's not even CLOSE! I mean, white women burned their bras; black men were burned alive!"

I'm no fan of rap music (the way it is today), but those old school blues songs could get pretty raunchy too. They sang about sex as much as anything.

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