Friday, January 30, 2009

Newly downloaded: "They Reminisce Over You" by Pete Rock and C.L. Smooth




I visited a blog a few days ago. I forget which one, but the blogger had titled a post "When They Reminisce Over You," which got me thinking about this old cut by Pete Rock and C.L. Smooth. I downloaded it from iTunes last night. (This is how iTunes gets me. I have no impulse control.)

I've said before that hip hop was never really my thing, but nearly everyone of my generation (X) has some hip hop in the soundtrack of their lives. (This was never clearer to me than earlier this week when I sat talking about music with some fellow Xers. My buddies are white, Midwestern suburbanites, but they were opining about old school rap like black, Brooklyn hip hop heads.) "They Reminisce Over You" had an infectious track and lyrics that spoke to the pain of being the child of teenaged parents, but also alluded to fondness for a strong, close-knit extended family--a "village," including mother, grandfather, aunts and uncles, who can guide such a child to adulthood.

The beats of this track got your head bobbing, but the words pointed to introspection and reflection. Oh, for the days when rap was about something...

I reminisce for a spell, or shall i say think back
22 years ago to keep it on track
The birth of a child on the 8th of October
A toast but my granddaddy came sober
Countin all the fingers and the toes
Now i suppose, you hope the little black boy grows, huh
18 years younger than my mama
But i really got beatings cause the girl loved drama
In single parenthood there i stood
By the time she was 21, had another one
This one's a girl, let's name her pam
Same father as the first but you don't give a damn
Irresponsible, plain not thinking
Papa said chill but the brother keep winking
Still he won't down you or tear out your hide
On your side while the baby maker slide
But mama got wise to the game
The youngest of five kids, hon here it is
After 10 years without no spouse
Momma's gettin married in the house
Listen, positive over negative for the women and master
Mother queen's risin a chapter
Deja vu, tell you what i'm gonna do
When they reminisce over you, my god

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