I Know It's the Jam, But...

Bloggified by Jake on Wednesday, June 22, 2011

If there is a better example of a song mailing it in than DJ Kool's "Let Me Clear My Throat," I can't think of it.

1. The song is 95% "The 900 Number" by 45 King (also known as "The Ed Lover Dance Song" to viewers of "Yo! MTV Raps" in the early 90's), which is in itself just a looped sample from Marva Whitney's "Unwind Yourself." The rest is the opening horns from "Hollywood Swingin'" by Kool and the Gang. I grant you that hip hop is rooted in sampling, but these are two well-known samples and had been well-known for years before this song came out.

2. Many of the lyrics are "samples," too. While not lifted as an actual recording, lines like "Can I kick it? (Yes, you can!)" and "I'm in love... I'm all shook up," are familiar lyrics from other songs. Hell, even "Let me clear my throat" was one of Ad Rock's most memorable lines on the Beastie Boys' "License to Ill" album.

3. This song was recorded live in a club, so I supposed it's possible Biz Markie was pulled on stage without any warning and asked to freestyle some rhymes on the spot. I hope this is the case, because that's the only excuse I can think to justify the lack of effort on his part to spin a lyrical masterpiece... or even to make any sense. By his third line, he's resorting to making noises ("Ahhhh-uuuhhh-huh-huh. Remember that?") and a moment later, he admits he's not going to worry about saying anything meaningful because the words don't really matter ("Tick tocka. Tick tocka doodle die, no matter what I say, it always comes out fly"). I also really wonder what the comparison that prompted the simile "The ladies in here are like fruit in a cup" was (other than a meaningless line to rhyme with "shook up").
4. Why the hell is this considered a DJ Kool song? Clearly Doug E. Fresh was the only one who really contributed anything. What does Kool need to clear his throat for? It's not like he's saying much other than repeating the same four or five lines ("Here we go now. Here we go now. Here we go now. Here we go now. Here we go now." "Everybody jump. Jump. Jump. Jump. Jump." "Have mercy, babe. I hope ya don't mind.") and shouting out a role call of rappers who apparently had more on their agendas than Doug E. Fresh and Biz Markie that evening. Hell, the crowd has as many lines in this song as DJ Kool does.

0 sarcastic replies:

Subscribe to: Post Comments (Atom)