Black men and white women already share a mutual desire to make sweet, passionate love to one another. Now we have rap music to bond over as well.
The number one song in the country right now is by a white female rapper, and I wouldn’t be surprised if this isn’t an anomaly but rather the beginning of a trend – the TIs have finally found a way to combine my life’s two main obsessions, and really, this country’s two main obsessions, regardless of whether or not they want to admit: white women and rap music.
For once, the Arts section at the New York Times section was actually right about something. They ran a story, at some point during Kwanzaa, about how this song “Tik Tok” by Ke$ha was blowing the fuck up. I skimmed it, on my iPod, while was out somewhere, probably gorging myself on free alcohol at my parents’ house, and it ended up being one of those things where I had to go back a few days later and make sure it really happened: Did the New York Times just run a trend story about how white lady rap is the proverbial new ska, or did I accidentally drink some absinthe?
In just the time in between when I read the story and when my liver started to dry out (temporarily, at least), “Tik Tok” went from being on the come up to being the number one song in the country, knocking Jay-Z and Alicia Keys’ teh ghey show tune “Empire State of Mind” out of the number one spot. In retrospect, I’m surprised the New York Times didn’t go so far as to predict that “Tik Tok” would supplant the Jay-Z song. To think of the hyperbole that could have been wrought from the idea of the most popular song by arguably the most dominant figure in the history of rap music having its ass handed to it by a rap song by a motherfucking white woman. The Times may have been gunshy, after I had to spank them for that story about the producers who crafted the patented Gucci Mane sound, which is of course entirely indistinguishable from say, the Young Jeezy sound, or the sound of any number of other shitty southern rappers. The Eskimos may have 100 different words for snow, but you don’t see a feature about them in the Times world news section, now do you?
To give you an idea of the significance of the feat Ke$ha just pulled, think about this: Jay-Z is the most popular rapper evar. He has more number one albums than the Beatles and Elvis (if not Buhweet) combined. My father, who’s 52, randomly drops Jay-Z quotes in conversation over Christmas dinner. Though come to think of it, my father might be closer in age to Jay-Z than I am. But you catch my drift. The man’s a cultural institution. Jay-Z never had a song of his own top the Billboard Hot 100 until just now. I hadn’t even heard of Ke$ha until a few weeks ago (someone with an understanding of my wheelhouse sent me a link to the video for “Tik Tok,” I didn’t bother to have a look), and now she has a song atop the Billboard Hot 100. They’re basically tied, at least in that regard.
It just goes to show how much easier it is to become that popular, if you look like you’ve sprung from the depth’s of my subconscious and/or my Tumblr. Which is an idea I’ve been aware of for some time now. It first occurred to me when I was in college, when I would have to watch CMT on the reg. It’d be on the huge projection TV in the cafeteria, where I’d be getting my free grub on. I used to hate that shit, until I actually looked up at the screen, then I was obsessed. So many attractive white women. Maybe not dimes, but better-looking than the best-looking women you see on a regular basis out here in the flyover states, especially in rural areas. And I was living in a rural area at the time, so you can imagine my plight as perhaps one of the Internets’ most dedicated appreciators of the female form.
In that sense, it’s hardly any wonder mainstream country music remains as popular as it is (that Taylor Swift album, for example, was the year’s best-selling album, despite the fact that it was released in 2008), when even most people won’t admit to liking it. It’s not like low brow black music, where white writers who should know better go to such great lengths to craft a defense of it. If I had a dollar for every cracka-ass cracka I met – out in the sticks, mind you – who proclaimed to like every genre of music except country, I’d have way more money than I’ll receive to write this post. And yet, CMT seemed to be blaring from every public TV on my college campus, at all times. Somebody bought all of those Taylor Swift CDs, and it probably wasn’t just kids. Let’s face it, people love white women.
Do I like Ke$ha’s song? Of course not. But I don’t like any of the other really popular rap songs either. They might as well be by women I’d like to bang.