Writer Or Biter

Rap wouldn’t be rap if there weren’t the tried and true tradition of snacking on another’s style. It’s been around since the dawn of hip hop time, from Kool Herc using breaks of classic records, all the way down to Drake sampling Coldplay on “Congratulations,” and beyond. Everybody steals: it’s how hip hop works. And the really good thieves end up as high-ranking executives at labels and such. Oh hai Lyor Cohen.

If stealing is about as commonplace as an “Internets model [1],” why are people still up in arms about it? The item du jour of this week is how former underling Peedi Crakk is accusing his former weed owner Jay-Z of swacking his flow from his former running mate Young Chris. Okay, and? Whether he stole it or not (and I’m sure most of the cyber-conglomerati will agree that he did) will that make his retirement portfolio drop in value? Will his supposed pilfering make the oh-so-important street cred that less plausible? Do you think he even cares at this point? The guy is 40 years old, banging a cola bottle shaped, caramel colored, extremely rich, fellow Mason member every couple months to sustain his life force and eating cheese from a country that was probably bombed to high hell decades ago. Why the fuck would he care about “street cred” when his socks cost more than our entire wardrobes? The word “sale” doesn’t even exist in his lexicon. I’m just saying.

It doesn’t stay in rap, either. Hell, Michael Jackson swacked The Beatles’ catalog almost 30 years ago, and he dam near took it with him to his grave. Shit, each time you even think of a Beatles song Michael is getting paid, and he’s not even around to spend it on things like expensive monkey juice pushed off by your favorite rapper (shout out to Ludacris for sending me a bottle of Conjure).

Musical vampirism exists. It’s been around since before we were born, and it’s going to exist far past our deaths. The ones that still care to complain about it are the same ones wishing for a “return of the real,” when the real hasn’t been entirely real to begin with. Once more people understand that, then the entire rapster community can progress further. How? I don’t know. Perhaps less animosity towards others, so when we clown someone like Rick Ross we’re actually clowning his lazy, wonky eye instead of his past life as a stand-in for Carl Winslow.

Think like this: you can’t eat without biting.

[/random thoughts]

[1] Let’s keep it real: if you get butt-ass naked online, you’re nothing more than a cyber-stripper, and you save us degenerates the time and money of going to an actual strip club and partake in some nudie spelunking. Not that I mind that at all, ladies.

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  • Moving Sideways

    “I never made it without biting. Ask Mr. Owl.” ~ Mr. Turtle from the Tootsie Pop Commercial

    • Meka

      ^^^ THIS

  • ben

    waste of sperm…crackhead disgusting human being if you can call that peedi crack, The only time his name is mentioned is when he has jay-z dick in his mouth

  • Worley

    People can use each other for inspiration but copying someone verbatim is straight plagiarism. That sh!t is universally frowned upon in all genres of art. No bueno.

  • these posts are racist

    Agreed. Biting entire lines is plagiarism, unless you’re “big enough to do it…” But learning other people’s flows and building on them or incorporating them or perfecting or even using it, period, is what SHOULD be done. Professors do this all the time. Philosophers do this all the time. That’s the point of progress…why sacrifice greatness in the name of a false perception of “originality”. Aren’t all rappers influenced by someone? Isn’t everyone influenced? I learn and incorporate styles in every area of my life. Indeed, my professional career, practicing law, is centered around the “precedent” and jimmying up “boiler plate” documents. Why the different standard for rap? All genres of music, all disciplines of science, all aspects of life use the techniques, style and work of others in their own body of work. To the extent is redundant or becomes plagiarism, the market will correct it…

  • Teddy

    are those peedi broke tears so bitter in their chemical structure 2 parts salty 1 part hate 9 parts broke (2S1H9B)? not to be confused with beanie or dame tears of a similar chemical make up. also closly related to ll cool j and game tears however the game tear varies the most in structure containing 5 parts stan 3 parts suicidle and 3 parts broke, the ll cool j tear contains 11 parts fell off 3 parts broke and 6 parts bitter salt. another note worthy tear is the dame tear containing 100 parts broke.

    • awesome arsenal

      “pure” broke is hard to come by, especially when about 8 years ago he had no symptoms.

    • now this nigga

      you seem too a little too concerned with other niggas bodily fluids.

  • http://www.twitter.com/classicmaterial @classicmaterial

    *checks huffington post*

    *see pictures of Jay-Z eating breakfast with the Bloomberg and the billionaire Nets owner*

    *forgets when peedi peedi turned back into peedi crakk*

  • El Tico Loco

    Rappers have been biting but biting from classics but with the aim to get the crowd involved that’s what being an emcee is; and classics birth other classics for example “A taste of honey” was in “ladidadi”, “ladidadi” was in “Hypnotize” and I heard a million rappers it seems that start a rhyme with sicker than your average, then there’s Ghostdeini’s bridge, and just about every song I ever heard mos def in that’s how hip hop respects other music.

    On the other hand there’s some bitch ass biting where a not so famous rapper gets a rhyme stolen by a more famous rapper sometimes whole songs. The not so famous or not famous at all does not get the credit they deserve like Crash Crew (girls, girls), or what does Lil Wayne gotta say about Gillie? or Kanye about Icedrake? why those dudes exiled from the game for calling them out for plagliarism? I respect the biting we know than the biting where they think we don’t know.

  • http://www.bboycult.com $yk

    Worley says:

    People can use each other for inspiration but copying someone verbatim is straight plagiarism. That sh!t is universally frowned upon in all genres of art. No bueno.

    ^

  • what

    “Good artists borrow; great artists steal.”

    -No fucking clue

  • zherow

    Buying an artist’s catalouge, sampling a song, doing a cover of song and taking someone’s style are four VERY DIFFERENT things. And besides, if it was the other way around, everyone would be screaming down Young Chris’ throat about being a lame for taking Jay’s style. Either way, Peedi needs to focus on him, Young Chris is doing his thing (Network 2 is out, so give it a listen/download), and still waiting for a good post-retirement album from Jay. Oh, you also spelled “damn” wrong in “and he dam near took it with him to his grave”. Later

  • OG Matt Herbz

    Ask OG Mike Herbz what I think about biting. Oh that’s right, you can’t…he’s dead…because I shot him for biting.

    The real Herbz thinks that if you can build on something, then go for it. If you can turn a hot line into a hot song, you’re building on someone else’s bricks, not stealing their bricks to make your own house. The outcome just better be beneficial to both parties and the listener. But, when you got somebody saying they stole someone’s flow? What the fuck is a flow? Are you known for that flow? Is that flow something that can actually be described well enough that every dude who ever spit isn’t guilty of it?

    “That muthafucka says a line and the end word souds like this–then at the end of the next fuckin line, he rhymed the last word with the word from the first line.”

    Is that ^^ how you define someone’s flow? Get the fuck out of here. Muthafucka Peedi Crakk dropped the “Crakk” from his name because he thought he was about to go commercial…when that fell through, he went back with what he knew–Crakk–but still didn’t drop the “Peedi.” Word to mutha, when I was a youngin’ I used to refer to my dick as my peedy. Don’t ask me how I was supposed to spell it, but it sounded the same, dammit.

    –OG Matt Herbz–

  • SosaChi

    Good one Meka

  • http://www.jamal7mile.blogspot.com Jamal7Mile

    “One of the surest tests [of the superiority or inferiority of a poet] is the way in which a poet borrows. Immature poets imitate; mature poets steal; bad poets deface what they take, and good poets make it into something better, or at least something different. The good poet welds his theft into a whole of feeling which is unique, utterly different than that from which it is torn; the bad poet throws it into something which has no cohesion. A good poet will usually borrow from authors remote in time, or alien in language, or diverse in interest.”

    Eliot, T.S., “Philip Massinger,” The Sacred Wood, New York: Bartleby.com, 2000.

    • http://www.bboycult.com $yk

      ^^^ YEE!

      Yo Mekz I watched you in that DC blog conference drop some uber jewels fam.

      But your XXL blogs release a stench of confusion yo. Where you at? (no Nextel/Boost Mobile)

  • unknown

    Meka, don’t try to sound like someone your not in your editorials. I undestand your new to this but be yourself . Just some friendly advice .

  • ff1one@yahoo.com

    Good Write…even better comments. Ya, the poet dude and all the poet comments sum it up. Nothing new is under the son. If jay could say i go this qoute from biggie or so and so “insert” in his rhymes he would. Jay clearly makes it known who he qoutes. Thas not biting. As far as this flow things, Young chis explantion was on point. I made a comment similar to it yesterday. I’m sure some of you who have livs have been around frineds and came up with some slang and/or good ideas. Jayz just had more power respect and money to get his music out. All these whispers are disloyal to the upmost. But bck to poetry, as a poet, ya u r suppose to study your peers and take it to a new level. Hip hop does that, rap has just blurred the lines btwn everything.

  • caino

    ‘The guy is 40 years old, banging a cola bottle shaped, caramel colored, extremely rich, fellow Mason member every couple months to sustain his life force and eating cheese from a country that was probably bombed to high hell decades ago’

    LOL classic!!! taking over from Bol with these little Gems!

    And l gotta agree with TPAR, everyone is influenced by someone, you just gotta take their ideas and evolve to make it better!! thats how we progress!

  • oskamadison

    The thing that’s ironic about this whole biting issue…I remember Run, I believe, saying that pre-rap records, everyone’s rhymes were basically the same rhyme. When you first started rhymin’ back then, you simply spit someone else’s joints, with the smarter ones substituting their names in the verse to make it seem authentic. As Hip-Hop evolved, so did the art of rhymin’ and gradually it became an art to the point where originality was of the utmost importance. Even if you were wack, as long as you didn’t sound like anyone, you can live, just step your pen game up. So, biting is older than Hip-Hop itself and every “new” idea is an old, repackaged one doomed to meet the same fate time and again.

    That being said, as far as Hov biting Young Chris’ flow (which real heads knew 8 years ago), let me know when we get to the part where I’m supposed to give a shit.

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