columns: According to My Sources


Music, Watch – The Lost Tapes Part II

By a Gossiping Bitch on March 17th, 2005

Some of you are probably wondering what’s up with the delayed reviews featured in the last two editions of Music, Watch. I apologize. Next time I’ll try to make sure all the free content you enjoy is more up-to-date, you greedy sluts. Enjoy.

falcon5 – Planet Rock
falcon4 – Heat Rock
falcon3 – Pet Rock
falcon2 – Prog Rock
falcon1 – Cop Rock

“Drop It Like It’s Hot”

Snoop - Drop It Like It's Hot

I can’t front, some of my favorite videos were the Hype-popularized white background joints: The “Flava In Ya Ear” remix? Check. “Leflaur Leflaur Eshkoshka”? Check. Brandy’s “I Wanna Be Down” remix? Man, even Yo-Yo was looking right. Well, chalk one up for Snoop. It always helps when the actual song is dope and thankfully the Neps hook your man up with the not-so-distant cousin of “Grindin”. The majority of the video is really just Snoop and Pharrell dancing around but somehow, it works. And can we talk about Pharrell for a minute? I think dude has reached Outkast status, by which I mean no matter what he does, people just accept it as cool completely overlooking how gay it is. Dude looks like a junior in high school, refuses to let go of the whole trucker hat thing and is now referring to himself as “Skateboard P”? Are you For Real? Can you see Nas making “hand plant” and “air defakey” references and getting away with it? God’s Son would be crucified, fer sure. Regardless, superimposed behind Skateboard P are a giant yacht and a Rolls Royce tilted on two wheels like Arnold and Danny DeVito were chauffeuring that shit. Is riding on two wheels the new hotness? Man, I’ve been looking for an excuse to bust out my Dyno and get my bunny-hop on. Oh, and then right when that keyboard part cuts in The Asian Neptune, fresh from Radio Shack, makes his three second cameo acting like he’s playing it on a mini-Casio. Ok, playtime is over – back to the studio with you, The Asian Neptune. There’s a few product placement shots of note in this video, my personal favorite being the blinged out “Star Trak” iPod – who exactly is the target market for this shit? The upscale train rider? The homosexual cowboy technophobe? On to Snoop’s verse where he just can’t resist using “izzle” at the end of eight successive bars – I seriously doubt he’ll ever get through a verse without it anymore. It’s kinda like Biz spelling his name or Big L working “fag” into every verse — not only expected, but accepted. He also brags about how he wears his “own clothes” which puts to rest all those nasty rumors about him and Warren G wardrobe sharing. With one and half pair of pants, you ain’t cool, is right. Thankfully our Dogg is rocking what looks to be a bearskin rug and two watches like some ghetto-fab Parker Lewis which more than makes up for the lazy rhymes. Peppered throughout the second half of the clip are shots of various females bumping, grinding, and trying hard as hell to get down that mouth click sound on the beat so they can lip-synch it. And I swear some of them are dancing on some leftover set pieces from “Vivrant Thing”. And there’s also a creepy kid hitting a bass drum and I can’t tell if it’s a boy or a girl.


“Breathe, Stretch, Shake”

Mase - Breathe, Stretch, Shake

Breathe. Stretch. Shake. Let it go. Breathe. Stretch. Shake. Let it go. Aside from being a surprisingly accurate description of my daily wake up and take a shit morning routine, it’s the chorus to the latest street banger by everybody’s favorite comeback kid, Mase. This beat sounds like something Foxxy Brown turned down in 1998 for sounding a little too crossover. The video finds Mase up to his usual antics which include, but are not limited to: dancing like a flamboyantly homosexual 7th grader, cheesing for the camera, and my personal favorite, running away from some sort of dollar bill tornado (because he doesn’t chase the money, the money chases him — please, Mase, don’t hurt ’em!), all the while giggling and looking like a wee girl who’s being run down by a boy with cooties. Mase even goes so far as to resurrect the infamous Shiny Suit Shot but it’s gonna take more than that to fool me into thinking it’s the good old days. This video is on some decidedly non-Bad Boy circa ’99 low budget shit — when you break it down, it’s just a whole lotta indoor dancing on a soundstage with like two backdrops. They tried to get clever with the whole black and white color scheme but it just looks like they shot this in between Cover Girl commercials. Mase takes a page from Missy Ellifat’s book and hires a pair of multi-culti dancing kids, a white boy and asian girl, to really cut across demographics and make your girlfriend (if you had one) feel “down”. She’ll squeal in delight. Diddy pulls one of his “I’ll yell all over your track but I will not appear in your video” moves which was probably a good idea, because this clip is just a mess top to bottom. Mad props, though, to the actor who displayed some ill versatility as both the host at the makeshift Mr. Chow’s who refuses to let Mase pay for his meal and as Mase’s friend from Singapore. Grindin’.


Dem Franchise Boyz
“White Tees”

Dem Franchise Boyz - White Tees

Well, you knew this was gonna happen. A song about those XXXXXL white t-shirts/nightgowns that the kids have been wearing for a minute now. In all honesty, I’m surprised it took this long. What’s not surprising is that a bunch of scrub rappers from the South were the ones to make it happen. With record labels looking for the next Crunk superstar they’re pretty much signing anyone with gold fronts and a drawl. But then again, where would Music, Watch be without idiots like this? Probably outside getting some exercise. Perish the thought…We kick this clip off with some dude with a freakishly high voice impersonating a newscaster mentioning how it’s gonna hit 100 degrees or something or other and that’s the exact point where any semblance of a plot this video had disappears. As I’m sure you figured out by now, this song is about white tees and the various things people do in said tees and there’s your chorus and by default, your song. I did find it interesting that they mention they “count change” in their white tees — apparently Dem Franchise Boyz haven’t heard of Dem Coinstar Machines. Eight cents on the dollar, yo! The video is lots of shots of, well, people in white tees. Old people, young people, skateboarders, white trash, some dude riding around on an ATV in an abandoned lot (and he is just riding around and not doing any retardedly dangerous tricks for the camera — not exactly Ruff Ryderz material) and so on and so forth. What I do love is that because this is such a low-budget clip, the girls featured in the video are actually neighborhood skanks as opposed to video hos which had me reminiscing about those great Cash Money videos of old. The ladies all have their white tees rolled up in various skin-revealing incarnations that I have yet to see in those “The Touch, the Feel” ads. Closing things out is a great shot of an abandoned 1983 Chevy Celebrity that somebody spray painted “white tees” on in what looks to be the graffiti-style I perfected in the fourth grade. One time I wrote “FUCK”.


Lil Romeo
“My Cinderella”

Lil Romeo - My Cinderella

I can’t help but shake the feeling that “The New No Limit” will end up just like “The New and Untouchable Death Row,” but you gotta give ’em credit for trying. Next up is P’s son to his father, and whore to his pimp, Lil’ Romeo. Anytime a song starts off with the words “Mr. Cannon on the beat” you know you’re in for a good time. Nick, hot on Primo’s heels, flips the chorus from Shai’s “If I Ever Fall In Love” and does a great job of lip-synching it throughout the video while gyrating behind Romeo. Hey, it rocked the junior high schools once – let’s see if it can do it again! Speaking of Junior High, this video finds Romeo maxin’ and/or relaxin’ in class while lots of chicks (even the white ones — don’t wanna make those Nebraska girls feel like he’s unattainable) that look to be about twenty-five make lots of cute faces at him. And then the teacher, who I could’ve sworn was Tatyana Ali (sans Peter and Tariq) starts making eyes at him, too. I think we can all relate to that one. Cut to Romeo outside chillin in front of some sort of suped up hot-rod go-cart, painted flames and all, that looks like was some sort of leftover from Wacky Races. He also mentions his “Maybach” while pointing directly at the hot-rod — you’re not fooling anyone, holmes. Well, school’s out now and our hero decides to hit up the b-ball court nattily dressed in a get-up reminiscent of Hammer circa The Funky Headhunter. Hate to break it to you Romes, but that outfit ain’t all good. Aiiiiiiiiiight? Naturally he’s the best one on the court — so good in fact that he gets lots of impressive textbook layups with nobody defending him. Kudos to Romeo for not dunking, though. Fundamentals may not impress the ladies but it’s the only way the NBA will get its shit back together and he knows it. And closing it out is probably the strangest shot in the video: Romeo singing with a group of kids that look to be dressed in construction paper — and by “kids” I mean people like two years younger than he is. I think they were going for that whole Nas “I Can” thing but it doesn’t work unless there’s a significant difference in age – maybe him rapping in front of a day care or some shit would’ve been the move. Or maybe just kicking it with pregnant women.


“My Boo”

Usher - My Boo

We kick things off with some sort of club shot featuring Ursh cavorting about in a roomful of models and some whitey fem-dj who I’m probably supposed to know but I don’t. So then…uh…then he…aw fuck it, Alicia Keys’ limo driver is ‘C’ from A Bronx Tale! I shit you not. My main man Lillo Brancato Jr. is straight up Driving Miss Keys. How’s he gonna get played like that? Burn, Hollywood burn. OK, back to the video…the camera pulls back to reveal Ush chilling on his couch simply watching himself and a roomful of models. Sneaky! The bulk of the video is a lot of back and forth shots of Ursh and Alicia singing in their respective hotel rooms but, seriously, dude was in like Renaissance Man and killed it as Samy Saxo in The Real Deal and now he’s taking bit parts in R&B videos? That’s fucked up. Yo, am I the only one that thinks Alicia Keys looks like she has Down’s Syndrome? Think about it. And seeing her grind around on her bed trying to look all sultry like is pretty disturbing — she’s kinda like a sexy android that you feel a little wrong about being attracted to. So Ush and Keys are sangin’ away while they get dressed and then leave their hotels rooms on their way to rendezvous with each other in Times Square. This is where Lillo comes in looking like Alfred Pennyworth to drive Keys to the spot. They even have like a two second close up shot of his face which is either there to give him some shine or just to rub his nose in it – I can’t call it. I understand mob movies aren’t what they used to be but there’s gotta be more parts out there for Colombian actors with a knack for passing as Italians — what about My Big Fat Greek Wedding? Is there a sequel in the works? My man has got the chops for Greek, too. Trust me. Usher decides to walk and almost gets hit by a cab while crossing the street, which serves no purpose, but if Frankie Coffeecake was driving it that shit would’ve been bananas. So Usher and Alicia finally meet and stand close together and sing and look super uncomfortable doing it. These two have less chemistry than Phys Ed majors (zing!). They stick to nuzzling each other but not kissing which leaves them looking more like horses than anything else. I’m assuming Lillo is sitting in the car watching the entire thing wondering where he went wrong. I’m guessing it was the Adventures of Pluto Nash guest spot, but that’s just me.

falcon4 *

* Anger Falcon added in symbolic gesture of support for Lillo Brancato Jr aka “Lil’ Bra”. Stay strong.

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