Thursday, April 22, 2010

Jay-Z | 'Off That' Issues and Concerns

08 Off That (Feat. Drake)

Don't get me wrong here, I consider myself a pretty big Jay fan both as a musician and a business man. Jay's a renaissance man that didn't just beat the odds by leaving Marcy Housing Projects behind but the fact that he has since gone on to make Forbes Celebrity list. Think about that for a second. He is a musical genius, his track record proves it and his entrepreneurial endeavors support the fact that he knows how to make serious money whether off of CEO salary, sports team ownership, or his Armadale Vodka.

I have talked to a lot of people about The Blue Print 3 and most times I have been met with mixed emotions. I personally enjoyed it. In fact I had it going all this week on my drive to work. One of my favourite tracks, no make that musical arrangements, is 'We Off That'. Produced by Jerome Harmon and unfortunately Timbaland (or as my mom calls him "weird eyes" - watch any video and you'll understand). Anyways the track features a catchy beat and a Drake chorus but when it comes to lyrical content I think Jay might have been a bit lost. Or confused about what he still likes. I get the concept: Jay's a trend setter and well ahead of the curve and we the average person are all lusting after his sloppy seconds (which may be true). Listening to these particular lyrics though I had to laugh.

Welcome to the Future,
Blue Print 3
Ay count me in
Find me a nice soft place to land
I'm so high
Find me a place to land,
Yeah right there,

Issues and Concerns: Yes you were high when you jotted down these lyrics.


I'm so tomorrow,
The Audemars are yesterday,
Which means your on time delay,
So even if i slow it doooown,
My sound is fast forward, hold up

Issues and Concerns: Audemar Piguet is a well respect and expensive Swiss watch maker founded in 1875 by a 23-year-old Jules-Louis Audemars and 21 year old Edward-Auguste Piguet. And for you HBO fanatics it was the watch that Ari Gold receives as a promo gift from John Ellis (the fictional chariman of the parent company that owns Warner Bros). My first concern is that the brand has with stood the test of time so they must be doing something right. I mean they have been selling high end watches for over 125 years and if memory serves correct, which it does, reached out to Jay in 2005. They felt that no other artist had contributed so much in a 10 year period and wanted to mark the occasion with an anniversary wristwatch. Jay accepted and co-designed the commemorative piece with 100 timepieces being produced including stainless steel, pink gold and platinum versions (LiquidMag). Maybe Jay didn't feel the brand was relevant today and that $40,000 wristwatches are rubbish, but I don't understand how you can toss a brand under the bus that has nothing but the outmost respect for him. A company that has understood his impact on the music industry and honored him for it. I mean the Geneva based company even donated a portion of proceeds from the watch sales to Jay's S. Carter Scholarship Fund.


I'm just a runway show
But I wear this on my plane in my runway clothes,
Cashmere sweats they come out next year
But these my last year sweats,

Issues and Concerns: Now I will give credit where credit is due. Jay does have good style. But if I am not mistaken Rocawear was his baby that he was at the helm for for 8 years. It made $700 million in sales a year. To good to let go as Jay oversees the marketing, licensing and product development. But his Cargo Pants (featuring lower leg zip vents) are 40% off and I don't think anyone outside of my grandpa wears cargo pants anymore and I don't think that is by choice.

Secondly, were cashmere sweats ever relevant? I mean maybe for women who shop at Neiman Marcus but I think everyone is off those because they are marked down to $58. Maybe some designers had a little pow wow and decided they could make a push to fool us but we were never on that and if you were on that - someone should scissor kick you upside the head.

And my hoe so sick, your new chick can't f-ck with my old b-tch,
And you know this sh-t,
I’m professional, they novices,
I just may let you borrow this,
This the Blueprint n-gga follow this,
This what what tomorrow is,
Welcome to tomorrow b—–tch,

Issue and Concerns: Now I know Jay loved his Mother very much. Judging by "November 4th" off of the Black Album its evident family was and is important to Jay. But if I refered to my ladyfriend as a hoe I would have another thing coming from Mary and I assure you it is not good.

[Drake - Chorus]
Whatever you about to discover we off that
You about to tell her you love her we off that,
Always wanna fight in the club and we off that,
But you can’t bring the future back,
Ya’ll steady chasing the fame we off that,
Oversized clothes and chains we off that,
N-gga still making it rain and we off that,
Cos you can’t bring the future back,
Tell n-ggas top get off me,
Cris we off that,
Timbs we off that,
Rims we off that,

Issues and Concerns: Man the chorus is loaded with concerns and I am not sure if Jay or Drake is to blame. So here is a quick break down. Regarding the oversized clothes and chains. I assume Jay was talking about Jesus piece like chains and not hotel chains or clubs persay. Cause if he was I am pretty sure there was talk of a J-Hotel chain and I would consider six 40/40 locations as a chain. And we know he isn't off that cause he just hit Big Papi with a $5 million lawsuit for 40/40 infringement. As for the chains that might appear around your neck I will get to that in a moment. Second up, thanks to a nice analysis from our friends at Complex if anything we would think Jay was addicted to rims. And if he is off rims I am concerned for his mental state of mind and I quote - "The next time you see the homie and his rims spin Just know my mind is working just like them (the rims that is)". Third thing up is the Timbs concern. I personally think they make some great footwear. And I don't think I'm alone. As of today Timberland stocks were at a 52 week high closing 2.6% above yesterdays closing and 59.1% since September 2009. Since when did Jay not like making money? On top of that Timberland is or was owned by Iconix the parent of Rocawear. This is so confusing. The only rational explanation is he meant producer TImbaland and with that I will agree. Oh and that photo above was taken a couple days ago at Coachella - oversized clothes (we off that) and Timbs (we off that).


Yeah We off that is you still on that,
If you still making money cos we still on that,
This ain’t black versus white my n-gga we off that,
Please tell Bill O Reilly to fall back,
Tell Rush Limbaugh to get off my balls,
Its 2010 not 1864 ,
Ah yeh we come so far,

Issues and Concerns: Surprisingly this is where I, for a moment, have no issues. You confirm my suspicion that you still enjoy counting your stacks. We off racism, agreed. Bill O'Reilly and Rush Limbaugh were out of line with their comments. So let's further the movement of getting of racism and eliminate the Nbomb.

So I drive around town hard top and its off
Ah and my tribeca loft with my high brow art
And my high yellow broad
Ah and my dark skin sis and my best white mate
Say whats up to Chris,
Ah, hows that for a mix,

Issues and Concerns: Here is where Jay doesn't have any issue. He is enjoying the finer things in life. His hard top off, Tribeca loft, high yellow broad (high yellow is a term coined at the end of the 19th Century for very light skinned African Americans), his sister and best white mate Chris. So if you are considering getting a hard top, Tribeca spot, dating a light skinned beauty like Beyonce or getting a white friend named Chris don't do it cause you just discovered it so Jay's about to be off that. Looks like I am about to lose a lot of friends.

Got a black president,
Got green presidents,
Blueprints in my white ipod,
Black diamonds in my Jesus piece, My God,
Ah we aint tripping off that,
Its a Benetton ad, n-gga been up off that

Issues and Concerns: Jay we be off white iPods those are so 2001. And Jay led me to believe earlier that he was not interested in chains but he has black diamonds in his Jesus piece? But yes the Benetton Ad's were whack.

I dont give a fidduuck, abiddout the widday,
You used to move, what you used to do,
And I dont give a fidduuck abiddout the b-tches
That you used to screw
What your future do,
And we don’t really care what you used to say,
Unless that affects your future pay,
I'm on the practice field running two a day,

Issues and Concerns: A lot of people had a lot of important things to say over the course of history that didn't generate and future pay. And if he is on the practice field running two a day's he has a great athletic work ethic. Maybe this is a metaphor. I heard these are a large part of most rap songs these days.

So I don’t drop the ball when its threw my way,
So I don’t a fidduck abiddout the sh-t that
You probably did,
Who you probably is,
The only time I deal in past tense
Is I’m past rims,
And i’m past tints,
If you driving it i drove it,
You got it cos i sold it,
You copped it and I bought it back,
And we don’t give a fidduck n-gga we off that.

Issues and Concerns: I have no more issues with Jay instead I have issues that I made supper over 2 hours ago and still haven't eaten it. So Jay this is the only track that had me a bit taken I wish you nothing but continued success. And if you haven't checked out the Blue Print 3 yet, heaven forbid, I highly recommend it.