Ironic use of quotation marks

The other day I heard a rap album.  I am not a fan of “the rap” or “the hip hop”, though I recognized this as being a cut above in terms of quality.  I can’t eschew things that obviously have strong influences from hip hop or hip hop culture — the effect is that I skirt a few edges on my playlist and have to violently throw down a “thumbs down DO NOT PLAY” when the site decides to trip along from genre influence to genre.

There’s a certain narrowness of range in terms of lyrical content that I have always found annoying with hip hop, and a certain narcissism.  The effect is I can’t help but think I’ve stumbled into a wasting of talent on the small and insignificant — a little too much chasing and eating of own tails.
This album was more or less good, though.  In terms of race and gender relations, um… “keeping it real”, um… “in the hood”… who can go wrong with “Dark skin girls are better than light skin, light skin girls ain’t better than dark skin”.  Some Ivy League Grad student can do a Cultural Studies Graduate thesis on the cultural and sociological undercurrents inherent in that song’s premise.

Okay, seriously, that and another song with a narrative on getting annoyed with his brother for overstaying his welcome by crashing on his couch were good.  People can relate to them.  Stories are told.  A google search shows that I was hearing Del The Funky Homosapien — whether I will keep that in a mental file or not, I do not know.
Somewhere along the line, though, I heard two references thrown out to Vanilla Ice.  Disparaging, naturally.  I can’t defend Vanilla Ice as much more than a media creation which flamed out badly, but my thought was that I sure as Heck hope that these references date the songs to no later than maybe, at the latest 1996 (and I realize that Offspring got away with a reference in “You’re Pretty Fly for a White Guy” in 1998, and not jabbing at that makes me a hypocrite of sorts)– it seems pointless to harp on Vanilla Ice as a fraudulent poseur orbiting your musical domain that needs to be mocked away.  The problem is that I do not know that they do — Vanilla Ice is a short-hand and easy out.

Sometime past his televised nervous break-down, Van Winkle has had the last laugh — insofar as he hired great money managers during his 15 minutes of fame that has allowed him to maintain his wealth which makes that whole Punching Bag thing moot.

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