Song of the Day #1,312: ‘Niggas in Paris’ – Jay-Z & Kanye West

Clocking in at #5 on the Pazz & Jop poll is ‘Niggas in Paris’ from Watch the Throne, the much-anticipated collaboration between Jay-Z and Kanye West.

Everything I’ve read about this album suggests that these two are more out of touch than Mitt Romney with America in 2012. They rap about their wealth, their fame, their bling, their women — dick-grabbing egotism at its finest.

Perhaps it’s ironic? Does it even matter if it is?

I like Kanye more when he’s full of insecurity and self-loathing. That’s what made My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy (last year’s first place album in this poll) such a mesmerizing record. This Kanye I can live without.

And as for Jay-Z… I just don’t know what Beyoncé sees in him.

[Intro: Blades of Glory sample]
We’re going to skate to one song, one song only

[Verse 1: Jay-Z]
So I ball so hard mothafuckas wanna fine me, first niggas gotta find me
What’s 50 grand to a mothafucka like me, can you please remind me?
(Ball so hard) This shit crazy, y’all don’t know that don’t shit faze me
The Nets could go 0 for 82 and I’d look at you like this shit gravy
(Ball so hard) This shit weird, we ain’t even spose to be here
(Ball so hard) Since we here, it’s only right that we’d be fair
Psycho: I’m liable to go Michael, take your pick
Jackson, Tyson, Jordan, Game 6
(Ball so hard) Got a broken clock, Rolleys that don’t tick tock
Audemars that’s losing time, hidden behind all these big rocks
(Ball so hard) I’m shocked too, I’m supposed to be locked up too
If you escaped what I’ve escaped, you’d be in Paris getting fucked up too
(Ball so hard) Let’s get faded, Le Meurice for like 6 days
Gold bottles, scold models, spillin’ Ace on my sick J’s
(Ball so hard) Bitch, behave, just might let you meet ‘Ye
Chi town’s D. Rose, I’m moving the Nets to BK

Ball so hard mothafuckas want to fine me
(That shit cray, that shit cray, that shit cray)

[Verse 2: Kanye]
She said, “‘Ye can we get married at the mall?”
I said, “Look, you need to crawl ‘fore you ball
Come and meet me in the bathroom stall
And show me why you deserve to have it all”
(Ball so hard) That shit cray, ain’t it Jay? What she order, fish filet?
(Ball so hard) “Your whip so cold!” This old thing?
Act like you’ll ever be around mothafuckas like this again
Bougie girl, grab her hand, fuck that bitch she don’t wanna dance
Excuse my French but I’m in France, I’m just sayin’
Prince Williams ain’t do it right if you ask me
Cause I was him, I would have married Kate and Ashley
What’s Gucci, my nigga? What’s Louis, my killa?
What’s drugs, my deala? What’s that jacket, Margiela?
Doctors say I’m the illest, cause I’m suffering from realness
Got my niggas in Paris and they going gorillas, huh!

I don’t even know what that means
(No one knows what it means, but it’s provocative)
No it’s not, it’s gross (Gets the people going!)


[Verse 3: Kanye]
You are now watching the throne, don’t let me get in my zone
Don’t let me get in my zone, don’t let me get in my zone
These other niggas is lyin, actin’ like the summer ain’t mine
(I got that hot bitch in my home) You know how many hot bitches I own?
Don’t let me get in my zone, don’t let me get in my zone
Don’t let me get in my zone, don’t let me get in my zone
The stars is in the building, they hands is to the ceiling
I know I’m ’bout to kill it, how you know? I got that feeling
You are now watching the throne, don’t let me into my zone
Don’t let me into my zone (I’m definitely in my zone)

3 thoughts on “Song of the Day #1,312: ‘Niggas in Paris’ – Jay-Z & Kanye West

  1. Dana says:

    I know I am in the minority in this opinion, but I find Kanye West overrated and I have yet to hear a Jay Z rap that really has impressed me either. So teaming these two up does nothing for me, and, if this song is any indication, I feel quite confident that I won’t be missing anything by not hearing their album.

    This song represents the antithesis of the kind of rap I was praising the other day, that being rap that mixes vocals, interesting instrumentation and rhythmic changes. Today’s song has none of that–it’s a monotonous rap with an annoying repetitive beat and wholly uninspired instrumentation.

    I wonder if the Village Voice had heard this song without knowing who the artists were would they have placed it on their list? I suspect not, but such is the allure of Kanye West (and to a lesser extent Jay Z) on critics.

  2. Clay says:

    I agree with most of what you say, though I’ll add that Kanye’s albums (the ones I’ve heard, at least) do have that mix of rap, vocals, interesting instrumentation and musical changes.

  3. Dana says:

    Yes, I agree that Kanye’s music does have those elements, and I’m not saying I dislike all I’ve heard from him (though, as I have said, I dislike him as a person, which makes me less interested in hearing his work). I’m simply saying that I think Kanye is generally overhyped and overrated.

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