Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Nicki Minaj -- "Did It On 'Em" (2010)

Sh*tted on 'em
Man, I just sh*tted on 'em
Sh*tted on 'em
Put your number two's in the air
If you did it on 'em

Here I go again, willy-nilly, throwing the schedule out the window and going off half-cocked and arms akimbo.

The decision to write about "Did It On 'Em" was made less than 24 hours ago, and this post immediately went to the top of the list in terms of priority.  You simply do NOT put off a song like this a minute longer than is necessary.  So stop the presses, and sound the warning klaxon.

I'm more than a little worried that I like "Did It On 'Em" as much as I do.  Is there something wrong with me?  The answer to that question is probably obvious, but let's be serious for a minute -- is there something really, really wrong with me?
I remember when "Beavis and Butthead" debuted on television many years ago.  The general consensus was that this show was the ultimate in crude and tasteless television.

But one critic astutely observed that while the rest of us were decrying it as the worst piece of trash ever to soil the public airwaves, somewhere there were a bunch of guys working on a show that would make "Beavis and Butthead" look as tame as "Leave It To Beaver."

And he was right:

I will probably have to eat these words someday, but I have to believe that no female hip-hip performer -- no male performer either -- will ever exceed Nicki Minaj's excesses on this song.  

The Los Angeles Times called "Did It on 'Em" -- the new single from Nicki Minaj's Pink Friday album -- "aggressively scatological," which is perhaps an understatement.  The Pitchfork reviewer says that "Did It On 'Em" is notable because it highlights how "beautifully, effortlessly weird [Nicki Minaj] is" (Amen to that!) and "how willing she is to contort her voice and persona into pretzel shapes just to induce that oh-shit face in anyone listening."  That's a fact, Jack!

I thought about starting this post by quoting some of the less "aggressively scatological" lines from this song, then giving everyone a warning about just exactly what they would be getting into if they read further. 

Believe it or not, I do worry about offending my readers.  I have a number of friends who read this blog, and some of them might find songs like this one very distasteful.  But I think "Did It On 'Em" is just one of the most powerful and unique songs I've heard in years, so I'm not going to hold back.  If it's not to your taste, I certainly don't blame you.

I first heard this song on the radio about ten days ago.  I'd never heard so many bleeps in one song in my life, which immediately piqued my interest.  This was Nicki Minaj, after all, and Nicki pulls no punches.

I heard the song a couple of more times on the radio, then went online to listen to the uncensored version.  Nicki didn't disappoint me.  She rarely does.

A couple of prior 2 or 3 lines posts have alluded to this performer, by whom I am simply fascinated.  She has a very distinctive voice (she spent the first five years of her life in Trindad and Tobago, which may or may not be responsible for her accent) and has great timing.  Plus she is amazingly hot in a totally bizarre way -- pink hair (sometimes), a much bigger ass than Jennifer Lopez or what's-her-name Kardashian ever dreamed of, and (best of all) an incredibly foul mouth and nasty attitude.  On the let-it-all-hang-out scale, she makes Madonna look like Celine Dion.

The "Pink Friday" album cover

For quite awhile, Nicki specialized in contributing verses to other people's songs.  Her guest appearances in the Trey Songz song "Bottoms Up" and especially in Kanye West's "Monster" are tours de force.  I ain't lyin'.

In fact, I am planning to do posts featuring both those songs, and I'm really putting the cart before the horse to write about this song -- which features Nicki as the primary singer rather than as a guest contributor -- before I write about the other two.  But all my plans went right out the window as soon as I heard the uncensored version of "Did It On 'Em."   

Nicki's front and rear
Here's a link to Rap Genius, which has some useful notes on the lyrics of the song.  But even if most of the lyrics don't really make sense to you, Nicki communicates the basic point very forcefully indeed:  "I am the absolute queen of the hip-hop universe and if you dare to challenge my superiority, I will put you on the ground, squat over your face, and do a number two on you!"

Listening to this song is like walking by a car and suddenly the car's anti-theft alarm goes off and your heart rate instantly jumps to about 500 beats a minute.  It is a kick in the ass, a kick in the teeth, and a kick in the b*lls, all at exactly the same time.

You can laugh off some of the more exaggeratedly disrespectful lyrics as being so far over the top that they are comical.  You could say the same thing about the really grisly scenes in low-budget slasher movies -- but didn't Texas Chainsaw Massacre still scare the crap out of you?

Don Imus is creepy
Near the end of the song, Nicki pays homage to Don Imus, the moron shock-jock whose syndicated CBS radio show was cancelled after he referred to the Rutgers University women's basketball team as "nappy-headed ho's," and disses her competition (there really is none, of course) all at the same time:

I'ma start throwing "Just for Me" perm at your heads
I'ma get the kid version
The kid one, cause you're a bunch of kids
Bunch of nappy-headed ho's running around

Thanks to my brother, Mahbod Moghadam, whose Rap Genius website is an asset of incalculable value to students and fans of hip-hoppery, I know that Nicki is talking here about a line of hair-care products that are marketed to African-American girls.

And finally, perhaps the most outrageous lines I've ever heard in a song:

If I had a dick, I would pull it out and piss on 'em
Let me shake it off

Kind of takes your breath away, doesn't it?  (I guess Freud was right.)

Which reminds me of a favorite piece of anonymous doggerel:

No matter how you shake and dance
The last drop always falls down your pants

Here's "Did It On 'Em":

Here's a link you can use to buy this song on iTunes.  (You can buy a clean version, but what would be the point of that?)

Did It On'em - Pink Friday (Deluxe Version)

Here's a link to use if you prefer Amazon:

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