Lil B is the greatest rapper in history and I've spent over six hours to explain why.
If you require a fine tuned philosophical explanation of why Lil B is the greatest rapper of all time, it isn't worth being explained to you. Brevity is the soul of wit. He has made a larger quantity of music, all free, than almost any musician in such a short period of time. Very few of his tracks aren't original in some manner whether it be in their interaction with the beats, some unexpressed/rarely expressed societal consideration shown in various lights that range from exaggeration, truth, storytelling, lyrical consideration, ironical mockery, and sheer existence. when someone is surprised it has been neurologically shown that they are more prepared to intake new information, so his spectrum works on a few levels beyond originality for the sake of creativity. Lil B is the god of positivity, his music is beyond comprehension. Lil B is one of the smartest rappers of all time; this man has done lectures at Harvard. Lil B is a talented artist who likes to make goofy ass songs and enjoy himself. People are drawn to his likeable personality and sheer majesticness. Lil B is the Based God; layers upon layers and we are yet to find his mantle. What follows is an in-depth analysis of just one of the many masterpieces Lil B has created. Titled "Lil B - No Black Person Is Ugly MUSIC VIDEO MOST POWERFUL SONG OF THE DECADE?" Let's begin at the beggining of the song. The lyrics state: "No black person is ugly No black person is ugly No black person is ugly No black person is ugly" Throughout history, Black people have had to put up with mistreatment by mainly white people. The Based God is reminding us that Black people are not ugly at all and should be treated better and not judged based on the colour of their skin.
The fact that The Based God repeats this 4 times could show the desperation in the message that he is trying to convey. He wants this message to stay in people's heads so everybody knows that black people are not ugly.
Lil B then begins his first verse with:
"Make another dime a day, tryna make it rhyme away
Sometime my skin is the reason I'm alive today"
A lot of today’s rappers are admittedly in the industry for the pure sake of making money. Lil B, however, could care less about the “dime a day” he makes from rapping; what he really cares about is speaking out against racism and rhyming away the prejudice that affects African Americans to this very day; all whilst empowering who he is in the second line rather than any wealth he has.
We then delve into the next chunk of lines:
"Bigger than just a race, no card, just a race
No smile, fix your face, we all live in this place
Tryna make peace with the police
I'm not on probation so why you out asking me
This is not just about black, or wasn't about black
When we talk about that you wonder why I talk back"
Here ‘B is trying to explain that race should not be about 'privilege’. At many points in time, people use excuses like The Race Card, Playing the race card is an idiomatic phrase that refers to exploitation of either racist or anti-racist attitudes by accusing others of racism.
Lil B states that The Black community needs to be “bigger” than using The Race Card as a justification to things and eliminate it all together.
Lil B always has and always will support positive messages through his music, even if that means supporting peace with the very thing that most rappers have come to despise.
This fits the theme of the song because for decades, police officers have been accused of profiling against black people, making headlines on numerous occasions.
The last three lines fit in with the common black stereotype present in the US, the constant assumption that any black male in a crime ridden area must be on some kind of probation.
How could one even think that Lil B is on probation, he is the epitome of positivity.
Following all of this of course is:
"My English not perfect, I'm not the best at school
But understand I'm (?), I love life's rules
Homeless people will even give me money, I'm too real for the game
Reflection of the fame
I got cash, I hide all the pain
Your skin black people, they won't say a thing
That drama is a shame
They wanna kill you before they even know your name"
At the start Lil B knows that this line should be “My English is not perfect” and he knows that English is just another way that he is oppressed and put into the undercaste. He makes the same clever play in the next line “I’m not the best at school” intentionally leaving words out to resist the hegemonic narrative that white English is the English and that those who do not speak it are unintelligent or uneducated. This line will go over most people’s heads and is yet another reason why this song is so powerfully subversive. Lil B then reminds us that he didn’t attend a college or university (although he went to the high schools Albany & Berkeley).
The Based God then teaches us that homeless people can often be the most generous. “Feed the needy not the greedy”. Of course the cash lyric is to shine light on the fact that It is much more difficult for black Americans to achieve the wealth that white Americans have over history. For example, statistically in 2015, a white person with a high school diploma has a higher income than a black person with a bachelor’s degree. At the same time that line expresses how Lil B tries to hide his pain from his fans and the public but can’t maintain the front.
In the past and even in the present day, there have been people who have targeted black people in violent acts or have tried to farm black people just because of the colour of their skin. Think about the Trayvon Martin incident.
The racist people don’t know the stories behind the people they are targeting and don’t even know about their lives or even their names but they are just treated badly because they are black people living in a society where some people, to this day, remain racist.
Deep stuff from the Based God.
The Hook Begins:
"Sunshine, sunshine, lookin' for the sunshine"
Lil B is telling people to look for the sunshine, or rather, the good that is within people as opposed to judging them before you get to know them. Sunshine represents the bright side of things and Lil B is in a quest to persuade others to uncover this bright side in other people prior to making judgment.
"No black is person is ugly, don't say it one time
No black is person is ugly, don't say it one time
No black is person is ugly, don't say it one time"
The repition of this lyric, much like the intro of the song, conveys Lil B’s importance of this message. Said 22 times throughout the song, Lil B wants convey this message of not judging a book by its cover and asks the listener to not immediately assume a person is “ugly” based upon their race or appearance.
“Don’t say it one time” is used doubly as a call for listeners to never say that a “black person is ugly” as well as playing off of the fact that he repeats this verse, not just saying it a single time.
With the first interpretation of the “don’t say it one time in mind”, it’s interesting to note that the repetition of this line completely contradicts his point of never saying what he’s saying. Could this be purposeful irony, a satire noting the fact that even with this message, things will never change and people will always continue to say it, regardless of what he preaches? You decide.
Verse 2 is a doozy so I'll break it down as much as I can:
"I'm sorta like a panther, I'm silent like the underground"
The Black Panther Party or BPP was an organization in the 1960s and 70s in the United States that believed in more extreme tactics to achieve equality for black people in America. They supported Martin Luther King Jr’s ideas, but believed that his nonviolent approach was ineffective. Here Lil B states that he’s Panther-like in his beliefs and clearly believes that racial profiling still exists in modern-America.
"Dealing with the trials of life, how did we get here today?"
In this line, Lil B decides to acknowledge the numerous obstacles he has faced in life, while reflecting on how these very same obstacles have shaped the image of our society today
"Black people not showed in the media"
Based God also touches on this later in the song and in the music video. He believes that black people are not shown enough on the news or in magazines, perhaps because the media believes them to be ugly, which ties back to the hook and title of this track. Often times the media reports on Black people in a negative light doing crimes, riots, and etc. Or portray them in a negative stereotype in films and TVs where they’re cast as the thugs, pushers, pimps, maid, hood rats, angry Black and etc. Therefore, they never show the real Black people as in strong, beautiful, creative, intelligent and etc.
"I was told that you gotta afro, that you gotta big nose
That your lips are too big, that you're talking low"
Lil B tells of all the aesthetic stereotypes of black people that he faced growing up, and the misconceptions of these being what all black people must look and talk like.
"My people understand, so why you don't know?
It's just communication
If we all sat down and got past the revelations"
This is all about coming together and speaking to eachother. No person being more human than the other. Advising bigotry to be countered with knowledge and education of the world and language blacks encompass. Revelations is also the last book in the bible which talks about the end of mankind. 'B is saying for humans to go beyond the end and ultimately progress.
"The future of the people
Advancement, tryna take chances, the media"
More of the same from the last lines while adding that advancement, an honest solution, can only arise from communication; an honest conversation.
"Propaganda, it slandered the black beauty
I'm not stupid, I see it everyday"
Lil B is probably referring to figures and artwork popular in the United States in the late 19th century and early 20th century which portrayed African Americans as a completely black, featureless people who greatly enjoyed watermelons.
Artwork like this tarnished the reputation of black people and ultimately led to the creation of stereotypes that still exist today.
"They got shows like Jailbreak but won't help you get straight"
This could be interpreted in 2 ways.
One :Based God is stating that they promote criminal activity yet won’t give those with such backgrounds a second chance.
Two: Based God may be speaking about Prison Break which is a much more famous show then Jailbreak, considering Jailbreak is an English show
“Get straight” also means managing addiction through counseling, support groups, job security, food security, having a purpose, and reclaiming a sense of optimism. Addiction does not happen in a vacuum. One of the most cruel aspects of the New Jim Crow is the underfunding of things black people need to survive, live with, and thrive past addiction while at the same time there’s always money for putting a person in jail ($40,000 a year on average).
"I'm tryna see black on more magazines"
Lil B wants to see more Africans on magazines and not in other negatively portrayed media outlets like Police Blotters or the 6 o-clock news; he wants to see them being praised not disgraced.
"On the streets, the hoods that you're claimin'
Never been racist so I understand if you wanted
Try to change places
I've seen the other side and I know that's amazin'"
Here he's alluding to the want in many underpriveledged black homes to get out of their situation. The Based God has seen and felt, in a sense, what white privilege is like because of his status, money, fame, etc. He's showing understanding for that want and exclaiming that there needs to be more energy poured into making it a reality for his brother's and sisters.
"They want you to work to enslave you
They try to trick you to think they made you"
This is possibly the most powerful line in the song and a possible hint at some history here:
Lil B may be hinting at the Slave era where blacks were brought from Africa to work on different plantations across The Western Hemisphere.
Statistics show us that blacks struggle more socioeconomically; this causes a typical reaction to what is called Strain Theory (among many other theories) which states that it basically becomes more prevalent for underprivileged individuals to commit crime.
Often, “white society” praises desegregation and the events that led up to the civil rights movement but many, even today still feel that white society was built to keep minorities like blacks down.
Hence here, Lil B uses the term they try to trick Blacks to thinking they can have an equal life as others when in fact, it is not at all the same.
Added to the fact that the uber capitalist nature of the West where they commercialize many things to appear to the masses. Therefore giving people that shouldn’t buy what they can’t afford a credit line or loan to always make sure (enslave) they keep on working to pay back what they own. Bascially trick them into a system that they never could win. It’s a an illusion of freedom that there are choices. Lil B is feeding us the knowledge to fight back with this.
"Y'all got a voice, stand up against violence
If it's close to your home, stand up against rape
No means no,"
You may feel frustrated or be disenfranchised (due to felony laws), but you have a voice which can resist the New Jim Crow which resist rape culture which can resist the violence and the systems of oppression.
Lil B is taking a steadfast position against rape. No means no, and that’s it.
He might have been influenced by a discussion about rape he had on twitter with his fans.
"clean up the streets
You feel me? And stop that beef
Hands up for peace on the streets"
Lil B uses the last few bars of his song to indicate a common, overgeneralized issue that plagues the black community. It is a stigma that Blacks are mainly the minority group involved with drugs on the street and street-violence, including black on black crime. This is Lil B’s call to arms to end all of this negativity that surrounds blacks as a group. A double entendre, second meaning is putting up hands when you get pointed at with a "PIECE".
The hook repeats and the song slowly begins to fade.
This song serves as a battle cry, a sombrer soliloquy and a reflection of Lil B's most powerful thoughts. We have an obligation to maintain peace, that is what he's trying to get us to understand. Amidst the often bleak reality of the world we live in, sunshine will break our cloudy day and lead to more beautiful tomorrow. The sunshine in us that is. Love your fellow man, we are all on the road of life with the same number of questions. When we see the beauty in others, it will help us to an answer for a better tomorrow. Thank you Based God, please fuck my bitch.