Joey Bada$$'s 'ALL-AMERIKKKAN BADA$$' Speaks Black America's Everyday Thoughts
By Isha Thorpe
April 13, 2017
Joey Bada$$ wants us to wake the hell up. At least, that’s the overall message we got from his latest project. ALL-AMERIKKKAN BADA$$ is the Brooklyn MC’s new album and throughout it, Joey expresses his tumulus relationship with the Unites States, as he speaks for the majority of people from inner cities.
Joey wastes no time getting to the point, which is one thing about this album that I respect. He doesn’t sugarcoat reality and the struggles of the urban community while he spits about the police brutality, systematic racism, and the government – including President Donald Trump. “GOOD MORNING AMERIKKKA” opens up the project with facts about the unfair circumstances that many minorities experience; while “FOR MY PEOPLE” prays for those who just want to go about their lives without any conflict, but continue to get misjudged and stepped on for no reason.
“TEMPTATION” tugs at heartstrings because it opens and ends with the viral speech from Zianna Oliphant, the 9-year-old girl from Charlotte whose words addressing the Charlotte City Council after the killing of Keith Lamont Scott. Joey expresses his pain and restlessness throughout this entire track.
“Y U DON’T LOVE ME? (MISS AMERIKKKA)” is one of my favorite songs on the entire album. It perfectly compares America to a boyfriend/girlfriend that you love, but continues to do you wrong. It cleverly details how being a black American in this country can be similar to an abusive relationship.
As a minority, you can constantly try to cope and make it work because you feel like things will get better over time, even though you’re the only one that keeps getting hurt. But like a destructive relationship, you eventually need face the hard truth and see that you need to move on from constantly being a doormat. It’s time to finally be respected. You matter!
“Tell me why you don’t love me/ Why you always misjudge me?/ Why you always put so many things above me?/ Why you lead me to believe that I’m ugly?/ Why you never trust me?” Joey raps on this particular song. “Why you gotta kick me down on all fours?/ Why you can't stand to see me stand tall?/ Tell me why we got a war?/ Why we gotta fight? Why we always gotta spar for?/ Why the cops always gotta get called?”
Another one of the best songs on ALL-AMERIKKKAN BADA$$ is “ROCKABYE BABY.” The heavy-based song immediately grabs the listeners, before Joey and Schoolboy Q start spitting that real s**t. The whole tone of the track is strong and in your face. Zero fs were given and I loved every line of the empowering single. I also felt in the two rappers voices that they perfectly conveyed a passion to force those who want to ignore the truth to listen up, whether they want to or not.
“LEGENDARY” serves as an uplifting song that expresses how legacies live on forever even though some souls may already be gone. It’s the perfect song for those who may have lost loved ones to unforeseen, unjust circumstances to understand that their deaths may serve a purpose. Perhaps these losses can be catalysts for change one day, in the near future. In “BABYLON,” Joey has had enough and is ready to create change on his own. The song describes the emotions of someone who’s constantly been beaten up, and the moment the person decides to put his foot down once and for all.
With other songs like “DEVASTATED,” “SUPER PREDATOR,” “RING THE ALARM,” and the rest of the previously named tracks; Joey is proudly the voice of those who often go unheard, and uncared for by many. Serving as the voice of the urban community, Joey perfectly illustrates many black Americans’ everyday thoughts.
The MC sums everything up perfectly on “AMERIKKKAN IDOL.” In order to see something done, the urban community has to be the one to do it. Nothing is going to fall in our lap. To end police brutality, prejudges, etc.; we have to be the ones who band together and declare a call for action. If not, we’ll only perish at the hands of continued injustice.
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**WARNING: Explicit language below**