Upon first glance at the title alone, “Bitch Bad,” it’s easy to dismiss Lupe Fiasco’s second single from Food & Liquor 2: The Great American Rap Album PT.1 as just another misogynistic rap song calling women “bitches.” Of course with an artist like Lupe nothing is as simple as it seems on the surface. Within the first line of the song– “I say bitch bad, woman good, lady better”–it’s clear Lupe is going to satirize the concept of “bad bitches” telling the story from how derogatory and damaging the reference can be.
One of the reasons Lupe has such a cult-like fanbase is because of his unwillingness to pander to the status quo. In hip-hop where “bitch” is as frequent as rapping about money, and is synonymous for woman, telling a multi-faceted story cautioning against the word is not very popular. For each verse Lupe tells a different hypothetical story that is far too close to reality. It’s storytelling at it’s finest. The beginning of the story starts with the ittle boy that hears his mother refer to herself as the B word and then later internalizes that as how he relates to women. In the middle is the sad tale of a group of young girls watching videos, listening to songs without parental supervision, learning how to become a “bad bitch” instead of seeing the video models as paid actresses. To close out Lupe imagines the little boy from the first verse meeting one of the girls from the second verse and both of them now have warped ideas of women. “Just like that, you see the fruit of the confusion/He caught in a reality, she caught in an illusion/Bad mean good to her, she really nice and smart/But bad mean bad to him, bitch don’t play your part.”
There’s no denying the concept along with the lyrics are evident of an emcee who has mastered his craft. Honestly, the first few listens it seemed as if his flow was off. His rhymes were not in-sync with the beat. After continuously listening with the lyrics in mind the song represents the epitome of what rap should be– a dope beat, storytelling and a strong flow. Lupe’s done it again. Now let’s hope the message reaches all the “bad bitches” and the men that like to refer to them as such.
[Photo: Getty Images]