I Don’t Care If You Don’t Like Cardi B’s “Bodak Yellow”

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I hate when people try to dictate what we can and can’t like. It’s almost like people can’t have opinions and preferences anymore. If you like something that someone thinks you shouldn’t like, you “have no taste” (the sophisticated way of saying “I’m smarter than you”). If you don’t like something that someone else likes, you’re a hater. Where’s the happy medium?

I just read an article from “The Grapevine” one of the mini-blogs on The Root’s website. The title of the article, written brilliantly by Michael Harriet, is titled “‘Bodak Yellow’ Is Trash, and if You Like It, Your Taste in Music Is Trash”. I must admit, the headline grabbed me. I actually like the “Bodak Yellow” by Cardi B. It’s not the most lyrical piece of work ever and it surely isn’t going to discuss solutions for police reform. Still, it’s a nice little song to ride around to and the girls at my HBCU love it! They come to life whenever the DJ puts it on rotation or it happens to come on the radio.

Because of the gripping title, I hastily clicked on the article and read it in its entirety. The article was well-written, funny and Mr. Harriet did make some good points. However, I choose to disagree with his assertion that Cardi B is a “bad rapper” and that “Bodak Yellow” isn’t a good song. My man even went as far to intellectually say that you can’t debate that the song isn’t trash, even from an artistic sense! He said, “‘Bodak Yellow’ is objectively trash. There is no debate. Not everything is subjective—even if it is art. Some art is bad, no matter how much you like it. It is your right to like it, but that doesn’t make it not trash. If you like Tyler Perry plays more than A Raisin in the Sun or believe a fish sandwich from Captain D’s is better than a New Orleans po’boy, that is your right. There’s nothing wrong with having terrible taste. But if we go out, you can’t choose the entertainment or the restaurant.

You can tell Mr. Harriet is the type of person that ask you where you want to go to eat and you say it and he gets mad because it isn’t the place he wants to go! What gives him the right to discredit someone’s musical opinion? Is Cardi B the best rapper in the world? Absolutely not! Is she the best female rapper in the world? Well, Nicki Minaj and Remy Ma this year say otherwise. Does she have the hottest song on the radio? Most definitely!

I would love to hear what Mr. Harriet’s favorite songs are since he dissed everyone that likes “Bodak Yellow” as uncultured swines who he wouldn’t go out to eat with. I don’t understand the problem with the song. How is Cardi B’s hit any worse than any of the other songs playing on the radio now? At least we understood what she was saying! She perfectly embodied Kodak Black’s flow from “No Flockin’” and I swear I heard her mimic the flow from O.T. Genesis’s street smash “Push It” but I might be pushing it myself!

Why are we taking a club song seriously enough to question someone’s taste in music if they like it? This is a song at the prom that the DJ puts on to get the kids hype. This is the song that you play at the HBCU pep-rally to get students hyped for the rest of the program. This is the song that girls record themselves on Snapchat singing when they’re bored. Nothing more, nothing less! Why don’t you just let Cardi B be great? Let her get her money and her shine on without hate!

And, boy, let’s not get on the music that you guys from other generations listen to! I’ll give Mr. Harriet this, he acknowledged that he listened to certain misogynistic and drug inspired songs in his day. He even pointed out a few songs that he feels are trash but he still enjoys listening to them. He said later in the article. “Look, I am not trying to go all Joe Budden on today’s rappers because, truth be told, every generation likes shitty rap. I danced to ‘Whoomp, There It Is!’ I will still dance to ‘Knuck if You Buck.’ But I know they are terrible songs. They just appeal to my sense of nostalgia. Plus, I was probably either drunk or high the first 1,012 times I heard them. Maybe that’s the problem. Maybe I was too sober and lucid when I heard “Bodak Yellow.

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Interesting selection of songs you chose Mr. Harriet. However, that’s not what was on my mind. See, everyone has such a problem with “Bodak Yellow” but let’s talk about a few songs that were popping back in the 90’s that you all listened to that makes the explicit version of “Bodak Yellow” sound like a nursery rhyme.

  • “Pop That *******” By 2 Live Crew

Does anything else need be said about this one? The whole 2 Live Crew and Luke catalogue is the soundtrack for an orgy! People are mad at the success of  “Bodak Yellow” though?

  • “How Do U Want It” by 2Pac

I love this song but we’re not gonna act like even the censored version of this song doesn’t vividly gives description of sexual positions. This is still played on the radio by the way! It’s moved up to you urban contemporary radio stations now!

  • “Tootsie Roll” by 69 Boyz

So, I guess we’re not going to act like this song isn’t trash. It’s an instant party song though so I guess it gets a pass right? We’re just not even going to mention that it was the 90’s twerk song!

  • “Tip Drill” by Nelly

Oh, and this one is for everybody that identified more with early 2000’s hip hop that’s trying to throw shade at Cardi B. Like y’all didn’t wake up at 3 AM to watch this on BET Uncut. Cardi B’s video for “Bodak Yellow” isn’t this vulgar!

 

Bottom line is this: let Cardi B be great. Stop imposing your opinions on people and trying to intellectually insult people. Get up from your computer and have some fun!

Article written in response to: ‘Bodak Yellow’ Is Trash, and if You Like It, Your Taste in Music Is Trash, The Root

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PUBLIC NOTE: The opinions expressed in this article are the author's own and do not reflect the view of the Urban Intellectuals, affiliates or partners.



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2 COMMENTS

  1. Did you seriously compare her to Tupac, Tip Drill & 2LiveCrew? How about comparing her to relevant female rappers? Lady of Rage, Foxy Brown, Lil Kim, Da Brat, Eve … those who paved the way … Cardi B is TRASH. She’s lyrically weak. What in YOUR mind constitutes a good song?

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