Spoonie Gee's "Love Rap" is coming up in Tom's latest Twitter poll
, and I've been meaning to link these for a while anyway and I've run out of excuses not to.
Basically, I became a rock critic so that I could write about Spoonie Gee and Teena Marie, though that barely begins to explain it — right off, I'm not just writing about Spoonie Gee, I'm writing about myself and the Rolling Stones, and there's a lot of let's call it hopeful
thinking here, that Spoonie and hip-hop can pick up the critical thinking baton that Jagger and Dylan and punk rock all dropped. There's a lot of bracing naïveté in the first of these pieces, but actually I think it's the piece that goes deepest, my mind digging up and throwing itself and dirt and arrowheads at the world, what music can be and what writing can be, what thinking can be — and I still identified w/ punk rock so in bringing it up with Spoonie I'm not so much using punk to tell you what Spoonie's like but using Spoonie to tell you what punk
is like: it's like me; it's like Spoonie. Or so I wished, that we were included in its variety. "There's a second story behind the first."
At least at the moment the first link should give you all three pieces consecutively through Google Books, but in case it doesn't, try the second link for "Sex Don't Love Nobody" and the third for "The Godfather LP" (and the second has some great pics). And if the first link balks, scroll back from the third.Spoonie Gee
(1985)Sex Don't Love Nobody
(1987)Spoonie Gee The Godfather LP
—For the first two of these I unconsciously developed a formula: Performer Gets Critic --> Performer Loses Critic --> Performer Gets Critic (in the first piece it's Spoonie Gets Critic, in the second it's Kool Moe Dee Gets Critic). Used the formula on Teena Marie when I reviewed Naked To The World
. Later used the formula more consciously while reviewing several others and it didn't work as well.
—Mike Tyson hadn't yet been accused of rape when I wrote the Godfather
review or else I couldn't have ended it like that. I lucked out.
—The first piece was submitted to one zine; the editor supposedly was waiting on it because it needed an update which I wrote but then she didn't actually want me, or Spoonie, so I gave it to Jim DeRogatis and he published it in his fanzine Reasons For Living
. I kept it in fragments as I'd written it because that way I got three closers.
—There've been attempts to recast and glorify Spoonie Gee as having initiated the pimp-mack thing in hip-hop, but to his credit that's NOT REMOTELY TRUE: as my reviews say, his vulnerability was never far from his boasts. I do take him to task for the woman-hating in "Street Girl," but I see deeper stories.
—"I've run out of excuses not to": Regarding the search for deeper stories, I may have a kindred spirit in Crystal at The Singles Jukebox
, but I'm too afraid of her to find out. Anyhow, I've been wanting to link my Spoonie Trilogy and point to it ever since I read Joshua and Crystal in the comments of the Jukebox's review of Juice WRLD's "Fine China"
: what Joshua and Crystal wrote are interesting stubs that they could extend into actual thinking and for all I know they have, though I don't expect the Jukebox to have a substantive discussion of anything anymore — but haven't really been reading to see if it has, and maybe I underestimate them. My assumption is that I know way more than Crystal does about "old white critics mad about misogyny in hip-hop," and what I know beats the crap out of what she knows, but she doesn't want my help.
This entry was originally posted at https://koganbot.dreamwidth.org/378393.html. Comments still welcome here, there, and anywhere.