It's college football's offseason, which is a problem. My problem. Your problem. Our problem. And collective problems call for collective solutions. We're gonna get through this. One way we'll do that is through Free Form Friday, a sort of football-like substance which will hopefully fill the time leading up to what used to be football Saturdays. It's one part football, one part pop culture, and everything a Lou Holtz-penned sitcom never could be. Enjoy.
So earlier this week while those of us in Bulldog Nation were busy looking for a new defensive coordinator (mission accomplished), our SB Nation colleagues at Viva the Matadors were busy interviewing Texas Tech head coach and Ryan Gosling impersonator Kliff Kingsbury.
It's an interesting read, even if you're not a Red Raider fan, but the part that I found most surprising was the part where they asked Kingsbury for his personal top 5 rap songs of all time. The results? Disturbing.
Coach Kingsbury: 5) Nuthin' But a G Thang by Dr. Dre, 4) Ice Ice Baby by Vanilla Ice, 3) Juicy by Notorious B.I.G., 2) Lose Yourself by Eminem, 1) Forever by Drake, Kanye, Lil Wayne and Eminem
Now, I'm sure that Coach Richt's five favorite rap songs of all time are probably by the Sugarhill Gang. And they're all "Rapper's Delight." So glass houses, stones, etc. But since Kingsbury's a child of the early 90's, the decade in which even the most lily-white of Texas teenagers was probably trying to snag a copy of Striaght Outta Compton, and since he essentially relates to college-aged males for a living, I kind of expected his tastes to be a little more modern and/or refined.
Now, matters of taste are not subject to dispute. So if you want to listen to Vanilla Ice while wearing your old elastic waistband parachute pants, go ahead and kick it, bboooyyyyy. But for my part, these are my 5 favorite rap songs of all time, in no particular order.
1) "B.O.B. (Bombs Over Baghdad)- Outkast. Really "Ms. Jackson", "Player's Ball" and a dozen other Outkast songs could be on this list. Bonus: the isolated vocal track is perhaps more mind-blowing than the full arrangement.
2) "Nuthin' But a G Thang"- Dr. Dre. The only choice upon which Coach Kingsbury and I agree. Since we're very nearly the same age, I expect that this song had a lot to do with shaping our early tastes in music. When it came out the song was unescapable, even in rural south Georgia where L.A. hip hop might as well have been a transmission from an alien planet. Dr. Dre's The Chronic is also a favorite album of mine because it represented my first introduction to Parliament Funkadelic.
3) "Scenario"- A Tribe Called Quest. Less jazz-flow than most ATCQ works, this one is also notable for featuring a breakout guest performance by some guy called Busta Rhymes.
4) "10 Bricks"- Raekwon (ft. Cappadonna & Ghostface). Melodic, metaphoric. When it comes up on iTunes I find myself nodding my head in a trance-state. You'd be surprised how much of what I've written for Dawg Sports was written while I was listening to this song. And "Fishin' In The Dark" by the Nitty Gritty Dirt Band.
5) "Sunday" -Earl Sweatshirt (ft. Frank Ocean). I pick up something new each time I listen to Earl Sweatshirt. I don't know if it's because the kid's that deep or I'm old and hard of hearing. Either way, still listening.
I invite you to post yours in the comments, with hopes that Coach Kingsbury will read it and up his game. These are your five favorites. Not the five which you think are most lyrically elegant, culturally significant, etc. Until later . . .