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6 Thoughts I Had While Listening to Fetty Wap’s Self-Titled Debut Album

I’m a hip-hop head and could sometimes be considered a backpacker on a few Tuesdays a month, but I’m far from being a purist. I don’t hate all of this new “rap” the way that people who swear by Black Moon on Facebook do. I listen to Rich Homie Quan and laugh at Young Thug with the best of them. If a song is catchy, I’m catching it. I love Nas, N.W.A. is my favorite group, de la soul is dead is my favorite album and Jay-Z is my favorite rapper so my hip hop bonafides are set in stone, but I also rock with Drake (and couldn’t care less what he wrote on If You’re Reading This, It’s Too Late) and have been asking God to bless all the trap niggas like Future charged the hood congregants to do for weeks now.

#wallahMagic

Point is, I love music, and despite being in my mid-30s I can still appreciate all of the youth infused hip-hop that’s out now. The production, while very similar amongst a certain set, is perfect for the club and super melodic, and I love me a good melody. My favorite rapper used to sing ch-check out my melody, in fact. That’s not true, but its possible that you see what I did there, which is a pun considering that I’m about to talk about Fetty Wap. See?! That was also a pun that I didn’t intend. One might say that it was…no pun intended?

So with this open-mindedness in tow – and much like Waka Flocka Flame took over the radio some years ag0 – I found myself enjoying Fetty Wap and his back-to-back hit songs, “Trap Queen” and “My Way”. I once attempted to enlist random women on the street one day to see if they’d be my trap queen(s), to no avail. I even defended “Trap Queen” when it was lampooned by hipsterish white people who seemed to be mocking Black culture more than the song.

albumAnd on this past Tuesday, Fetty Wap dropped his debut album, creatively titled, Fetty Wap. I listened to it. And now I have thoughts about what I heard.

1. “Trap Queen” was an unqualified success. I’m also guessing that it was an accidental success in that it blew up way more than imagined. And this accident caused Atlantic Records to jump behind him and say, “yo, Fetty, that ‘Trap Queen’ song? Hot. We need 16 more of those.” To which Fetty Wap responded, “say no more”. This album sounds like one long ass remix of “Trap Queen”. Which isn’t a bad thing…kinda. But it also has 17 records that sound the same which is AT LEAST five too many. Be that as it may, that one shtick Fetty has works well as long as you don’t cop the album and only listen to him in clubs as God (or whoever you pray to) intended. Somewhere in Atlanta, though, Trinidad James is scratching his head.

2. Despite listening to the entire album, I’m not sure I listened to a single non-hook lyric. And it wasn’t for a lack of trying. But the truth is, and it comports with much of my listening of the “singing rappers” nowadays, I honestly don’t know, don’t show, and don’t care about what they’re rapping about. The few times I do listen to the lyrics I start to (briefly) fall into the old head “this is not rap” black hole (because they suck). Then the beat takes over and I just enjoy this music for what it is: a producer showcase with some new dude du jour that I probably won’t remember next year.

3. I don’t know who Monty is nor do I care to do even a minimal amount of research to find out, but if you didn’t know better, you might think that Fetty Wap was a group with, well, Fetty and Monty (Wap?) considering how many features he has on this album. One thing Fetty is for sure is a fan of Monty!

4. Fetty Wap has one trick, and he uses it on every single song. It’s that “yeaaaaaaaah baby” with the auto-tune adjustment on it. Every song. It got to the point while listening that I wanted to predict every place he might sing it. I even created a drinking game but nearly killed myself two songs in. Don’t do this at home kids. Or use Moscato so you can get to the end of the album without alcohol poisoning. Unless you’re a kid. Don’t do this at all kids. Don’t drink Moscato either, actually. Be better than that.

5. There are songs on this album that sound more like straight up trap&B songs than anything, which is where this obscured line between rappers and this new age of rap-singers gets super blurred. It’s also why I can’t argue with folks when they claim stuff like this isn’t hip-hop. I don’t think hip-hop is only that boom-bap, DJ Premier-infused golden-era sound, but I also don’t know what this album is either. All I know is that it sounds good as long as you aren’t listening too close.

6. I had a moment while listening where I wondered if I should be enjoying this album. I actively questioned if this was my music to enjoy. Then I realized that I pay my monthly Spotify Premium subscription so its definitely mine since I’m paying for it. I got over it quick. It’s like weave, except on my iPhone.

And yes I just called 2015 hip-hop…weave.

Thanks, Obama.

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Panama Jackson

Panama Jackson is pretty fly (and gorgeous) for a light guy. He used to ship his frito to Tito in the District, but shipping prices increased so he moved there to save money. He refuses to eat cocaine chicken. When he's not saving humanity with his words or making music with his mouth, you can find him at your mama's mama's house drinking her fine liquors. Most importantly, he believes the children are our future. You can hit him on his hitter at panamadjackson@gmail.com.

  • PhlyyPhree

    Panama did that so I didn’t have to go through that.
    Although, I follow you on Spotify (because I like to Columbus the music you listen to and then play it in front of my friends like “they ain’t up on THIS”) and I judged you like my name was St. Peter when I saw this.
    I TRIED to listen. I did. But I only got one song in before I got so annoyed and angry. And I was listening with my good headphones which means I was annoyed in super surround sound. Ugh. I wish the labels would stop giving these people deals or rather demanding that they produce full length albums. Just let them tour the chitln and homecoming circuit and keep their ‘one-hits’ wonderful.

    • panamajackson

      You can actually blame Shamira for this. I was telling her how much trash I though the Drake/Future album was and she asked if I’d listened to that new Fetty Wap. So I did.

      You’re welcome.

      • PhlyyPhree

        I have enough blame for both of you to share.

        • panamajackson

          I think thats fair. I be having some dope stuff on occasion tho!

          • PhlyyPhree

            More than occaisonally, you do. I have discovered many wonderous things in your playlists and recent history. But let’s try to keep the mis-steps and “waps” “to a minimum mkay cupcake? Thannnnks.

      • Peej, Is the J.Cole/Kendrick collabo floating around the Internet going to be a real thing or some kind of hip-hop lover fantasy like Jay Electronica?

        • Lea Thrace

          Poor Jay Electronica. SMH

          • I should write a hip hop parody of “American Gods” explaining how Electronica will exist as long as he’s conjured up in the minds of a few.

            • Lea Thrace

              I will be first in line to purchase it. Cause American Gods is in my top 5 favorite books (cannot wait for the tv series!) and cause Jay Electronica slander is never not funny.

        • Damon Young

          people are fantasizing about j. cole being involved in something?

        • panamajackson

          I will say that that cover looks authentic. But who knows. Neither has confirmed (or denied) it. I will say that the buzz is enough to make J. Cole really press Kendrick. He’s really the only one who stands to gain from this.

        • miss t-lee

          This sounds like something I would never listen to.

          • I’m still trying to get “To Pimp a Butterfly” but it probably just not in me.

            • miss t-lee

              I listened exactly once.

        • kris b.

          Im almost over Jay Elect. Like, I don’t care how philosophical or well-placed those bars may be, you’re taking too long to drop. I just realized I got up on him in 2008 and aint heard nothing new other than shiny suit theory. Sorry for the rant.

          • miss t-lee

            He’s on Maxwell status with me right now.

          • Medium Meech

            I have around 100 Jay Elec songs on my phone right now. Google his complete discography and download it. I don’t think better in tune with the infinite, road to perdition, kingdom and a few others are on there but he has some music out.

            • kris b.

              Oh trust when I found him I dug for all of that. I was just referring to a complete opus. Just expressing my frustration with the delay. I know artist like him demand alot of themselves, but sheesh. Come on already.

          • Has it really been SEVEN years since Jay Electronica burst on the scene and was supposed to come out with an album? #Detox

        • they’ve discussed it for years but Cole has a chance to make that next step and he really needs to focus on that. It’s like when Kanye got too big do that CRS album

      • It really was mediocre, it sounds like a bunch of songs n*ggas made in 6 days, they was going in the booth and making two different songs

      • Brandon Allen

        Drake Future is trash huh? Drizzy burning himself out.

        • Brass Tacks

          Drake didn’t really find his footing on the album until like 6 or 7 songs in. I think he has trouble riding beats with heavy bass lines. Future cranked it though, mainly because the album was produced by Metro. Its more like a Future mixtape ft. Drake.

    • LadyIbaka

      Wait. I’m so glad he got the deal. How else would I have known I have trap queen potential?

    • MzUze

      Columbus k?-?l?m-b?s-. verb.
      Love it.

    • MysteryMeat

      #spotifylife

    • Kelly Kell

      what’s his spotify username?

  • LadyIbaka

    Shoo, when Trap Queen came out, Fetty had me at hey wassup hello. His one eyed trap king looking self was phenomenally alluring.

    • GLAMCAM

      My mama told my sister she bet not brang no one eyed boy home. I hollered. This reminded me of that conversation.

  • miss t-lee

    I’ve listened to it a few time since last Friday. It’s mostly been background noise while I’m working.
    “How We Do Things” and “Jugg” go.
    The rest? Ehhhh.

    Was you feeling Big Grams?

    • panamajackson

      I think I did like Big Grams.

      • miss t-lee

        I’m still on the fence.
        Love both artists separately. Together, I’m like…ok.

        • Mwangangi

          That’s me too. I like-like two of those joints though.

          • miss t-lee

            A solid two.

    • Listened to Big Grams at the gym last night. Not bad although I’m completely unfamiliar with Phantograms. Run the Jewels presence helped too.

      • miss t-lee

        If you dig their style of music, their albums are pretty good.
        Apparently they did some writing/producing on Big Boi’s last two solo albums.

  • IsitFridayyet?

    My taste in rap is rather um…basic so I thought his album was okay. I mainly like when he says “Squaw!”.

    As for #4 this whole time I thought Fetty was saying “girrrrrrrllll baby.” The more you know.

    • Val

      “Squaw”? Like the derogatory word for Native American women? That “Squaw”?

      • IsitFridayyet?

        No. It’s an ad-lib. In reality I think he’s saying “Squad”, but with his pronunciation it sounds like “squaw” to me.

        • Val

          OIC. Got it. I just was wandering why he would’ve pulled that word out of thin air.

  • I try to get in to new music but there’s always this voice saying “You could be listening to the Black Album right now.”

    • QuirlyGirly

      I’m like that too. I know there is good new music out there I just dont have the energy to sort thru the bad to get to the good stuff.

  • Soooo is it safe to say this new trap&b music is the auditory equivalent of a Monet?

    • Is this a Clueless reference?

      • Yes. Also an Art History reference…because #Artist

        • Pretty sure you’re the only person who will ever compare Trap Queen to Water Lillies.

          • LOL It’s beautiful…if you’re not paying attention.

            • JamesInstagram

              And the brilliance of “My Way?” “The last album he put out. Barely even made it out….ANDHEDUMBASHELLISWEARHISASSDON’TTHINK.”

          • Jennifer

            But, I love her for trying.

  • Fetty seems like a nice guy so I wish him success. This album seems like it has no replay value so I’ll pass.

    • QuirlyGirly

      Especially if all the songs sound the same

    • its an album you can play beginning to end but not for the good reason, but rather you dont remember which song was the good one. I didnt hate Bryson Tiller or K Camp’s albums, I can’t tell you what songs I liked on them either

    • GLAMCAM

      He was on the radio station circuit in LA and he should pass on all interviews. It was painful to listen to him try to answer questions. Very monosyllabic.

  • Dougie

    nah… people are really listening to this? like as a real thing?

    I can’t believe Fetty Wap is really the first artist ever to have 4 singles in the top 20. EVER.

    What is really going on with music right now?… I do like all his singles though. I’ll listen to them when they’re on the radio. I’m ok with missing out on this masterpiece of an album, i guess.

    • Dougie

      All that being said, i got Lil Dicky on repeat. I’d rather at least listen to clever bars.

      • panamajackson

        BETTA SAVE THAT MONEY!

      • I’m feelin Lil Dicky! Maybe he will un-Meek the Philadelphia name!

        • Dougie

          hahaha who knows, but I fawks with Lil Dicky (pause?). I feel like he’s every white guy I hung out with in college and every co-worker that I went to happy hours with.

          • Yeah, I feel like he and I would be play cousins and it wouldn’t be weird at all. He is so Cheltenham.

      • Lea Thrace

        Lil Dicky is my new spirit animal!

        • I guess I gotta Google this cat on my day off…

          • Nahknee_nanee

            You and me both. I’m sitting here stuck. Wishing I could participate. Then again that’s me every time a music discussion comes up in the comments. Back to lurking I go.

    • panamajackson

      I’m not surprised by his chart success. Which is why I mentioned Waka from a few years ago. He had a similar run that was like, WTF just happened here.

      • Dougie

        That’s true. But I think I had the same response. I went nuts to him in the clubs and blasted it when I heard him on the radio every 5 songs, but I spared my ears the EP.

      • I think once you got passed the worse rap moniker in the history of rap, Waka had Gucci’s buzz behind him, ladies found him attractive, and it banged in the club, it made perfect sense

        • Epsilonicus

          Waka gets mad play in EDM circles. And most of the time he just performs his most hardcore club bangers

  • I’m happy for Fetty because it makes my reggaeton aspirations that much more tangible.

    Also all this Moscato libel is giving me a complex. I might switch to white sangria.

    • Siante

      Girl, dont let these bougie negroes “moscato-shame” you! Lol

      • lol Thank you. I’ll wave my moscato flag proud… In the corner… With the light beer drinkers…

        • QuirlyGirly

          I’ll be in the corner with you waiting to wave the moscato flag.

          You see the way my constitution is set up…

      • JamesInstagram

        Moscato should be the gateway wine, leading to more complex wines. But folks stay stuck on it.
        http://33.media.tumblr.com/81b4521acd2ba613ded1b4577707c695/tumblr_n5kk104rjs1ql5yr7o1_500.gif

        • Siante

          Lol, I enjoy high brow wines, but it won’t stop me from enjoying the more sophisti-ratchet selections when I’m in the mood for it *sips some bubbly pink moscato*

          • Okay, I give a damb if you think I’m highbrow or not if I want something that tastes goodt, I’m drinking Moscato. And I still keep Kool Aid in the fridge for such occasions. Judge away. No fecks given.

            • Siante

              love it!

  • Brass Tacks

    This new wave TrapnB is not rap. Not in a traditional Boom Baps, 808’s, and Speaker tweeters of my childhood sense.

    Fetty’s cool. I like the songs I’ve heard. Im not buying his album because from Fetty to Thugger, they all sound like one off Future clones.

    Anyways! *Turns volume back up on March Madness* Praise Free Bandz!

    • thats what happen with these new waves (crunk, snap, screwed, soul samples) one artist gets heralded as the champion and everyone else is dismissed as clones whether its valid or not.

      • Brass Tacks

        I don’t think they are all untalented. The Dboy Crooner lane was covered by Future (who essentially strong armed it from T-Pain) years ago.

        Thugger, Fetty, and to a lesser extent R.H.Quan. All seem to be imitating the Future Vandross sound with varying degrees of success.

        • i tend to prefer artists who actually have a semblance of vocal talent. I rather Ty Dolla Sign than Young Thug.

          • Brass Tacks

            I prefer everyone listed above Young Thug. His “movement” isn’t something I would place my brand behind. Simply because I don’t get it, not that I’m really trying all that hard.

        • QuirlyGirly

          Future Vandross–I died!

          • Fetty Jackson

            • Epsilonicus

              Fetty Pendergrass

    • Epsilonicus

      Future reminds of T-Pain. It is all cyclical.

      • Brass Tacks

        Future gets me into a certain state of mind, that these other artist don’t. If I wanted to turnup. I could simply swap a number of these artists music out and end up with the same emotional mean.

        • LadyIbaka

          What state of mind? Future doesn’t articulate, so therefore I’m concerned for your mental wellness.

          • Brass Tacks

            Future articulates very well. He’s no Andre 3000 ( I mean, who is?) so the minutiae of his words, may fail to stick with certain audiences. I came of age during the Crunk era so I don’t need Future to drop pearls I can easily find on an Outkast album. I use his codeine and sprite fueled angst as a way to sort through my own b.s.

            • LadyIbaka

              Do you bew bew, do you!

      • Jennifer

        Does that mean we should look out for Future’s acoustic NPR Tiny Desk Concert in years to come when he isn’t as big as he used to be?

        • Epsilonicus

          I thought so.

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