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Song Review: "Hood Melody" by DDG, OG Parker ft. Youngboy Never Broke Again

· Echo on paranoid is a nice touch

· Not to be rude but go away

Disclaimer: I have not been exposed to a lot of rap throughout my lifetime. While a close friend of mine played a lot of Eminem earlier in my youth, the only rap that I have really explored on my own is rap metal, primarily $uicideboy$ and Ghostemane. A significant reason for my lack of knowledge regarding the rap genre is simply because I never found the music to be appealing. While I am a huge music advocate with a broad palette, I simply believe that some music is not for everyone. With that being said, listening to “Hood Melody” was a very foreign experience for me.

In part due to my natural distaste for the genre, I personally did not enjoy listening to this song very much. As I was carefully listening for the song’s musical elements, I quickly realized that perhaps one of the most obvious and noticeable differences between rap and all other musical genres is the emphasis on lyrics. Having a deep admiration for complex and dynamic instrumental progressions, I was disappointed by the lack of musical elements in this track. While the song provides very minimal basslines and a soft piano in the background, the song is driven by lyrics and beats. But I found that even the beats were not so impressive, as there is nothing really unique or impressionable about these simple beat patterns. Diminishing the significance of other musical elements, we are then left to interpret the lyrics.

Beginning with DDG’s chorus, the artist reflects on the relationship between black males and society, regarding opportunities for achievement. For instance, the line, “n****s be tellin’ us if we don’t dribble the ball then maybe a n**** can rap”, refers to the notion that people commonly believe that black people can only achieve success in certain avenues, such as basketball and rap. During the chorus and first verse, the artist raps about the demographic’s association with dealing drugs on the streets, and the perpetual state of danger that such a lifestyle evokes. On a side note, I thought that the echo on “I be too paranoid” was clever in establishing the message. I also really liked the line “not to be rude but ‘go away’”, as I am sure we can all relate to this attitude on one level or another.

Following DDG, YoungBoy Never Broke Again lays down a verse that is centered around his efforts and struggles that he has faced as he has risen to fame. The pain he has endured has made him stronger, and while the world is seemingly out to get him, he strives to protect the life he has created for himself. He reflects on what his life was like before he made a name for himself and he recognizes that he cannot let himself look back, nor does he want to.

The final verse by DDG reemphasizes the previous messages, while rapping about the importance of revenge against enemies for the sake of maintaining justice. The artist raps, “I am not puttin’ my trust in no b***h”, referring to the people who have taken advantage of him and those who have displayed acts of disrespect in the past. Now that he has “made it out the hood”, he is no longer burdened by the constant worry of being attacked or betrayed as he was accustomed to in the past.

Looks like DDG and YoungBoy Never Broke Again are free to reap the fruits of their labor in peace.

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