What does it mean to be a “gangsta” (noun), and is it possible to be gangsta (adjective) without a gun? On this musical episode of The Axiom Amnesia Theory, Heit & Cheri explore the idea of gangstas, gangsta lifestyle, materialism, gun violence, and the ultimate struggle to survive via their commentary and analysis of “Gangsta” by Kat Dahlia and “No Guns Allowed” by Snoop Lion featuring Cori B and Drake.

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  • Heit & Cheri discuss their decision to bring back the music shows on a weekly basis.

kat-dahlia-album

Song 1: “Gangsta” – Kat Dahlia

[Hook]
You say you a gangsta, that don’t impress me none
You say you a gangsta, ain’t seen a thing you done
I do it all on myself, I ain’t getting help
From no one, from no one

Yeah I’m young, 21, living in a crazy world
But I know the difference between a man and a herb
You frontin like you got it, claim they hittin on your wallet
Gucci tellin you the time and you watch it,
Now I ain’t stuntin like my daddy, he’s livin with my grammie
Used to be a big baller, he’s survivin off of gamblin
But I love him, he’s my daddy, yeah I love him he’s my daddy
Put him in a big house, before I ever see a grammy

And my mommy started working days at the church
Finding faith in God ’cause the real world hurts
So much evil lurks, they just make us work
But we can’t find work
Abuella, mommy and the girls, in a one bedroom
South beach lifestyle, they just paying for the view
Mommy on the couch, since she was 42
Sacrificing for the kids, ’cause that’s what mommys do
So I smoke my spliff, I spliff it hard
Candy says to stop, my voice is getting too harsh
So I sobered up, and my thoughts they rush
And now I think of you behind bars
Cross state lines, they spliffin’ good
In Miami you catch a charge
And the whole family tears apart

[Hook] x 2
You say you a gangsta, that don’t impress me none
You say you a gangsta, ain’t seen a thing you done
I do it all on myself, I ain’t getting help
From no one, from no one

And this recession’s so depressin
My parents don’t stop stressin
Just hopin I learned all their lessons
And I’m paying for this session
I’m paying for this session
And I’m paying rent, food, clothes, phone, christmas presents
6 shots in, I’m just countin all my blessings
No days off baby I ain’t restin
I told my sins, now I’m done confessin

[Hook] x 2
You say you a gangsta, but that don’t impress me none
You say you a gangsta, ain’t seen a thing you done
I do it all on myself, I ain’t getting help
From no one, from no one

On way to the top, I make with what I got
You want my number baby, I’m on a mission, catch up
Men sellin love like thieves
But when the girlie leaves, he’ll stop flirtin with me
So I took my heart off my sleeve
Never trust a man ’cause they all hungry
Yeah they all hungry
Never trust a man ’cause they all hungry

Right when you thought you had me
Baby you just lost someone
Finally got over you, baby time to move on
Never learned your lesson, ain’t even gonna question
Why it went so wrong
Right when you thought you had me
Baby you just lost someone
Finally got over you, baby time to move on
Never learned your lesson, ain’t even gonna question
Why it went so wrong

You say you a gangsta, that don’t impress me none
You say you a gangsta, ain’t seen a thing you done

  • The delivery and the lyrics of this song are awesome!
  • The beat has the fusion of Hip Hop and Soul at the same time. She delivers the songlike a rap song, which allows her to get a lot of lyrics into the song.
  • Heit & Cheri both liked the lyrics:

    Now I ain’t stuntin like my daddy, he’s livin with my grammie
    Used to be a big baller, he’s survivin off of gamblin
    But I love him, he’s my daddy, yeah I love him he’s my daddy
    Put him in a big house, before I ever see a grammy

  • Cheri also liked the part where Kat talks about her mother and her connection to religion. So many people go to church for some semblance of hope–they’re searching for something and go to church to feel better about the condition.

    And my mommy started working days at the church
    Finding faith in God ’cause the real world hurts

  • Discussion about Kat saying that she confessed everything and now she’s done confessing.
  • Discussion about Kat’s other songs and how this song stands out.
  • Discussion about the lyric where she says that people are just paying for the view in the South Beach lifestyle. A lot of people can’t even pay for the views

    South beach lifestyle, they just paying for the view

  • Discussion about the materialistic culture explored in the lyrics “Gucci telling you the time and you watch it.” They are telling you both the literal and figurative time, what you should be wanting in your life, and you’re watching it.
  • Discussion about the relationship aspect of the song.
  • Discussion about the person who is basically posing as a gangsta, rather than actually being a gangsta–taking control of your environment.
  • Discussion about Kat saying that she’s on her way to the top and the guy posing as a gangsta is actually behind her.
  • Discussion about the duality of the line
  • Discussion about the Spanish version of the song. Cheri preferred the Spanish because it seems more natural and smooth. Heit liked the English version better because of the roughness of her voice.
  • Gangsta is gangsta no matter the language.
  • Discussion about listening to a song that is in a foreign language and not being able to understand the lyrics. Think about people who live in other countries, but listen to American music and don’t speak English.
  • Discussion about people learning to speak English by listening to the music and watching American TV.
  • Discussion about material pursuits in life and the question of whether our ideals align with the way we have chosen to live our lives. We say material things are not important, but we set up our lives in such a way that we are enslaved into maintaining a lifestyle of excess. If we can figure out how to minimize our lifestyle such that we don’t have to participate in wage slavery. Of course, people need to be able to distinguish between wants and needs.

snoop lion

Song 2: “No Guns Allowed” – Snoop Lion Featuring Cori B. and Drake

[Verse 1: Snoop Lion & Cori B]
Money makes a man and that’s a crime
If we all were rich we’d spend more time
With our daughters and sons, they’re loosing their minds
We all feel hurt here’s mine, here me now

[Chorus: Snoop Lion & Cori B]
Cause, no guns are allowed in here tonight
We’re gonna have a free for all, no fights
I wanna get lost in the crowd in here tonight
I need to hear my thoughts turn the music up loud

[Hook: Snoop Lion]
Let the music play, me don’t want no more gun-play
When the bodies hit the ground, there’s nothing let to say ay ay
Me don’t want to see no more innocent blood shed
Me don’t want to see no more youth dead
Come hear me now

[Chorus:]

[Verse 2: Drake]
Yeah, yeah, yeah, news from back home
This is when it hurts to be gone
Two more young names to be carved out of stone
one summer day that went horribly wrong
Got my dawg on the phone
Crying and saying to leave him alone
But I’m not leaving his side
I know that somebody died, somebody’s child
Some people ducked down and some people hide
Some people just cannot react in time
Bullets do not choose a victim
It is the shooter that picks them
They just cant wait to get you in the system
The district attorney could use a conviction
Told you no guns and then you didn’t listen
Life is so heavy with that on your soul
Dedicate this to Shayne and Josh
and pour something out for the lives that they stole
416

[Chorus:]

[Outro: Snoop Lion & Cori B]
Money makes a man and that’s a crime [2x]
I wanna get lost in the crowd in here tonight

  • Discussion about Snoop Dogg changing his name to Snoop Lion and taking a more Reggae turn with his music.
  • Discussion about a conversation with Daniel Coffeen in which Heit mentioned people having difficulty viewing others in a different light. People wanted Snoop to do more positive music, yet they criticize him when he tried to do this.
  • cori b snoop lion

  • Cori B is Snoop’s daughter.
  • The song has an awesome message. People were trying to say this song was a gun control song, but they’re wrong. What they’re saying is that there is no NEED to have guns because they are having a good time. This is an anti-violence song, not an anti-gun song.
  • The auto-tuning in this song worked.
  • Cheri liked the hook as her favorite part of the song. Heit liked the line, “If we all were rich, we’d spend more time.” It’s pointing to the point that you don’t need money to be rich, but if you were rich with money, you wouldn’t have to spend your efforts trying to get money–you could just live and spend time doing what you enjoy. this is the envy of people who have money. the money buys things and time. You don’t have to slave away just to maintain yourself.
  • Discussion about Drake’s verse. Heit thinks this is the best verse he’s ever heard from Drake.
  • Discussion about the line, “Bullets do not choose the victim, it’s the shooter that picks them. It is the shooter’s or droner’s decision to take that action that resulted in the injury and or death of others.
  • Discussion about Israel’s bombing of Syria being the same as American taxpayers doing it because that’s who helped to pay for it.

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