Way back in the stone age of 2009, when TRU was still in its early years, Riz put up a very tongue-in-cheek and politically incorrect list of rap songs full of misogyny titled “11 Rap Songs To Disrespect Women To.” The crystal clear sarcasm of the intro text still flew over many people’s heads, which is enough to make you worry about humanity’s future, but in a somewhat more disturbing turn of events, it remains as one of TRU’s top posts to this very day. I don’t even want to know what people type into Google to land there. Since it’s still racking up comments on a regular basis, I’d figure the time had come to balance things out a little bit with a companion piece, lest our attempts at humor be used to attack our beloved artform.
Funny thing is, some of the dudes on that original list are on this one too. How’s that for versatility, sometimes they’re disrespectful, sometimes they’re respectful! You’d almost wager these rappers might be regular folk too.
Method Man & Mary J Blige – All I Need
Proof that a bona fide love song can be rugged as fuck.
Shorty I’m there for you anytime you need me
For real girl, it’s me in your world, believe me
Nothing make a man feel better than a woman
Queen with a crown that be down for whatever
There are few things that’s forever, my lady
We can make war or make babies
Back when I was nothing
You made a brother feel like he was something
That’s why I’m with you to this day boo no fronting
Common – The Light
Common vows to never call his special lady a female dog, but what’s even more important is the promise of equality.
Because of you, feelings I handle with care
Some niggas recognize the light but they can’t handle the glare
You know I ain’t the type to walk around with matching shirts
If relationship is effort I will match your work
JJ DOOM – Winter Blues
DOOM has no qualms professing he needs his lady in a song about physical love with a mature tone.
Each and every day making cash with Satan
Can’t eat can’t sleep, it’s exasperatin’
Mad like burning off
All he needs is one warm hug to keep from turning off
2Pac – Keep Ya Head Up
The lyrics really say it all. Not for nothing we used a screencap as the lead graphic.
And when he tells you you ain’t nothin’, don’t believe him
And if he can’t learn to love you, you should leave him
Cause sister, you don’t need him
And I ain’t tryin’ to gas ya up, I just call ‘em how I see ‘em
Mos Def & Talib Kweli – Brown Skin Lady
Yasiin and Talib express their adoration without reservation in a classic cut from their Black Star album.
It’s like I’m standin there you know appreciatin God’s design
And then you showed up, it’s like you read my mind
The Roots – You Got Me ft. Erykah Badu
A song dealing with a relationship falling apart, but never resorting to bitterness. Beautiful melancholy.
Somebody told me that this planet was small
We use to live in the same building on the same floor
And never met before
Until I’m overseas on tour
And peep this Ethiopian queen from Philly
Taking classes abroad
Queen Latifah ft. Monie Love – Ladies First
A list like this without including the ladies representing for themselves would be downright disrespectful.
A woman can bear you, break you, take you
Now it’s time to rhyme, can you relate to
A sister dope enough to make you holler and scream
a Tribe Called Quest – Find a Way
Phife & Tip are very much into a certain lady but they have a hard time trying to find a way out of the friend zone. The confused macks keep it classy all the way.
And let it just happen, make it front-free
Just sweat me like Moneypenny
Digging you, getting inside of your stee
It’s the Quest cat keeping you company
Ghostface Killah Ft. Raekwon & Cappadonna – Camay
Not the first guys you’d think of compiling a list like this, but this joint full off fly pick-up talk knows degradation is no turn-on.
She elegant, pretty eyes, glasses, intelligent
Whispered in my ear that she’s celibate
Whispered back to her ear we don’t have to go there
As I grab the hand set her politely in the chair
As we stopped to stare at one another
Black sister to brother
I’m thinking all the time how she could be my lover
Nas – Daughters
Nas sees the trouble his daughter comes across and his need to protect her as a form of karmic retribution. Yep, all women are someone’s daughter.
And I ain’t tryna mess your thing up
But I just wanna see you dream up
I finally understand
It ain’t easy to raise a girl as a single man
Nah, the way mothers feel for they sons
How fathers feel for they daughters
When he date, he straight, chip off his own papa
When she date, we wait behind the door with the sawed off
‘Cause we think no one is good enough for our daughters
Beastie Boys – Sure Shot
I’ll let MCA handle this one:
I want to say a little something that’s long overdue
The disrespect to women has got to be through
To all the mothers and the sisters and the wives and friends
I want to offer my love and respect to the end