“Stupid with the raps, but the raps never stupid…”
You can tell a true emcee when you question the integrity of their art. They won’t respond by talking about the vastness of their material possessions or financial accolades. They’ll passionately explain to you why their art matters, and it’s partly due to the fact it’s an extension of their very souls. And with that in mind, the latest to give such a lesson is Lupe Fiasco, who gave some food for thought to Soulja Boy on ”S.L.R. (Super Lupe Rap).”
The song it itself is an answer to Soulja Boy’s statements in the latest edition of XXL magazine, claiming that no one wants to be “super duper lyrical” like Lupe Fiasco. The lyrics are rich with imagery and nods to Malcom X, Cornel West, and Nas’ It Was Written intro. There’s nothing pretentious, just straight lyrical poetry. There are lines that directly address Soulja, but not in a combative nature. It’s more so for Lupe to clarify that he’s not just making intricate rhymes with no purpose (“Soulja calls it Super Lupe lyrical/You can’t understand me/Nor mimic my miracles…”). Lupe also throws in an allusion to one of Lil Wayne’s punchline techniques to emphasize the difference between the intellectual weight of his work compared to his peers (“Being dope is all in the muscle/ It’s more than just a pause and a chuckle/ I bench press elephants and bowling ball juggle..”).
The theme of Lupe’s lyrical exercise is abundantly clear; why would you not want to be “super duper lyrical” like him? Why would you not want your art to hold significant meaning that has a lasting impact on your peers and the culture? As I said earlier, this song is akin to a creative debate rather than a diss record. Unfortunately, Soulja Boy is probably not equipped with the means to offer an adequate rebuttal.
LUPE FIASCO “S.L.R. (SUPER LUPE RAP)” (PRODUCED BY SOUNDTRAKK)