Home > Music, Postaday2011 > How To Translate Rap Lyrics

How To Translate Rap Lyrics

Ah, rap music – nothing but a feckless, dime-a-dozen street-walking delinquent spouting off nonsense into a cheap microphone. What social value could this music possibly bring to the community? None. None value is the answer. Yet, upon deeper review, the message of the music can be lost in the quirky colloquialisms used by rappers who have been brought up in a variety of different regions and cultures. I will now attempt to decipher some “bars” by a few popular rap artists, in order to find out what they are really trying to tell us.

This art was crafted by me in Microsoft Paint.

Lyric: “Rap ain’t about bustin’ caps and f****n’ b*****s, it’s about fluency and rhyming ingenuity.” -Del the Funky Homosapien of the group Hieroglyphics, from the song At the Helm

Translation: “This musical genre is not intended to be about the reckless use of firearms and holding sexual congress with numerous women. We all must never forget that the cornerstone of crafting a respectable ballad is having a strong command of the English language, which includes possessing a diverse vocabulary, and having the cognitive wherewithal to put that diverse vocabulary to good use by finding new, innovative ways to make words work with each other.”

Lyric: “I want to get hiiiiiiiiigh, sooo hiiiiiiiiiiiiiiigh.” -B-Real of Cypress Hill, from I Wanna Get High

Translation: “I would very much like to ingest an illegal substance, preferably tetrahydrocannabinol, to alter my state of mind. I do this from time to time to alleviate the vexations of stress, depression, and anxiety, but I also do it to bond with others at social gatherings during the weekend.”

Lyric: “I like big butts and I cannot lie.” -Sir Mix-A-Lot, Baby Got Back

Translation: “I favor a gluteus maximus with a large amount of cellulite. I am being completely and utterly honest.”

Lyric: “I bomb atomically, Socrates’ philosophies and hypotheses can’t define how I be droppin’ these mockeries.” -Inspectah Deck of Wu-Tang Clan, from Triumph

Translation: “I am utilizing these hyperbolic military and philosophical metaphors in order to prove that one would be hard-pressed to understand how I have developed such a streamlined system to boast about my poetic prowess.”

Lyric: “I never thought it could happen, this rappin’ stuff, I was too used to packin’ gats and stuff, now honeys play me close like butter played toast.” -Notorious B.I.G., from Juicy

Translation: “Who would have thought that I could forge a career in the music industry, with such a dubious background involving guns and other reprehensible items? Now beautiful women stay near me at all times.”

Lyric: “Change? S**t. I guess change is good for any of us. Whatever it take for any of y’all n****z to get up out the hood. S**t, I’m wit cha, I ain’t mad at cha.” -Tupac, I Ain’t Mad At Cha

Translation: “Alterations? Sheesh. They can be a positive force in our lives. Anything that can help young African Americans find a better life in an affluent neighborhood, I’m all for that. I will not think less of you for pursuing an honorable lifestyle.”

Lyric: “Don’t make me wake this baby, she don’t need to see what I’m about to do, quit crying b***h, why do you always make me shout at you?” -Eminem, Kim

Translation: “It is important that our child does not see that I am about to murder you. Why must you cause a scene, therefore resulting in me having to raise my voice to inappropriate levels?”

Lyric: “My main thug n***a named Julio he moodio, type of n***a that’ll slap you with the toolio, b***h n***a scared to death ask fruity-o, f**k that look at shorty she a little cutie-o, the way she shake it make me want to get all in the booty yo.” Busta Rhymes, Put Your Hands Where My Eyes Can See

Translation: “My best friend Julio has temperamental issues. It is best to not disturb him at this time, or he may act out, aggressively if necessary. Hey wait, look at that woman over there! The manner in which she is dancing makes me want to engage in consensual intercourse with her.”

And there you have it. Here’s the Blong (Blog song). Aesop Rock – None Shall Pass. The sweet irony being that it is a rap music tune in which I have no idea what he is talking about.

  1. Tom Gibson
    April 18, 2011 at 11:21 am

    Here’s another flying skull video-


  2. March 16, 2013 at 3:07 pm

    Swear to God, this drives me nuts.Bleh. Give me some absinthe, some poetry on heavy bass and a decent headbang any day.

  3. April 16, 2013 at 5:05 pm

    This is awesome! Suddenly, my housemate’s Tupac is not nearly so annoying to listen to.

    • April 16, 2013 at 5:17 pm

      See, once you break down the language barrier, we’re all pretty much the same people.

  1. October 12, 2011 at 6:44 pm

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