Dress For Less

Rick Ross: "Down and Out"

"You know my motto: Get rich in the game." -- Rick Ross, "Before Da Limelight"

People--rappers, bloggers--are actually getting behind this clown. Huh. He can make words rhyme and "times funny now/ guess it's about the money now" comes out like bubble letters, the Os blown out and Ts cut hard and that flow oh so indebted to Biggie but where's the charisma. Ross and Businessman-Z alike will push Ross as Miami talent, seems, the heat (ahem) on as always to find your next Houstons and Bay Areas and New Orleans. And maybe Miami is that that; 'Ross is the other side of Miami, the dirtier grimier side of the city nobody done heard about,' ya dig. But what I hear is: yayo, east coast slang, zero regional signposting save an area code and a T-Pain ref, and Pain's from fucking Tallahassee.

In other words, Ross is about the part of Miami that is exactly like every other fucking city in the world. Which is frustrating. He has access to so much crazy shit down there--why shy away from it? When are we going to get a rap about the M3 conference? The ongoing, unchecked genocide of our senior citizens? The weaponry store I found two years ago where theoretically I could have walked out with an enormous Japanese sword, the handle of which was covered with several mini-swords? You don't need me to connect the dots.

Heretofore Jay's curatorship has tended to half-formed artists in budding scenes but with incomplete identities, no? Remember Aztec? Is the guy's point defiantly reductionist, as if to say every new region sorta is the same as the last? Or is he just a clown himself? To wit, Ross has changed the name of his forthcoming LP (and it follows, the focus of his appeal) pretty much every time there's a new article about him, first Port of Miami, then Career Criminal, eventually (we hope) some combination of the two like Career Pirate or Criminal Port, a concept album about killer dessert wine.

Now I'm gonna wrap this up with a fantastic conclusion.

This is a "Down and Out" freestyle, but all is not lost. "Lunch with E-Class, Puffy on the cell, Timbaland sending emails from 'Ville/ See, I'm well connected." So that's what Timbaland's up to.