By: Tommy Rodriguez
One of my favorite things to do is play chauffeur for my little brother whenever he needs to be driven somewhere. Our rides throughout South Florida are one of the few times in our hectic lifestyles where we aren’t separated because of soccer practice or endless writing sessions.
“Take me far and far, this ain’t just my carBig KRIT rapping about his car, a place where he bonded with his father over rap music, is a perfect summation of how car music can bind people together…
This my Time Machine”
Our road trips aren’t just simple times on the street; they’re vehicles to bond with people in the passenger seat. My older brother taught me this lesson way back, when he drove me to school. Together we dove headfirst into the pool of cough syrup in Future’s backyard, attended Travis Scott’s Rodeo, and struggled to decipher Young Thug’s godly vocal inflections. He’s the one who got me into hip hop, and now as my brother grows up, I see how music passes through one sibling to another. Now I’m the one showing my brother the art form…
What kind of hip hop do we play when we drive together? We play the based music of Lil B the Based God, of course.
Why listen to Lil B, you ask? The answer is relatively simple: his-out of-this-dimension persona, eclectic and experimental edge, and nonchalant swagger is simply joyous to behold. Prior to playing Lil B for my little brother, hip hop seemed to be nothing more than some mere background noise as he played on his DS. Upon hearing the ever so catchy, lo-fi odyssey of “Monky Knot”, lil’ bro instantly noticed the brazen chaos of the track. He loved his first time hearing the rollercoaster of a song. Upon its finish, he simply looked at me, eyes wide with curiosity, and asked:
“What was that?”
“That, was Lil B!”
Now, as we journey into the world of Lil B’s infinitely expanding discography, my little brother and I have begun to bond over something we never talked about together. We talk about the beats of Lil B’s songs, discussing how crazy or memorable they are. Sometimes we rate the songs on a scale of 1-10, with my little brother dropping the ever rare 10 on the disco-tinged “100 Percent on B****** Freestyle”.
As downright bizarre as Lil B’s music is at times, the enjoyability of it never truly goes away. There’s always something to notice, something to catch your attention. My little brother loves the constant “yeaaaaahs” of Lil B’s more rap centric tracks, and loves pointing out the trademark positivity on his many tracks. Hell, he’s even memorized a few parts of his cinematic “Made Man” skit, cracking up with me as we look back on Lil B’s billion dollar music recording contract.
Perhaps his young age makes him more open to the “Based” Music Lil B makes: it’s a type of music that you need to go into a different mindset in when you’re an older, more cynical hip hop head. Nonetheless, my little brother and I have now found common ground where we didn’t have before. Now, we know that music is a bridge across the gap that six years can make, a gap that can only widen as we get older if we can’t find common ground.
Lil B’s aforementioned eccentricity as an artist is something that my little brother has picked up on, and as I continue to drive him to and from his friends’ houses, I see him noticing more and more musical nuances. He’s now showing signs of liking other music, radio hits and occasional playlist romps. The odd side of the Based God, I believe, has shown him to continue striving forward to listen to more music, to appreciate the artistry in every second of a song. Even if the song is as hilarious as “10000 Blunts and Countin” or catchy as “Wonton Soup”.
The best thing about our journey into Lil B’s music together, is simply lil’ bro’s smile. Whenever he smiles at a hilarious Lil B punchline, or nods his head at a surprisingly infectious (if not different) instrumental, I know that together we’re having a blast. The car is always a welcome destination for me and my little bro; if we’re ever out of things to do, I know we can have a good time listening to Lil B the Based God.
Thank you Based God! And thank you, Lil’ Bro!