Before we go any further, we have to show some more love to… dare I say… the hip hop album of the year.
Lupe’s a genius storyteller, guys. I mean, we all knew that. But I’m still amazed at not one, but two tracks across Drogas Waves that reimagine the lives of newborns taken too soon and too tragically.
Speaking of Genius, after the first couple of listens on your own, you’ll want to follow along, song-by-song and pick up references like this one (via our own @hetalbot). Lupe continues to reference Canada in Alan’s reimagined story because his family wanted asylum in Canada. And the more references like that you catch, the more we see that next-level where only Lupe resides.
“Jonylah Forever”, after Jonylah Watkins, a 6-month old baby tragically succumbing to crossfire gunshots, was originally released shortly after her death in 2013.
The one reference I didn’t catch until five years later was the Jimmy Neutron/neutron term for not being gang affiliated in Chicago.
Sadly, “Jonylah” has even more of a somber tone and now I have the feels all over again. There’s much more I want to write about the album as I, still a week later, want to continue to digest. Until then, sit back, and listen to these back to back (and out of order). Maybe the connection will be even clearer…
“I bet you didn’t know that you saved yourself…”
Lord have mercy.