|Lil Wayne envisioning his next flight into LaGuardia|
“I don't like New York,” Lil Wayne said earlier this month, following a show he did in the city. His comments came out of his frustration for being arrested and jailed there, he explained. Still, New York State Senator Malcolm Smith promptly held a press conference in Times Square demanding Wayne apologize.
Overreact, much? After all, Wayne is hardly the first artist to speak ill of the Big Apple. Here are five artists who have more eloquently dissed New York in song.
“I Love L.A.” (1983)
Contrary to popular belief, The West Coast-East Coast musical rivalry largely predates the rise of gangsta rap in the '90s. While not the first, perhaps the most blatant shots fired were in Randy Newman's “I Love L.A.” Here, Newman goes much further than Wayne, opening the song with (a possible reference to some pointed words about California in the classic showtune “The Lady is a Tramp”) “I hate New York City, it's cold and it's damp / and all the people dress like monkeys.
Tweedy Bird Loc
“Fuck the South Bronx Nigga, This is Compton” (1992)
Rap's role in this rivalry began heating up in 1991 when Bronx rapper and grand larcenist Tim Dog recorded “Fuck Compton.” The next year, Compton's Tweedy Bird Loc responded with a dis of his own. While turnabout is fair play, it does take a few listens to get past the irony of a rap song having “Fuck the South Bronx” in its title.
Tha Dogg Pound
“New York, New York” (1995)
Another hip-hop assault on the city that never sleeps came from Death Row's Dogg Pound. Using the hook from Grandmaster Flash and the Furious Five's “New York New York,” the verses themselves don't make any particular mentions or allusions to New York. However, the video's imagery of Snoop kicking down a skyscraper is about as strong of a visual New York dis as you can get. Damn, special effects in music videos ain't what they used to be.
“Fuck New York” (2005)
Boston hardcore band Slapshot wear their hometown pride proudly, and few Bostonian traditions are as storied as badmouthing New York. The band celebrated their 20th anniversary together with their 2005 album Tear It Down, which included a little ditty called “Fuck New York,” wishing light-hearted, good-natured malice on the Big Apple and a laundry list of its icons.
“New York” (2009)
In her 2009 single “New York” English singer-songwriter and actress Paloma Faith explored the heartbreak of losing a lover to a far away city. Speaking of NYC as if it were a girl, she claims that the five boroughs “poisoned his sweet mind.” “Poison”? C'mon. One suspects Ms. Faith has never had the joy of a true New York bagel at 3 am on weeknight.