What do I think of Common’s new in-your-face music video for “Sweet”? I’m being 100 percent honest when I say that, for a second there, I thought it was a Funny or Die video.
That’s not intended to be a knock on the song or video, which aren't bad. I’m just not used to Common – who has long been considered a “thinking man’s rapper” – dropping f-bombs left and right and rapping “How can I say this? F*** it, I’m the greatest” and bragging about how he’s “rolling in the Maserati Gran with the lid off.”
(Keep in mind the video was shot in Haiti and the money that the video makes on UStream goes to the J/P Haitian Relief Organization.)
And then there was the non-stop chest pounding and growling at the camera -- a far cry from the grooving and head bobbing we’ve seen Common do in past videos -- and the close-up of the local staring at the camera, blowing smoke out of his nose. The only thing that was missing from the gritty “Sweet” video was the the cliché underground dog fighting shot.
Obviously, Common is allowed to take his music in any direction he’d like. And he doesn’t need to live up to his reputation just to please the public. But you can’t blame me for getting caught off guard when Common, known for promoting positivity, is calling people out for not being hard enough.
Remember, there’s a reason anyone familiar with Common’s work laughed when Fox News labeled him as “vile” and “controversial.”
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