Imaginary Players | Jay-Z
Straightahead, to-the-point, and utterly ruthless: Jigga’s first verse in the smoothed-out, R&B-flavored, ego-fueled ode to raw capitalist/competitive triumph cuts up the competition in an enfilade of insult, braggadocio, and the best of brash bombast. You’re beer money, he’s all-year-money. I mean, what the fuh?
The kid goes in, and shoots his way out without ever losing control in a conversational cadence of colloquial cool. He presents his flow, and its signature, ineffable je-ne-sais-quoi, as dope itself — that heavy head nod diesel: “I spit the hottest shit, you-need-it-I-got-it shit” — this is the best of street-meets-beat: the hustler-bard, cocaine-slanger to crooning rap urban cowboy Cool.
Jay structures his rhyme scheme as a series of three-punch combinations. Two jabs lead up to a sweeping, lights-out hook: “You beer money, I’m all year money, I’m Papi-you-ain’t-gotta-count-it-it’s-all-there money.”
Again: I got blood money, straight up thug money, That brown-paper-bag-under-your-mattress-drug money.”
Straight to the gut. He’s got more than you, he earned it. He’s better than you. And is you. So smarten up, and get your stacks to his level. Before you run around thinking you got something on him.
Dick-riding? Nah. Riding with doe, 4 shore.
“I spit that other shit
That’s the nice motherfucker shit
Fed time follow me around, deep cover shit nigga
You beer money, I’m all year money
I’m Papi-you-ain’t-gotta-count-it-it’s-all-there money
I never change money ’cause niggas got strange money
Narc’ed-up-marked-up, fucked-up-in-the-game money
I got bail money, XXL money
You got flash-now-but-time-will-reveal money
I spit the hottest shit, you need it I got it shit
That down South Master P, Bout It Bout It shit
I got blood money, straight up thug money
That brown-paper-bag-under-your-mattress-drug money
You got show dough, little to no dough
Sell a bunch of records and you still owe dough
I got 900 and 96 plus 4 more dough
You crazy, you fugazi, and loco with dough papo”