“Black and Yellow”

The number six song on the iTunes top 10 this week is “Black and Yellow” by none other than Wiz Khalifa.  If you know hip-hop music you know Wiz Khalifa. If you do not you might be unfamiliar with him. For the most part Wiz Khalifa has remained underground producing nine mix-tapes and two studio albums. Perhaps the greatest thing about Wiz Khalifa is his mix-tapes because they are free. That’s right downloadable online for no cost. Different from his peers and contemporaries it is not all about the money for Wiz. That is not to say he is not trying to make money in this business but “Black and Yellow” is his first taste of mainstream popularity. “Black and Yellow” is his first song to hit the billboard top 10 and is more or less his coming out party. The intro lyrics to the song are indicative of just that.

“Yeah ah ha, you know what it is

everything I do, I do it big

Yeah ah ha, screaming thats nothin

when I pulled out of the lot, thats stuntin”

Right out of the gates he is letting you know who he is and what he is all about. Being a rap star he lives a life of extravagance and whatever he does he is going to do it with the utmost flare and by the time he is done people are going to know who he is because of the way he did things. The second thing to notice this song is clearly the title and repetition of black and yellow in the chorus. Most rap artists support the town they are from be it New York, Los Angeles, or Atlanta by sporting gear, usually at most by wearing a flat bill of their cities sports teams. Wiz Khalifa takes it to a whole other level with his tribute to his hometown of Pittsburgh. The city of Pittsburgh has three major sports teams: the Steelers, the Penguins, and the Pirates all of whom have the same color scheme. Yup you guessed it, black and yellow. In his extravagance Wiz takes the support of his hometown teams farther than most other rap stars. The lyrics of the song speak about his black and yellow accessories.

“Reppin my town when you see me you know everything

Black and yellow, black and yellow

Black and yellow, black and yellow

I put it down from my whip to my diamonds

Black and yellow, black and yellow

Black and yellow, black and yellow

Black and yellow, black and yellow”

The lyrics talk about his watches and jewelry being decked out black and yellow diamonds and in the video his black and yellow whip he mentions is a new Chevy Camaro. Also mentioned in the song are two things that will be mentioned in virtually all Wiz songs. Marijuana and the Taylor Gang. Wiz is an avid and open marijuana user and many of his songs and album titles are about this use. Secondly, he belongs to the Taylor Gang of Pittsburgh, and as Wiz becomes more popular so will his saying “Taylor Gang or die” generally he says it in intros or outros to his songs but it is a phrase to become accustomed with because as his popularity grows so does the popularity of this phrase. In my eyes one of the biggest signs that Wiz has made in terms of the mainstream are the offshoot parodies that have come from this song. Be it the black and mild version, the green and white version MSU users have posted on Facebook, or the pink and purple version that has become popular with my dorm buddies. His climb on the iTunes is atypical of most. Rather than peaking and slowly fizzling out it has steadily climbed on the charts indicating he is here to stay and I could not be happier about it.

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