self

self

So Series Sundays are back and this time around I’m writing about the songs from the projects of my favorite rapper, Noname. I decided to include songs from What the Fuck is a Noname Gypsy?, Telefone, and Room 25. I really want the theme of this Series Sunday to represent self-love and self-discovery. I think that’s a little obvious since I chose Room 25‘s opening song.

“Maybe this the album you listen to in your car
When you driving home late at night
Really questioning every god, religion, Kanye, bitches”

When I first heard these opening lines, I knew that this was going to be a project I related to on a different level. I had already read the interview she had done with the Fader that we released a few days before the release of Room 25. Noname revealed that this album is different because she’s just in a different space than she was when she wrote Telefone. I love that “Self” starts Room 25 off with a little self-reflection, especially since I do love to listen to this album while I’m driving and thinking about the things going on around me. I feel as though 2019 is a huge year of self-reflection for me, as well as acting on what I’ve reflected on and how to improve as a person. As said in the Fader, “Room 25 weaves together the story of her nascent adulthood” and I feel like Room 25 is currently doing the same for me.

Photo from The Fader

“Y’all really thought a bitch couldn’t rap huh?
Maybe this your answer for that, a crack era
The Reagan administration that niggas are still scared of
Nah actually this is for me
This one for TT at the lake serving the mac and the cheese
This one a small apology for all the calls that I screened

I love the first line of this because it just speaks to me as seen in my “19 songs for new beginnings” post. All my life, I’ve felt the need to prove something to someone so I really connected with Noname there. In her interview with The Fader, she mentioned how many of her listeners see her as this conscious rapper as if she’s the anti-Cardi but she really wants to get away from this perception because she’s just herself and like everyone else, has her Cardi tendencies.

When it comes to the latter of the end of the first verse, I really started to understand the meaning of this song. With the start of “Nah, actually this is for me,” I’m reminded of the fact that at the end of the day, I have to be happy with everything I’m doing and everything I’m putting out there for the world to see. The opinions of others don’t really matter because this is my life and everything I do is for me. However, it’s also for the people that are often forgotten (“This one for TT at the lake serving the mac and the cheese”) like the several black women, men, and children who are being ignored when it comes to education (you can donate to Bennett College here), health, and the fact that FLINT STILL DOESN’T HAVE CLEAN WATER (you can donate to the Flint Water Fund here). Noname also issues an apology for all the people she’s been ignoring while trying to get her shit together and I felt that after these past couple months of only really talking to people who I felt understood me or everything I was going through. If I ignored you recently, I’m so sorry, I’ve been trying to get my life together. I also changed my number so maybe you just missed out on that announcement lol.

Photo from The Fader

“Fucked your rapper homie, now his ass is making better music
My pussy teachin ninth-grade English
My pussy wrote a thesis on colonialism
In conversation with a marginal system in love with Jesus
And y’all still thought a bitch couldn’t rap huh?
Maybe this your answer for that, good pussy
I know niggas only talk about money and good pussy”

Circling back to the fact that we all have some Cardi tendencies, Noname brought in this new project by taking the time to be a little more vulgar than usual. Noname revealed that she lost her virginity between the release of Telefone and writing of Room 25, so Room 25 is more revealing and less PG than Telefone as a whole.

Noname takes the final verse of “Self” to reflect on her new adulthood experiences involving her newfound sexual freedom and how it has affected her creativity as well as the creativity of ours. This verse shocked me at first but as I went into the new year, newly single and recently fresh from binge-watching Sex and the City, I’m starting to understand it more and really appreciate Fatimah for being so open and vulnerable.

Overall, this opener to Room 25 is the perfect opener to realizing who you are and who you are becoming as you get older and that’s why I selected to kick off this Series Sunday of self-love. Stay tuned for next Sunday, where I’ll be writing about “Hold Me Up” by Noname from What the Fuck is a Noname Gypsy?

What is the song that sends you into a spiral of self-reflection? Let me know in the comments below.

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