Luda, Oh Ludacris…

Ludacris

lu·di·crous
[loo-di-kruhs]
– adjective 1. ridiculous

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I had great hope for Ludacris. Here is a rapper from Atlanta that doesn’t take himself too seriously. He’s very tongue-in-cheek, very smart-alec’y. He knows what his image is and he works it to his advantage. Did I mention that he can rap? I thought that Ludacris would bring something substantial and viable to the Atlanta scene. I believe that Ludacris did bring something fresh and new out, at least for a while. His guest spots were phenomenal, something I looked forward to on every radio remix…

Hit the jump for more.

Phat Rabbit and some of his other songs he did with Timbo are top-notch. “Word of Mouf” is a banger, still, ten years later. “Saturday”, “Move Bitch”, “Area Codes”… The tracklisting of Word of Mouf is like a trip down memory lane to high school for me. I still know every word to those songs; they’re classics. “Back for the First Time” had some classics on it also, like “Phat Rabbit” and “Southern Hospitality”. His cameo on P.A.’s CD was a fitting choice for a radio celebrity, Ludacris had DJ’d while attending Georgia State University in Atlanta.

Fast forward a couple of years.

His next CD after “Word of Mouf” was “Chicken and Beer”. It was a valiant effort for a CD, but fell short on a couple of fronts. If you’re anything like me, the songs off of this CD were floating around on your iPod for a while but there wasn’t anything strong enough to warrant a permanent place on a playlist. “Stand Up”, “Splash Waterfalls”, “Act a Fool”, “Pussy Poppin'”… Mehhhh…. They sounded over-produced, like the record label said to Ludacris, “HEY BITCH! YOU’RE GONNA MAKE MUSIC LIKE WE WANT YOU TO MAKE IT!”. Ludacris had started his descent into becoming a label’s bitch. I will hand this to him, the song “Yeah!” was great, thanks to the support of Usher and Lil’ Jon. I have fond memories of listening to this song at Firehouse in Athens circa 2003-2005, partying up a storm.

Fast forward another year.

“The Red Light District” comes out; along with the CD comes the top single “Number One Spot”, that song that sampled the Austin Powers theme. Really? That’s kitschy if anything ever was. It was just cheesy, too overdone, like garden gnomes. “Blueberry Yum Yum” was the only song worth listening to from this album in my arrogant opinion. The rest of the CD, again, sounded overproduced.

Fast forward two more years.

“Release Therapy” comes out in 2006. Did you even listen to this CD? Neither did I. The only notable thing about Ludacris’ career during these years was the song “Runaway Love”. This was his first foray into a darker side of rap. I, personally, fucking hated the song. It was on constant rotation at every radio station for months. UGH.

Fast forward two more years, again.

“Theater of the Mind” comes out. I was reading about this CD while researching for this blog post. It dawned on me that I had never heard of any of the songs from this CD… Which was released on a major label from one of their star musicians. Ya think it was worth listening to? Nah, me neither.

Last time, I promise; fast forward two more years, to 2010.

Please. Help. Me. I thought that “Runaway Love” was all over the radio. Oh no. I hadn’t seen anything yet. Ludacris’ huge single from “Battle of the Sexes” was “How Low”. I couldn’t get away from it. It was everywhere. Every club, every radio station, all over campus. It was everywhere. I wanted to stab myself in the eye with a pencil every time I heard it. It is a horrible song, just trash. “how Low” sounds like Rick Rubin laid down the beat, perfected it, then Ludacris’ label sent the song to a B-rate producer to remix it and they decided to put out that version. Utter trash.

So I saw Ludacris in concert in Statesboro, GA at Georgia Southern in 2010. Tickets were $20… I was a bit hesitant due to the ticket price, but I figured, “Why not? Statesboro hardly ever gets big-name talent here”. Ludacris may be “big name”, but he’s certainly not talented. Scratch that. Ludacris is insanely talented, but he’s bloated from being in the rap game over a decade. Ludacris has lost that fire in his belly.

I had high hopes for the Ludacris concert. Myself and some buddies arrived very early to get next to the stage. They had converted the baseball field to a venue for the concert. We had walked over to the baseball field from my place, it was a nice night for a mile or two walk.

His opening acts got on stage at ~8pm. There were an insane amount of opening acts, something like 5-6. They were all over the place. There were two guys that were high energy, they worked the crowd into a frenzy. I have no idea what their names were, but I would buy their CD in a heartbeat. They were what I came to see. Unfortunately, Luda or his label or someone decided they needed to showcase all of the ‘talent’ from the label before they finally gave us Ludacris. We had to stand through a couple more acts that were very mediocre… The worst was a guy on a piano, singing over a light ballad. Who thought that was a good idea? I felt sorry for the guy, the crowd was boo-ing him and he kept right on playing. Bless his little heart.

Finally, around 10:30, Luda gets on stage. Remember, we’re at Georgia Southern University in Statesboro, Georgia. Ludacris prances around on stage for a bit. His backup man is doing most of the hard vocal-work. Ludacris seems tired and bored, like he doesn’t want to be there. His image was one of no respect for the crowd. At first, the crowd was showing him much love, but as they realized that he didn’t care about being there the energy level went way down. When he shouted out “Georgia State, how ya’ll feeling tonight?”, the crowd got quiet. My question is, how could he think he was at Georgia State? Ludacris did his undergrad work there. It’s very tough to mistake Georgia Southern for Georgia State; I’ve been to both.

Like I said, the energy was lacking. The show was lacking. Ludacris was lacking. That’s why I’ve now put Ludacris in the same category as Rick Ross. What category is that, you may be asking yourself? The category of rappers I immediately turn off whenever I hear them. It’s tough to get into that category; Rick Ross got in there since he’s very, very stupid. But that’s another post.

What do you think? Let me know in the comments section, or hit me up at admin@rapquotes.net

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1 comment so far ↓

#1 Fred Hampton on 01.28.14 at 1:52 pm

You didn’t even mention the song with Justin Bieber! Any rapper who does a song with that blatant of a commercial pop sensation does not have an ounce of intergrity left. What a sellout!

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