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Riff: Scarface – “Black Still”

Dec 8, 2017

Face down, shot five or six times/With my kid and her mama in the cop car crying, and I’m dying/Stop lying, it’s a black and white thang/Redneck ass judge would rather watch a nigga hang

from Black Still lyrics by Scarface

A full on assault from a rap demigod; no hook, no posturing or tomfoolery, just a big middle finger aimed squarely at the man and his cronies. It’s one of the most direct and political songs in Scarface’s catalog, and he addresses multiple concerns including police brutality, a broken justice system and systematic violence towards black men and women. He’s on fire and venting his frustrations like a man pushed to his absolute limit. The acidic beat is an extension of Scarface’s fury, and it rumbles loudly throughout; echoing the sentiments of black America. The title captures the notion that no matter what he does or how successful he is, the racist powers that be will always look at him as just another black man. A profound song that pushes back with force and determination.

 

Riff by Jeff Min

Jeff Min is a Chicago-based writer at SONGLYRICS. His work has appeared in the Chicago Sun-Times, Hi-Fructose, Wax Poetics, SLAM, and HOOP.

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