A Line-by-Line Analysis of 2 Chainz' "Birthday Song"
[youtube height="HEIGHT" width="WIDTH"]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y34jC4I1m70[/youtube]
If you’ve ever gotten caught up in the rap game like me*, then you know how words can tragically get overlooked in favor of fancy beats and bass drops. But there’s at least one artist out there who knows the importance of using music to transcend all bounds and speak to the human experience: 2 Chainz. Graduating second in his class in high school, 2 Chainz is one of the most brilliant philosophers of our generation and his bumpin’ club hit “Birthday Song” is one of the most important twenty-first century discussions of existentialism thus far. Don’t believe me? Let’s take a look.
[Intro: 2 Chainz]
Birthday, it's your birthday If I die bury me inside that Louis store
While in the spring meadows of our youth birthdays are a joyous celebration of life, as the years wear on they become sobering annual reminders that each moment brings us closer to death. As his birthday approaches and he ages another year, 2 Chainz is hit with the sudden realization that from the moment we are born, we are not living, but dying. Confronted by his own mortality, 2 Chainz spirals into an existential crisis. He wonders if in a life where the only certain thing is the inevitability of death, has he placed too much meaning on material possessions? Is he the summation of his designer clothes? Will that be his legacy? [Hook: 2 Chainz] They ask me what I do and who I do it for And how I come up with this shit up in the studio
Much like the apathetic Mersault of Albert Camus’ The Stranger, 2 Chainz is unable to generate satisfactory answers for his actions and motives. He rationalizes that the universe is an absurd and meaningless place, so nothing he does truly matters. All I want for my birthday is a big booty hoe All I want for my birthday is a big booty hoe
From the deepest trenches of apathy pure hedonism emerges. 2 Chainz recognizes that human life is irrelevant, and the only goals worth attaining are physical acts that directly pleasure and satisfy the libidinous id. Physical sensations are all 2 Chainz can be sure of. And damn it all if 2 Chainz doesn’t just want a baby that got back. When I die, bury me inside the Gucci store When I die, bury me inside the Louis store All I want for my birthday is a big booty hoe All I want for my birthday is a big booty hoe
Death, birth, birth, life; are they not both acts of creation and destruction? How little they differ. There is orgasmic release in the purity of birth and death; it is the life in between that is torment. [Verse 1: 2 Chainz] She got a big booty so I call her Big Booty
2 Chainz’s sense of detachment from others and the world around him allows for total honesty. Completely unrestricted by societal norms 2 Chainz merely vocalizes what appears to be his reality. Scrr..Scrr.. Wrists moving, cookin' to it I'm in the kitchen, yams everywhere Just made a juug, I got bands everywhere
I don’t know what any of this means. Which is fine, because everything is meaningless, anyways. You the realest nigga breathin' if I hold my breath
The external world is an illusion; only the self is real. If I hold my breath, then I, the thing in the Universe that is most strongly connected to reality, shall perish. If reality dies, then the illusory is the only existence and becomes the new reality. Referee, with the whistle, brrrrrt! hold his tech Extendo clip, extendo roll When your girl leave me she need a hair salon
Hair weave killer goin' on a trapathon
Who cares. See I done had more bombs than Pakistan
Not touching this one. Dope bomb, dro bomb, and a pill bomb
See nigga, I'm ballin', you in will call
2 Chainz often turns to substances to escape reality. When I die, bury me inside the jewelry store When I die, bury me inside the Truey store
Scatter my ashes into the wind so that I become nothing. Let every atom of myself travel the easterly winds, exploring the world, filling infinite spaces, fusing with everything. I want to live forever. True to my religion, two of everything I'm too different
A breakthrough! 2 Chainz realizes the importance of duality in life. Even if life is intrinsically without purpose, he can create meaning by his interactions with the external world. From this day forward he decides to wear two chains around his neck as a reminder that every living being is interconnected. He cannot be 2 Chainz without either chain. So when I die, bury me next to 2 bitches
We are eternal. Even in death, I shall continue to live through others. [Hook] [Verse 2: Kanye West] Ah, Yeezy Yeez—
NOT NOW KANYE, THIS IS 2 CHAINZ’S MOMENT. YOU GET. Don’t you have a half-naked Kardashian to French on a motorcycle?
There are still more lyrics, but I got lazy my ears started bleeding this is a nice denouement. Besides, you were never going to listen to this far into the song anyways.
*A story for another time.