Jean Grae: Love Thirst
It is particularly disappointing that for years hip hop fans got very few choices of female rappers in the mainstream to choose from. It was usually either the thugged out, crotch grabbing tomboy who lowered her voice a few octaves to spit with the fellas or the ultra stylized over sexed fashion obsessed woman who may or may have not had a male ghostwriter. Of course, this is an over generalization. Also, there have been throngs of dope female MCs who have and have not had mainstream success and can stand toe to toe with any male on the mic. However, it is time the hip hop community admits its blatant misogyny in this arena. This is why the career of Jean Grae has been so enthralling. The underground circuit alumnus has emerged as one of the best lyricists in the game bar none completely on her own terms. Grae’s ability to twist similes and metaphors into submission and with a conversational flow has garnered her cult like allegiance amongst those in the know.
The producer 9th Wonder is one of these many devoted fans who eventually have become a collaborator on Grae’s aptly titled fourth coming album “Jeanius”. The first single “Love Thirst” is a soft, sensual head nodder produced by 9th Wonder. Sonically the beat hearkens to the late 90s production style of Jay Dilla with its soft piano twinkle, powerful bass line and classic hip hop snares and kicks and breathy chanting in the background. Lyrically Grae paints a highly sexual picture that can be described better as a tasteful nude then hardcore pornography. Through it all, her metaphors are still as crisp as if she were running through a 100 bar braggadocio fest. The video compliments the video perfectly as Grae appears as a beautiful stranger in the back seat of a taxi cab running through her lyrics, juxtaposed by the scene clips from the Robert De Niro film Taxi Driver.