Track of the Day: 'You Ain't No DJ'

Past TracksThe video for this single from Big Boi's impeccable solo album Sir Lucious Left Foot: The Son of Chico Dusty opens up with a handsome hipster DJ in a pair of jeans tight enough to make your eyes kind of roll around in expectation of a watered-down MGMT or Girl Talk beat. But what follows is a kind of frenetic but cool, jumpy yet laconic bounce that sounds clean, fresh, and surprisingly danceable. There's nothing tinny or hipster about this song.

Big Boi's dackity-dack Atlanta flow is still (after 15 years) one of rap's most iconic sounds, and his voice feels as current as ever against this beat. Ditto for the look of the red Adidas track suit and straw Gucci bucket hat he's sporting.

The video is decidedly southern-flavored (a couple of meaty pitbull faces, and "Decatur, East Point, College Park" are all still there) but the track is entirely the child of the Internet and catering to a broad audience: not local to anywhere but giving a firm, respectful nod to its regional roots. It's accessible, palatable fusion food for a hip-hop audience whose taste has gotten pop, eclectic, and friendly. Aware of where it came from, but crowd-pleasing and really, really catchy.



On iTunes: Big Boi feat. Yelawolf / "You Ain't No DJ"

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Emily Q. Hazzard is an associate editor at WaPo Labs. She was previously an associate producer for Al Jazeera's The Stream and an editorial project associate at The Atlantic.

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