Tech in Lyrics: The iPad and Talib Kweli

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Lyricists work their magic from the world around them, like anybody else. And that means that they often mention the technologies of their day. Given my interests, I can't help but track these references, and I've finally decided to start sharing them with you. Here, we see Talib Kweli's "Mr. International" from his new album, Gutter Rainbows.

Here, he's got the internal mad/iPad/sad rhyme reinforcing the iPad as an elite, luxury item for the world traveler. You can hear his delivery below.

When I'm in commuter traffic I'm never worried or panic
First class travel I'm flying Virgin Atlantic
I'm already checked in I'm ready to settle in
Going places I've never been I get my Rosetta in
Racking up the sky miles and getting them upgrades
And you hate the only place that you visit is upstate
Don't be mad cause I'm writing this rhyme on my iPad
Don't be sad cause tomorrow I'm catching the flight back

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Alexis C. Madrigal

Alexis Madrigal is the deputy editor of TheAtlantic.com, where he also oversees the Technology Channel. He's the author of Powering the Dream: The History and Promise of Green Technology. More

The New York Observer has called Madrigal "for all intents and purposes, the perfect modern reporter." He co-founded Longshot magazine, a high-speed media experiment that garnered attention from The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, and the BBC. While at Wired.com, he built Wired Science into one of the most popular blogs in the world. The site was nominated for best magazine blog by the MPA and best science Web site in the 2009 Webby Awards. He also co-founded Haiti ReWired, a groundbreaking community dedicated to the discussion of technology, infrastructure, and the future of Haiti.

He's spoken at Stanford, CalTech, Berkeley, SXSW, E3, and the National Renewable Energy Laboratory, and his writing was anthologized in Best Technology Writing 2010 (Yale University Press).

Madrigal is a visiting scholar at the University of California at Berkeley's Office for the History of Science and Technology. Born in Mexico City, he grew up in the exurbs north of Portland, Oregon, and now lives in Oakland.

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