Acoustic hip-hop covers are the most unheralded genre in music, because music critics are afraid of the transformative power of a bro bleatin’ rhymes in a flat tenor over weakly strummed chords on a two-bit guitar. Do you want to listen to rap but you’re afraid of the loud beats and barked curse words? Is your mom not down with Nas, but totally twee for the Dave Matthews Band? Then head over to Youtube to find an array of awesome covers for any artist, all done by your favorite Sigma Rho members in backwards baseball caps.
This week, we’ve labored to bring you the best covers of Asher Roth’s “I Love College” that we could find. We won’t do the social analysis of white suburban kids aping a white suburban kid who apes black music, forming a multi-headed Hydra of cultural backwash that can’t be easily ignored – that is, if we choose to acknowledge it in the first place. Asher Roth’s schtick is that he’s the one white guy all the black people in the room are down with, which he demonstrates in almost all of his music videos. But we will let no pessimism enter the list – instead, close your eyes and let your emotions drift away on a sea of Jello shots.
There’s something in this guy’s flat delivery that’s just so charming, the way he reduces Roth’s swagger-jackin’ rhymes to humble offerings of his desires and aspirations. Yes, fill up his cup; yes, let’s get fucked up; no, no bouncin’ in his house; yes, Hakeem Olajuwon and Allen Iverson. The backwards baseball cap is standard, as is his chiseled Grecian jaw. Picture yourself on a hazy June day, sitting on a friend’s porch, watching his roommate play this song while trying to romance any number of girls who stare at him with fawning eyes, awash in his musical transcendence. You’ve just been date raped.
Listen, if the house band starts playing “I Love College” and there aren’t any girls around, don’t fret. You’re more mature than that; you don’t have to waste a good track just because there’s no biddies to get acquainted with. No, you muster up your courage, walk over to a bro, and grind on him. You touch that man’s penis. And you enjoy it. Eyyyyyyy.
So sad. So plaintive. So raw and emotional. If you’ve ever wanted to watch Asher Roth sung with the melodrama of Celine Dion with the sonic execution of a backing-track-less Ashlee Simpson, here you are. He is staring into your eyes because he wants you to love him. He is waiting for your response.
Black girl covering a white dude covering black music? Urrhgghh….my collegiate perceptions of race and class just got shattered… how to even properly snark on this? Oh well, back to watching anime “ironically.”
If the best thing you and three of your friends can do on a Saturday night is lay down a weak cover of this song, then I don’t think you get this whole “being a productive human being” thing. I mean, maybe it’s a fun way to spend a night, but I don’t know what’s being gained or lost when something like this is the culmination of human productivity and desire to act. I mean, maybe we’re irrational actors in an irrational world, flailing in the darkness to find whatever meager solitude we can, and that solitude is “I Love College.” I’m not sure man, I’m really not sure, I just know that if you’re doing this shit then you had better be ready to die for it. If not, then what’s the goddamn point.
You’ve made it through my favorite “I Love College” covers. Congratulations! Kill yourself.
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