RAVEN MACK is a mystic poet-philosopher-artist of the Greater Appalachian unorthodox tradition. He does have an amazing PATREON, but also *normal* ARTIST WEBSITE too.

Thursday, April 19

EWA100 - #57. Biz Markie - Just A Friend

57. Biz Markie - Just A Friend (Cold Chillin'. 1989. From the LP The Biz Never Sleeps)

Raven Mack: There's a lot of things out there that make me embarrassed to being born an American, which I of course had no choice in, things like American Idols and Anna Nicole Smith and the way Jeff Gordon talks and how people on TV use the word "blogosphere" when it gets near election time, not to mention the creepy shit like porn obsessions and dudes who like to wear diapers or be forced to watch their wives have sex with other dudes against their will. It's easy to see why a machismo-soaked third world country would want to blow us apart with the effeminate leading men we have on our TV programs, which we force-beam around the world because we are the leaders of the free world - which means commercials for shit you should buy, not some grand philosophical idealogy. And when I get hung up on the major media or look at crappy music magazines with shit like Puff Daddy pretending he's tough and sexy or Fallout Boy looking cuter than most girls I've ever fucked, it fills me with a hate too and were I to believe in some sort of mythical god-figure like Muhammad or God or whoever, I would want them to throw all these fucks off the mountain too, to not clutter my view not so much with their perversions against decent living, because I don't care about that so much, but just to not clutter my view with their unloungingness. My basic philosophical mantra is we should all be able to chill, and shit like that makes it too uncomfortable to chill, or it creates sub-cultures of little identity-less basketcases who latch onto that as their identity.
However, when I remove myself from mass media and the molasses crawl of suburban sprawl, cars stalled out at endless red lights in front of chain stores with branded logos I can get on credit, I remember things like junkyards full of wrecked cars and old ladies frying up chicken and people like Biz Markie. It makes me sort of proud to have been accidentally born where I by chance was born, because no other country has such large stacks of junk cars or Biz Markie, and if they have old ladies frying up chicken, those old ladies don't talk in a way I find understandable. But seriously, Biz Markie is like the biggest, ugliest dude you could ever meet, but he's a goofy fuck who has carved a steady cashflow for himself.
"Just A Friend" is like the most shining example of Mr. Markie at his most Bizness. This is one of those songs - maybe one of only like two or three that I can think of - that when you hear it, not only do you want to sing along but you want to yell along as loud as you can, obnoxiously but in a good-natured way. It brings you happiness inside. If we could export material culture like "Just A Friend" but filter it into local dialects, I think the world would think so much higher of us Americans as opposed to knowing us as the land of double penetrations and Jessica Simpson's stretched tarpaulin face.

Mike Dikk: If there were to be one of those Myspace-styled dumbass surveys personalized to be exclusively about me, one of the questions could be: What song is Mike most likely to hand drum on a table?. The answer, of course, is “Just A Friend”. It’s kind of a trick question though, since it’s the only song I can competently air drum and still sing along to outside of “We Will Rock You” by Queen, which doesn’t count because you’d have to be brain dead to not do that. Like Raven said, this song was made to be yelled to anytime you hear it, or in my case, if you feel the need to air drum on a table, which hasn’t really hit me since high school when I was chilling with Boyz II Men and they needed something to acapella to.
The video to this song was also a very important first for me. It was the first video where I saw an article of clothing blurred out. The article was Biz’s Nike sweatshirt that he’s wearing on the park bench, which is only blurred out in the scenes where it’s really noticeable. I never understood what that was all about, but I imagined that maybe instead of NIKE it said FUCK or maybe there were titties discreetly drawn in there somewhere. I guess Biz and co. just didn’t want to risk getting sued or something, since this took place in the days before sneaker companies looked at rap music as a highly lucrative investment. As we all know, now every rap video ever has something blurred out in it, because all those rappers are always up to no good, showing the ladies inhumanly jiggling their asses and rolling marijuana cigarettes right in the videos. Why can’t they wait until after the video is over?
Also, the extended version of the song features Biz and his crew telling mama jokes at the beginning which was easily my favorite hobby at the time. I was really banking on telling mama jokes becoming a legit sport so I could be a millionaire by now. You may know the foreigner from That '70s Show hosts a show on MTV now called “YO MOMMA”, which features possibly the worst mother jokes ever to be told in the history of comedy, and the sad fact is I’m most likely too old, fat, and ugly to be chosen on that show and clean up. Though I think the winners only get $100 and a steak dinner, and I also heard that most of the people on that show are actors with agents and shit, which kind of defeats the whole purpose of me wanting to participate.
Annnnyhoo, If there was ever a song to universally bring dudes scorned by trifling bitches together, and let them laugh about the whole thing, it’s this song. Unfortunately, I think most people view Biz as a loveable loser getting shot down because he’s an ugly fucker, and not because women are trifling bitches and play that “Just A Friend” card with everyone, not just ugly fuckers.

Download: Biz Markie - Just A Friend

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