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6. Everlast, "What It's Like"
Everlast wasn't known for didactic music when he was part of House of Pain. But, six years later, he went solo and strummed a simple guitar in a call for empathy.
Mary got pregnant from a kid named Tom who said he was in love
He said don't worry about a thing baby doll I'm the man you've been dreamin' of
And then she heads for the clinic and she gets some static walkin' through the doors
They call her a killer, and they call her a sinner, and they call her a whore
God forbid you ever had to walk a mile in her shoes
'Cause then you really might know what it's like to have to choose
"What It's Like" isn't a bad song. But Everlast didn't exactly walk the walk when he went back to rapping and started a beef with Eminem, dropping rhymes like, "You can't keep your woman from goin' astray / better run and check your kid for your DNA / I take care of my moms / you get sued by yours with your corny metaphors about drugs and crack whores."
7. Kanye West, "Jesus Walks"
Before Kanye West, there was Jesus. And before hits like "Gold Digger," "The Good Life," and that one where Kanye "put the pussy in a sarcophagus," there was "Jesus Walks" on his debut album. Yeezy cast himself in the video as the preacher. Of course.
I ain't here to argue about his facial features
Or here to convert atheists into believers I'm just trying to say the way school need teachers
The way Kathie Lee needed Regis that's the way I need Jesus
So here go my single, dog, radio needs this
They say you can rap about anything except for Jesus
That means guns, sex, lies, video tapes
But if I talk about God my record won't get played?
Oh, but it did get played. And I'ma let you finish, but hearing the secular stuff in the club is way less awkward.
8. Lily Allen, "Him"
On her second album, the British pop star wanted to get deep Well, after a bunch of songs about breakups, new love, and the misfortune of a great guy attached to a small penis. If you actually bought the album — you don't have to admit it — her musings about God are on that track you always skip.
Do you think He's any good
At remembering people's names
Do you think He's ever taken
smack or cocaine
Ever since he can remember people
Have died in His good name
Long before that September
Long before hijacking planes
He's lost the will He can't decide
He doesn't know who's right or wrong
But there's one thing that He's sure
Of this has been going on too long
Lily Allen, messenger of God, knows how He feels about war. But she sure doesn't know much about His personal life.
9. John Mayer, "Waiting on the World to Change"
Forget that John Mayer described his dick as "sort of like a white supremacist." He's a good guy invested in a better tomorrow. His whole generation is. And they'll start making a difference, once the world changes.
Me and all my friends
We're all misunderstood
They say we stand for nothing and
There's no way we ever could
Now we see everything that's going wrong
With the world and those who lead it
We just feel like we don't have the means
To rise above and beat it
So come on, world. Change on your own. In the meantime, John Mayer's going to be tweeting, watching porn, or wearing a banana hammock.
10. Jessica Simpson, "Remember That"
Like most songs in the Jessica Simpson oeuvre, this one navigates the nasal but breathy world of relationships. But instead of singing about sweet kisses ("Sweet Kisses") and love saving her life (every other Jessica Simpson song), Simpson belts platitudes about abusive relationships.
Remember how he told you you were stupid
How he couldn't even look at you anymore
Remember how he told you you were crazy
How he got out of the car and slammed the door
He said you can't do anything right
The generic public service announcement ends with, "Take it from me. I've stood there in your shoes." Which might be sweet and empathetic. Or she might mean that literally, she owns the same pair of shoes as you do.