Sir Mix-A-Lot – Baby Got Back

First Hit #1: July 4, 1992

Baby Got Back is kind of regarded as a joke, possibly because it’s a song written about butts. Big butts, in particular, and how much Sir Mix-A-Lot loves them. It seems like it’s played as a joke, and Mix-A-Lot doesn’t exactly downplay the idea, with a video featuring butt-shaped fruits and all, but it’s actually an interesting exploration of society’s pressures to conform to rigid expectations about beauty while also being about what gives a specific man an erection.

The majority of the song is expressing disgust at societal expectations about beauty, all about how fashion magazines are presenting an ideal for beauty that isn’t necessarily accessible for many women. It’s also built on the idea that those expectations are not even something people outside of the fashion industry actually want. Mix-A-Lot’s celebration of big butts and a natural body is actually an oddly progressive idea that a natural body is preferable to the manipulation that occurs in the fashion industry.

Also, he refers to his penis as an anaconda and most of the song is about how much he wants to have sex.

It’s funny and a bit crude, but it’s also raising a valid point. Fashion magazines are a terrible way to judge beauty, and the hyper skinny models are that way not because it’s more attractive, but because it’s easier to fit clothes to someone without curves. Big butts and curvy bodies are great, and one must be proud of the body they have. Sir Mix-A-Lot can make you think about societal expectations of beauty, or make you laugh at a song that’s all about butts, either way you can get something out of it.

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3 Responses to Sir Mix-A-Lot – Baby Got Back

  1. RBerman says:

    Once again a #1 rap song that comes across as a novelty due to its string of tawdry jokes, delivered joyously. Jonathan Coulton did an acoustic version (with a melody by Coulton, not a rapped delivery) a few years ago (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MCWaN_Tc5wo) which was ripped off on the TV show Glee (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TMmBPF0vljM) without any sort of credit. Coulton claimed the moral high ground by putting his version for sale on iTunes as “Baby Got Back (In the Style of Glee),” donating the proceeds to charity, and challenging Glee’s creators to do the same.

  2. Pingback: Flo Rida feat. T-Pain – Low | We Are Number Ones

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