First Hit #1: May 31, 2003
Last time, I said mean things about 50 Cent, and I will continue to do so. Alright, 21 Questions isn’t necessarily a bad idea for a song, and it actually makes a movement to a bit of vulnerability, as the rapper outlines a bunch of scenarios that might make a woman leave. The guy loves his braggadocio, but here he’s actually trying to be more than just a pile of money, which actually makes him almost endearing. For all his bragging, he wants a real human connection, and his obsession with money – the album is called Get Rich or Die Tryin’ after all – actually sounds like it’s making him unsure of whether or not he can manage that. Sure, the subject of the song is a woman, unnamed, but it’s also 50 himself, as he worries that he’s just a pile of money rather than a compelling person.
But 50 Cent is awful. Nate Dogg gives him a smooth hook, he has a good beat, he provides the same mush mouthed delivery, sounding like he recorded his lines after a trip to the dentist. Plus, after a relatively serious song he throws in the fat kid loves cake line, which is one of those things that might have worked in a more self-consciously silly song but takes away from something that’s attempting at least a measure of seriousness. To be fair, this shows that he’s at least a more compelling person than he might appear on first encounter, but in all honesty, he’s not very good at rapping, and that’s kind of his job.