Lupe Fiasco is a rapper, record producer and entrepreneur from Chicago, Illinois. He disliked hip-hop music in his early life because he thought it was too negative and vulgar, but he eventually developed an interest and joined a group when he was 19 years old. In “Around My Way” Lupe Fiasco offers his criticism of materialism, the United States military and the mass media, among many other things. This track samples “T.R.O.Y.” from the legendary Pete Rock and C.L. Smooth.
Live from the other side what you see
A bunch of nonsense on my TV
Heaven on Earth is what I need
But I feel I’m in Hell every time I breathe
Reporting live from the other side what you hear
A bunch of nonsense all in my ear
Rich man, poor man, we all got to pay
‘Cause freedom ain’t free, especially ’round my way
- peace (noun) – a time of no war or violence. Lupe Fiasco wants more peace to the teachers of blind kids. In other words, he praises teachers who are socially responsible.
- peaceful is an adjective
- peacefully is an adverb
- rebel (noun) – a person who refuses to accept the government’s power and uses force to oppose it. The government is trying to negotiate with the rebels.
- rebel /REbÉl/ – noun, person
- rebel /rÉBEL/ – verb, same spelling as noun but different pronunciation
- rebellion – Also a noun, but a rebellion is an event and not a person
- racism (noun) – the belief that some races are better than others; the unfair treatment of people because of their race. Even in 2013, racism still exists in many developed countries.
- race is a noun
- racist is also a noun
- corporate (adjective) – an organization or business that is a separate entity from the people who run and operate it. The corporate bailout is one of the reasons why the rebels are protesting.
- corporation is a noun
- nonsense (noun) – foolish words or actions. Lupe Fiasco does not trust the mass media in America because he notices a lot of nonsense on TV.
- nonsensical is an adjective
- freedom (noun) – not being in prison or not being a slave; able to do something without limits or restrictions. Many people argue that American freedom of speech has limits and restrictions.
- free is a verb and adjective
- freely is an adverb
- marvel (verb) – to show or experience great surprise or admiration. Many tourists marvel at the sight of the New York City. It is the true concrete jungle!
- protest (verb) – to express disagreement or opposition to something by strongly complaining about it. The students have been protesting the rise in tuition.
- protest /prÉTEST/ – verb
- protest /PROtest/ – noun
- truth (noun) – the actual facts about something. It is nearly impossible to get the complete truth in mainstream media, such as TV and newspapers. There is too much bias.
- true is an adjective
- trustworthy is also an adjective
- poverty (noun) – being poor. Many wealthy and developed countries still have poverty, especially with the increase of unemployment.
- poverty line is a noun
- poverty-stricken is an adjective
“Around My Way” samples Pete Rock and C.L. Smooth’s classic song “T.R.O.Y.” Initially the hip-hop duo were unhappy that Lupe Fiasco sampled their song, but they eventually got over it.
Does society have many problems? What are the biggest problems that society faces? Do you trust the journalism and mainstream media in your country? Why or why not? What will you do to improve society? Is it possible to end all poverty and give freedom to everyone? Please write your comments below!