by Petula Caesar
I’ve been listening to the mix tape project “Let’s Push The Button” for a few days now in preparation for a review of the project I plan to write before the week is out…
…and while listening, I came across this track by Starrz, called “Oprah”.
Now I’ll be the first to admit I’m not a fan of all styles of hip hop. But in spite of that, I do understand all kinds of hip hop, even those that aren’t my cup of tea. I understand quality production, I understand what makes different types of hip hop work for their particular audiences. I understand what is popular and why, and what isn’t popular and why, even if I don’t care of it. This song probably isn’t one I’d listen to on my own. BUT it has everything necessary to be a smash hip hop single in the current marketplace. Its definitely a club banger, and it has an important key element — a hook that stays in your memory that you just can’t help but sing along to once the bass hits (I love money/I love women/I want OPRAH WINFREY). A great hook is more than half the battle in modern day hip hop hit making, and he has one that he delivers excellently. When listening to the mixtape, it was the only hook I could remember after listening to all the songs the first time.
I also want to shout out the production on this track. Its very focused and clear cut — the producer knew exactly what he had to do to make this song work, and he did just that. His focus on creating a very simple but very intense sound that pulsates and has movement was perfect for Starrz’s sing-song delivery — and this is one of the few times when I felt the extensive production on both the vocals and the music were appropriate and actually made the song better that it would have been without it.
Now I wasn’t crazy about the lyrics, but like I said from the top, this isn’t necessarily something I’d listen to on my own. But the lyrics did amuse me, so all in all it was a fun record that I chuckled at. AND if I was in the club and had a few drinks in me, I am pretty sure I’d be nodding my head hard at the very least. This song vaguely put me in mind of Sage The Gemini of “Gas Pedal” fame for some reason. But songs like “Oprah” can be double edged swords, because singles like this don’t always make the albums they are a part of successful. For example, in the case of Sage The Gemini, even with songs “Gas Pedal” and “Red Nose” that created buzz and moved units (“Gas Pedal” went platinum through digital sales), when STG released his album this week, he barely cracked 7,000 units.
But for now, Starrz’s “Oprah” was one of the standout tracks on the “Let’s Push The Button” mixtape. You can check out Miss Winfrey below, and go to Starrz’s Soundcloud page to download the track.