Welcome to Florida. Here’s Some Cocaine.


It’s OK to rap about selling cocaine like it’s cool. Let’s explain something: Hip-hop is like wrestling, and Miami’s Rick Ross has muscled his way in with a big personality; buzzwords like money, bricks, hoes, and whips; and, you know, some sound effects from Scarface. Consider the mantra he puts down on “White House.” Follow the bouncing ball: “I’m on top of the world/I’m gettin’ money/Hundred-grand any day easy/I’m gettin’ money.” He’s on some Eazy-E shit. But while Port of Miami‘s mythological view of the dope game can be as dumbed down as most rappers’ trappin’-and-pimpin’ caricature of “the ‘hood,” “Hustlin’ ” and its colossal back-at-the-chicken-shack blues-infected turnarounds place Ross at the forefront of a new era in hip-hop lyricism, one that emphasizes consolidating words rather than merely rhyming them. Or consolidating numbers: “Don’t tote no .22s/Magnum cost me 22/Tatted on them 22s/Birds go for 22/Li’l momma super thick/She say she 22 /She seen them 22s/We in room 2-22.”