If I say "Forever" and you don't respond immediately with "Forever-eva? And eva eva" then guess what? We can't be friends.
OutKast's "Ms. Jackson" is one of the most beloved songs in hip-hop history, a universal tale of heartbreak and love-dreams gone unfulfilled, but imagine being the person that song was written about. Actually, you don't have to imagine, you can just directly ask the person it was written about—Erykah Badu.
In a new interview with the Rap Radar podcast, Ms. Badu admitted that it was painful to hear her breakup with André 3000 played out for the world to hear, and that Big Boi's more aggressive verse particularly struck a raw nerve, but that ultimately as an artist she had to give the utmost respect to André for using his art to process his life.
“It hit kind of a sore spot. I didn’t wanna hear that, especially when I heard Big Boi’s verse. When I heard André’s verse, I felt very good because his verse was really, really inspiring… he just said how he felt and it was his honest feelings and I always respected that and listened to what he felt and appreciated it." Rap Radar Podcast
Thankfully, Erykah's mother also loved the song without reservation; over the years she proudly rocked a Ms. Jackson license plate, coffee mug, headband and much more. Turns out the real Ms. Jackson wasn't crying at all.
Getting Erykah's perspective adds a small but touching layer of detail to a song that's a certified classic, and also gives us an answer to the eternal question, "What do Erykah Badu and Pimp C have in common?"
Any day you listen to "Ms. Jackson" is a good day, may that song live on forever. Forever? And eva eva? Yes, forever eva.
By Nathan S, occasional keyboard hitter and beard maintainer. This is his Twitter.
Photo Credit: Tumblr