Jay-Z & Kanye West's "Otis": Hit Or Miss?

Categories: Rap Round Table

Some rappers happen to be thoughtful, intelligent people. Every Monday (that isn't a national holiday) Rocks Off will have some of them here discussing issues relevant to their culture.

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Photo illustration by John Seaborn Gray
This Week's Panel: Chingo Bling, Jack Freeman, Fat Tony, Brad Gilmore, Kane, Delo, Renzo, Chane, A.D.D., Kyle Hubbard, Roosh Williams, Yung Truth and more

Not Invited: Jay-Z and Kanye. And they reeeaaallly wanted to come, too. But they'll be here soon enough.

This Week's Prompt: "Otis" is probably the one recent rap song that everybody proactively listened to. So, thoughts?

Chingo Bling: I love how Jay-Z Bit my raps and style. "Y'all buildin' fences we buildin' undaground tunnels."

Jack Freeman: I think it's a good track. I also think too many people forgot that it's just a song and it's not to be overanalyzed. People wanted to dissect and find something that wasn't there, when it's just put here to be enjoyed. Everybody thinks for some reason when Ye' and Jay put out something, it's not to be merely enjoyed. I don't even think anyone actively listened to the song. They did more analyzing than anything, and when you that, it will almost never live up to your "standards." Which means, in turn, you really don't like anything.

Fat Tony: Played a few seconds of it in a session with [producer] Tom Cruz and he says, "it's a shame." Me, though? I'm over it all. I'm post-music and post-opinions.

Brad Gilmore: The "Otis" record is what I hoped "H.A.M." would be. It's lyrical, and the type of lyricisism you'd expect from a Jay and Ye' record.

Renzo: Lyrically, it sounds like he knows. But who's glad he went back to soul samples? I am.

Rap Round Table: Who's "he," sir?

Renzo: Who cares, right?

Kane: It's a good buzz song. These are vets, so they know how to stir up even more buzz about an upcoming project. Smart leak.

Roosh Williams: It's cool. I definitelly like it better than "H.A.M.""

Kyle Hubbard: I like it, I don't love it. I am very excited about the album though. If anything, the song showed that Kanye mighe to hold his weight against Hov. My biggest fear was Jay being 100 miles ahead lyrically each song.

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It's a bit disappointing.  Great potential, yet the jewelry, car show, expensive item talking is a bit played out at the moment.  People want to be inspired again.  This is not to say the project won't be a classic.  The track itself leaves more to be desired.


i personally love the song, the problem with most people saying there not feeling it, is because its not the "single" that they were hoping  to dominate the radio. But i do believe it well fit very well in the context of the album, thats why i can appreciate it now...


Yeezy spazzed on it, and as much as I love Jay, I feel he showed a diminishing skill set. Overall, it's way better than "H.A.M."Nailed it.


"Some rappers happen to be thoughtful, intelligent people. Every Monday (that isn't a national holiday) Rocks Off will have some of them hear discussing issues relevant to their culture. "

1. You mean here, not hear.

2. "Some rappers happen to be thoughtful, intelligent people."  SMH. What kind of passive aggressive backhanded compliment is that. Kind of like if I said, some journalists happen to think critically and write well. Get an editor.


I liked it but it left me wanting to listen to Otis Redding. I love Otis Redding and have several lps of his, and I though that while this was a good song it just didn't connect as well as it should have. I totally disagree with Thurogood. It wasn't rapping over the song at all. If you want to listen to someone rapping over a complete song pop in The Pretty Tony Album. Great stuff over some classic Delphonics.


Some of them actually do. Like Shea. Just a typo. Thanks for pointing it out.

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