Common Sense – I Used to Love H.E.R.

common-sense-i-used-to-love-h-e-r-back-n-the-day-buffetCommon Sense released his single “I Used to Love H.E.R.” back on September 27, 1994. The track was the first single off his second studio album “Resurrection“.  The single was produced by NO I.D. and is considered one of Hip Hops most celebrated metaphorical songs.

This song is one of those tracks that as soon as you’ve listened to it once,  you’ll want to hear it over and over again.  The track’s main sample is that of jazz artist George Benson’sThe Changing World“. The guitar riff (at 0:01 and at 4:26) is what gives this record a jazzy appeal like a lot of artists were doing in the 90’s.


On top of that, they take a drum beat sample from “Fly, Fly, the Route, Shoot” by If to complete the sound.

A Classic Song About Hip Hop, For Hip Hop

As for the rhymes, Common speaks about how he grew up with this girl, and as time went by he noticed how she was changing.  He tried to catch up with her, but it seems she was changing to fast for him.  Since the girl he is speaking about in reality is Hip Hop, we can see how sometimes progression is not always positive.  There was one line in particular that had people in the west coast (especially Ice Cube) seeing “red”.

Now black music is black music and it’s all good
I wasn’t salty; she was with the boys in the hood
Cause that was good for her, she was becoming well rounded
I thought it was dope how she was on that freestyle shit

I am from Los Angeles, so when I first heard it, I knew it was not an insult.  He was just talking about a certain era and how the west coast was capitalizing on the genre.  Ice Cube on the other hand thought it was disrespectful and started a feud with the Chicago MC.  Still, the song is dope as can be, but when listening to it more than 20 years later, it seems that Common saw what was coming next in Hip Hop.  Especially when you hear the final bars on this track.

I see niggas slammin’ her,and taking her to the sewer
But I’ma take her back hoping that the shit stop

Common’s Message Is Clear

It seems very clear that he was taking shots at Onyx and Das EFX, but no feud started there!  Common saw something we couldn’t or did not want to see, and that was the destruction of Hip Hop.

I met this girl, when I was ten years old
And what I loved most she had so much soul
She was old school, when I was just a shorty
Never knew throughout my life she would be there for me
on the regular, not a church girl she was secular
Not about the money, no studs was mic checkin her
But I respected her, she hit me in the heart
A few New York niggaz, had did her in the park
But she was there for me, and I was there for her
Pull out a chair for her, turn on the air for her
and just cool out, cool out and listen to her
Sittin on a bone, wishin that I could do her
Eventually if it was meant to be, then it would be
because we related, physically and mentally
And she was fun then, I’d be geeked when she’d come around
Slim was fresh yo, when she was underground
Original, pure untampered and down sister
Boy I tell ya, I miss her[Verse Two:]
Now periodically I would see
ol girl at the clubs, and at the house parties
She didn’t have a body but she started gettin thick quick
DId a couple of videos and became afrocentric
Out goes the weave, in goes the braids beads medallions
She was on that tip about, stoppin the violence
About my people she was teachin me
By not preachin to me but speakin to me
in a method that was leisurely, so easily I approached
She dug my rap, that’s how we got close
But then she broke to the West coast, and that was cool
Cause around the same time, I went away to school
And I’m a man of expandin, so why should I stand in her way
She probably get her money in L.A.
And she did stud, she got big pub but what was foul
She said that the pro-black, was goin out of style
She said, afrocentricity, was of the past
So she got into R&B hip-house bass and jazz
Now black music is black music and it’s all good
I wasn’t salty, she was with the boys in the hood
Cause that was good for her, she was becomin well rounded
I thought it was dope how she was on that freestyle shit
Just havin fun, not worried about anyone
And you could tell, by how her titties hung[Verse Three:]
I might’ve failed to mention that the shit was creative
But once the man got you well he altered the native
Told her if she got an energetic gimmick
That she could make money, and she did it like a dummy
Now I see her in commercials, she’s universal
She used to only swing it with the inner-city circle
Now she be in the burbs lickin rock and dressin hip
And on some dumb shit, when she comes to the city
Talkin about poppin glocks servin rocks and hittin switches
Now she’s a gangsta rollin with gangsta bitches
Always smokin blunts and gettin drunk
Tellin me sad stories, now she only fucks with the funk
Stressin how hardcore and real she is
She was really the realest, before she got into showbiz
I did her, not just to say that I did it
But I’m committed, but so many niggaz hit it
That she’s just not the same lettin all these groupies do her
I see niggaz slammin her, and takin her to the sewer
But I’ma take her back hopin that the shit stop
Cause who I’m talkin bout y’all is hip-hop

-Al E.

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