Endless Loop: I’m That Type of Guy

llcooljHave you ever had one of those songs that gets stuck in your head for days…weeks…years? Sure you have. These are the songs that always make the cut. The songs on repeat. We all have them. I have a ton. Welcome back to Endless Loop.

“I’m That Type of Guy” by LL Cool J

Growing up, I never really felt comfortable playing the music I liked in the car with my parents. I knew that some way or another it was either going to get derided, openly scoffed at with a series of parental objections and eye rolls, or inspire a degree of fatherly side eye that I just didn’t want to deal with. It didn’t even matter that I would self-censor my selections, omitting any track that might be deemed questionable due to lyrical content and whatnot. My folks were just simply not fans of hip-hop or hair metal, but they never tried to take any of my music away from me (despite the unfortunate “motherfucker incident”) so I never pushed it. It was just a lot easier that way. But I was always kind of jealous of the kids who seemed to have complete control of the car stereo while their parents carted them around town.

That was where I discovered LL Cool J.

In the summer after 4th grade, riding in the car with my friend Barry, his mom driving us to the pool or the park or the movies or something, listening to LL Cool J’s Walking with a Panther on cassette, and “I’m That Type of Guy” comes on and shatters my little 10-year old mind. Sure, a lot of the innuendo flew over my head…but not all of it. And I found the dalliances and affairs of one James Todd Smith to be hilarious. The ladies did indeed love cool James. But that wasn’t even the best part.

The chorus included a chant of “Oh-We-Oh,” ripped straight out of The Wizard of Oz, a sample/homage that was both ridiculous and amazing. It was silly, completely unexpected, and proof positive that if done correctly, you can turn anything into an awesome loop, a boost to any jam. My thinking was forever swayed, my hearing awed and inspired. And, it’s probably why I’m drawn to production and samples before anything else when listening to hip-hop.

And all of this went down with my friend’s mom in tow.

When my boys are older, I’ll need to keep all of this in mind…let them take control of the radio every now and again…be the cool dad if possible. Word will get around. Then, just maybe, the ladies will love cool Tommy too.


Thomas H Williams

Thomas H Williams

From a bunker somewhere in Central Texas, Thomas H. Williams spends most of his time with his wife, his two sons, and his increasingly neurotic dog. He listens to a lot of music, drinks a lot of excellent beers, and gets out from time to time. For even more shenanigans, visit heavenisanincubator.blogspot.com.

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