9. “Fuck tha Police,” Bone Thugs-N-Harmony
The Bone brigade paid homage to the late Eazy-E — who originally signed the group — by covering N.W.A’s hit more or less to the letter for the 1997 tribute album In the Beginning… There Was Rap. It might lack the intricate, syncopated, singsong flow East Cleveland’s finest was known for, but on an album that featured oddities like Puffy doing LL’s “Big Ole Butt” and Cypress Hill covering BDP’s “I’m Still #1”, it at least didn’t make your brain want to turn inside out.
8. “Fuck the Police,” Jay Rock
TDE’s resident red-rag rocker flips that old Common “I Used to Love H.E.R.” schtick. But instead of a love letter to hip-hop, he personifies the police as a woman you’d want to avoid at all costs.
7. “Fuck the Police,” dead prez
M-1 and stic.man were always on some revolutionary shit, and it went far beyond croutons and futons on this broadside: “Power means the man who controls the land/He hold the key to selling drug paraphernalia and contraband.” The anti-cop sentiment didn’t motivate the song so much as it was a chanted afterthought, but it was one of a thousand ways the militant duo made sure you knew shit was bigger than hip-hop.
6. “Fuck the Police,” MellowHype
It’s not often you hear Tyler, the Creator get political — especially during his career’s shock-rap fueled start — but here he plays anchor to Left Brain and Hodgy Beats with a closing verse that recalls Jay-Z’s “99 Problems.” Fittingly, this Odd Future adaptation features some colorful dialog (“I’m Black and I’m loud, what a damn cowinky-dink”) and closes with Tyler going full Tupac.
5. “Fuck the Police,” J Dilla
Inspired by the late Detroit producer/rapper’s routine harassment by local officers, Jay Dee flips the bird at dirty cops who get off on abuse of power (and innocent citizens). “Any offended people, suck my balls,” he sums up in verse one. Not bad for the guy who made Donuts.
4. “F.T.P.,” Slim Thug
The Boss of the Nawf teamed up with fellow Houston legend Z-Ro for a screwed and chopped gem that belies its promethazine tempo with a simmering rage. “We ain’t havin’ that bullshit no more, we done reached our limit,” Z-Ro says on the hook, “y’all got guns, we got guns, fuck a prison sentence.” That’s one way to get to abolition.
3. “FTP,” YG
With “FDT” becoming such a signature tune, it was little wonder that YG returned to his acronym aggression this year. The timing couldn’t have been better — the video was filmed on location during LA’s BLM demonstrations in June, when the nation was anything but bool, balm, and bollected — and once again proved that the man born Keenon Daequan Ray Jackson isn’t just a West Coast hero, but an American one.
2. “Fuck the Police,” Boosie Badazz featuring Webbie
Clapping back at those who put the baton in Baton Rouge, Lil Boosie and Webbie share personal tales of the various ways they’ve been violated by Louisiana law enforcement. The 2007 track resonated — seven years after its release, the song served as an anthem for protestors in Ferguson, Missouri mobilizing in response to the police murder of Mike Brown.
1. “Fuck tha Police,” N.W.A
Songs like “Dopeman” had already made clear that the LA crew was on some other shit, but when they dropped Straight Outta Compton and people heard this album track, something deep within hip-hop broke free. Early gangsta rap tracks dealt with the effects of systemic oppression; Ice Cube, MC Ren, and Eazy-E aimed outward at the structures that bred and exacerbated those symptoms — and put Babylon on notice.
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