Saba – His Best Lyrics From CARE FOR ME

“What shall it profit a man if he gain the whole world and lose his soul?”

Who better than Saba can relate to the pressure of an artist? From falling under the weight of failure or perfection, to evaluating the worth of his artistry compared to the number of streams, or considering his influence on social media to his impact in his neighborhood and his family,

We’re always BUSY running away for futile things, and fighting to prove something for our insecure selves.Therefore CARE FOR ME is an album that sounds like a reality check. A reminder to care for what/who really matters, for what really brings a (permanent) SMILE to your face before it’s too late.

This is such a sincere project, open-hearted, heart-breaking and simply purely Human. Anybody can relate to Saba’s lyrics despite the poignant personal story around the loss of his cousin.

This album has been a therapeutic process to cope with the pain thanks to the soothing music production all around the lyrics. Smooth and angelic vocals from theMIND. The minimalist playing on the keys makes the production mesmerizing. The synthesizer creates an ethereal landscape and paints an overwhelming dimension along the songs. The drums are delicate and let the bass resonate from your mind to the core or your heart.

As an album that captures several layers, CARE FOR ME deals with all the fights Saba struggles with in his life. From miscommunication problems, careless behaviors towards his family and beloved, lack of self-esteem, fear and anger to the sound the SIRENS (police violence) and his faith in God tested when he sees another one of his relatives turn into an angel (HEAVEN ALL AROUND ME).

Consistent, genius songwriting, outstanding delivery skills, stunning storytelling in tracks such as PROM/KING, this album is more accomplished than his previous EP (The Bucket List Project), this album does deserve to be titled the album of the year.

With that being said, he’s just been acknowleged as Chicagoan Of The Year by Chicago Tribune a few days ago.

Now let’s appreciate his best lyrics in the album, #PoeticallyYours.

CALLIGRAPHY

“Wrote the amount of raps just on a mission to find something
Calligraphy […]

I just got tired of runnin’ away, runnin’ away
Everyone leavin’, I write ’em away, write ’em away
Calligraphy […]
No more time for mournin’ on my schedule, I see the right letters
Calligraphy, yeah
Readin’ the signs like I’m a highway driver, I just hit blasé blase
Hieroglyphic I see the wall that they writing
I build a wall up in my head
Autopilot, what it felt like I was on, I sent the word out flyin’
Calligraphy”

CALLIGRAPHY is a masterpiece of songwriting. This short song contains so many intentions and interpretations, this is pure poetry. The different flows follows according to the emotions. Saba is trying to cope with the pain, a pain so hurtful, he can barely move out of bed, dizzy mind, heavy heart. Astonished by the number of losses around him, if he had to write a poem for everyone, this would turn into a calligraphy.

This is his way to turn something dark and tragic into something bright and beautiful. This is the border between dark and light, being infatuated with death, or smiling for life. As such, the black and white color for the album cover suits perfectly this state of mind.

FIGHTER

I don’t wanna fight no more
Cause I’m not a fighter

It’s harder to love myself when all these people compliment me
Somehow it just remind me what I don’t got
But these folks don’t care to know
They think you rollin’ in the dough
Not realizin’ your next meal is a 4 for $4
Still feeling the guilt that Walt never thought to call
Fightin’ myself to get out of bed
I’m fightin’ myself to get out of bed
Fightin’ myself

In CALLIGRAPHY Saba raps “I’m not mad at God, I just can’t get out of bed”. Trusting his own worth, and facing his insecurities, either in the music industry, in his surrounding or with women are part of his daily fights. These types of fights, added to the death of his loved ones just have him lay down, stuck in bed. And here, Saba is exhausted, he “dont wanna fight no more”.

SIRENS

Ridin’ through the city
I’m young, I’m black, I’m guilty
I know one time wanna kill me
They don’t know me but they fear me

The video pictures perfectly every single image that comes in mind when reading the whole lyrics.

Sirens on the way, now you’re laying where the Angels lay.

Mesmerizing chorus with the terrible idea that what’s suppose the sound of protection is probably the sound of danger for Black lives.

Blue lights and sirens inspire a urban myth and fear even for innocent young Black men.

LOGOUT

Everybody insecure, especially people with everything
Why else you think they got everything?
How else you think they got ev—, ooh
Everybody insecure, especially people with everything
Why else you think they got everything?
How else you think I got every—, look

GREY

The best song is probably on the B-side
Won’t be surprised when the label deny
Disagree, Grey
The best song was probably on the demo
But that’s not the one that got you your limo
Limousine, grey
The single the one that wasn’t as honest
But this is what they say make you the hottest
In the game, grey, grey […]

Alterin’ the altitude
Offerin’ the thought for food
Authoring that art that move, mm
Carefully editing every word
Everything got to be charity
Give it my all, these melodies therapy
I keep it thoroughly, PIVOT the legacy
How could you not be moved?
I don’t give them an option to, mm
Don’t nobody want to be great
Everybody want to be seen
And nobody want to be quiet

Jazz will always be part of his music identity. And even if Saba talks about insecurity you can feel how proud he is about his career, and previous works. This rapper has been around for quite some time, at the sides of Chance The Rapper, and behind the success of Noname’s debut EP.

Some people tend to compare Saba to Kendrick Lamar, especially here in the last verse for GREY. However, this is here a wink to his previous EP. He’s rapping just like In Loving Memory.

“But poetry hopelessly hope…”

HEAVEN ALL AROUND ME

No, I can’t feel your pain, but I can see the stars
No, I ain’t leave in vain, but I know we with God
There’s heaven all around me, there’s heaven all around me
There’s heaven all around me, there’s heaven all around
No, I can’t feel your pain, but I can see the stars
No, I ain’t leave in vain, but I know we with God
There’s heaven all around me, there’s heaven all around me
There’s heaven all around me, there’s heaven

A chorus performed with Saba’s father, accomplished soul singer, songwriter and producer in his own right, as well as one of Saba’s earliest musical influences.

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