Remember back in the day, when rap was kind of new, and there was this huge uproar from parents' groups and politicians about how the lyrics were so violent, they would undoubtedly warp the minds of the world's youth? Well, those folks had a lot of nerve, considering the tradition of the murder ballad goes so far back, people aren't entirely sure where it started, and those songs can be at least as violent as any rapper's jam about a gang battle. We've included lyrics from murder ballads both old and new, mixed in with lines from the choicest of gangsta rap, and we challenge you to see if you can tell who's getting killed over which gang colors they're wearing, and who's getting killed because they got caught cheatin'. A link to the answers is now at the end of the article. A. "A voice spoke to me and it slowly started saying/ 'Bring your lifestyle to me I'll make it better'/ How long will I live?/ 'Eternal life and forever'" B. "She was low down and triflin'/ And she was cold and mean/ Kind of evil make me want to grab my submachine" C. He said 'Mr. Motherfucker, you know who I am'/ And the barkeeper said, 'No, and I don't give a good goddamn'" D. "Go easy with your cold-fanged anger/ I'll stick my knife right down your throat" E. "I never asked for nothing I don't demand of myself/ Honesty, loyalty, friends and then wealth/ Death before dishonor and I tell you what else/ I tighten my belt before I beg for help" F. "You'd better murder me/ Put me to rest/ 'Cause if you don't I'll come out shooting/ With my head in a bird's chest" G. "I didn't wanna /But she started to holler/ So I had to hit it" H. "And in this land of conditions/ I'm not above suspicion/ I won't attack you/ But I won't back you" I. "And in my mind I'm a blind man doing time/ Look to my future cause my past is all behind me/ Is it a crime, to fight, for what is mine?/ Everybody's dying, tell me what's the use of trying?" J. "I no longer see the shadows that once kept me strong / And I'm starting to get that same feeling that kept me raw" K. "Wanted a pass/ So she relaxed/ Now the little groupie's getting' chopped up in the back" L. "I read the paper there with Joe the Butcher/ He said one glance is all it took you, she's a real looker/ They say her old man's a bootlegger/ Transporting in any weather" M. "As the 'copter dropped the gas he shouted 'Who cares?'/ They could hear him laughing as they started up the stairs" N. "Well the weeks went by and Spring turned to Summer/ And Summer faded into Fall/ And it turns out he was a missing person/ Who nobody missed at all" O. "The gospel was told, some souls it swallowed whole/ Mentally they fold, and they eventually sold"
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