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Brewer's Ads Rapped
[FINAL Edition]
The Washington Post (pre-1997 Fulltext) - Washington, D.C.
Author: Harrington, Richard
Date: Sep 4, 1991
Start Page: b.07
Section: STYLE

St. Ides provided retailers and wholesalers a tape containing the commercials it had run featuring rappers Ice Cube, Eric B. and Rakim, and Yo-Yo. Yo-Yo's ad includes such lines as "Ladies let's try this/puts you in the mood/makes you wanna go oooh!" and "This one keeps you mellow, honey/drink it on the up and up/it's guaranteed to save you money." Ice Cube lines such as "I'm sorry, lemonade never got me buzzed" and Eric B.'s "Too cold to hold, bold like Smith and Wesson/One quart and my whole thought's hip-hop related/write a rhyme and my pen's intoxicated/lyrics are quicker with a sip of malt liquor" are certainly a lot more honest than most booze ads, but McKenzie River must not have been paying too much attention, or it simply didn't understand certain cultural references. How else to explain another Ice Cube spot in which he picks up some St. Ides, and uses the brew as part of his seduction strategy, presented in the raunchiest terms: "When she sees the black can in the trees {St. Ides}/it makes her talk about the birds and the bees/Drink St. Ides and it boots her ass out {gets her high}/Ice Cube is 5000 {out of here} as I pass out."

Also on the rap front line: The Minneapolis city attorney recently informed Minnesota Attorney General Hubert H. Humphrey III that the sale of N.W.A.'s "Efil4zaggin" album to minors is not a prosecutable offense under state and local laws. Last month, Humphrey asked the city attorney to ascertain whether such sales constituted distribution of sexually explicit material harmful to minors (following a complaint from Florida attorney Jack Thompson, who set off the whole 2 Live Crew brouhaha). Humphrey also sent a letter to Minnesota-based Musicland Group warning that the chain might already have violated state statutes. After transcribing and listening to the lyrics to all 16 songs on the N.W.A. album, which was briefly the best-selling album in the country, the city attorney said that while "it is clear that certain of the songs, if issued as singles, would come within the definition of `harmful to minors,' ... taken as a whole," the album is not harmful to minors and sale is not prosecutable.

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