Rick Ross Samples Obama for Versailles-Worthy ‘Presidential’ Video
From a boss to the Bawse
In 2008, Nas sampled then-Sen. Barack Obama’s impassioned speech after winning Iowa’s Democratic presidential caucus in his song “Black President,” earnestly asking, “America, surprise us / And let a black man guide us.” President Obama’s speech last week at the Democratic National Convention was a more modest, policy-oriented affair, but it did reach a soaring, providence-invoking conclusion. That’s the part Rick Ross has grabbed for his new video accompanying God Forgives, I Don’t’s Pharrell-assisted Maybach swerve “Presidential,” although as you might expect, he deploys it to dramatically less (overtly!) political ends. What’s “presidential” here, between the song’s Boyz II Men-like harmonies and G-funk synths, is a woman, who, as hip-hop video’s dictate, is often seen cavorting in various states of undress. Unlike most rappers in these types of vaguely leering videos, though, the money-counting, yacht-celebrating Ross takes his top off here, too. We are surely blessed to be citizens of these United States.