When a Car is More Than Just a Car
The first time I heard the song, “Fast Car” by Wyclef Jean, I really liked it because it was catchy. After listening to it a few more times, I realized there was a lot of meaning to it. To me, the main goal of this song is to teach the young listeners a difficult lesson to be careful before they do something that could potentially ruin their lives. Also, Jean is showing his listeners there is help out there and tomorrow is not promised – everybody needs take advantage of their available resources so they do not harm themselves. Basically, Jean wants everyone to be careful with the life that they currently have rather than wasting time here on earth. Jean explains his story by using a type of music that will get to young people without making them feel like they are being scolded. He also relates his verses to famous people such as Kanye West, Notorious B.I.G., Tupac, Sean Bell, Left Eye Lopez, and an innocent 16 year old girl; by using this type of song writing style, young people will listen to the song and learn from it rather than avoiding the topic. The first verse of the song is allduding to Kanye West having a major car accident. He was driving home from a recording studio in Los Angelos at three in the morning when he fell asleep at the wheel. He totaled his car and broke his jaw severely. After this accident, Kanye wrote a song called “Jesus Walks.” It was part of the album called “Through the Wire,” which Kanye West actually produced while he had wires holding his jaw together(“Kanye West”). The first verse of Wyclef Jean’s song says “I heard a man say Jesus walks, me myself I heard Jesus talk.” This line shows how Jesus is real and how both West and Jean have personally had encounters with Him. The next lines say, “Cause when I heard his beat I felt Jesus' force, I heard it Through The Wire that he made it out the coma, from a fast car.” This line shows West’s devastating accident and the aftermath of it. Kanye was in a coma and nearly died because he failed to be responsible with his car. The purpose of verse one is to show the listeners that driving at late hours of the night or while tired is not safe. It is better to stay somewhere rather than risking a life by driving a car. West was lucky to survive his accident; not all situations have fortunate outcomes however. West dealt with a lot of pain personally, while other peoples’ problems involve their enemies. The second verse of this song is about Tupac and Notorious B.I.G., who is also known as Biggie. Tupac and Biggie had a feud that went on for days before anything was done about it. Biggie was a bad boy, and Tupac was an outlaw. This is explained in the song when Jean writes, “Some of us are Bad Boys, Some of us are outlaws.” Biggie took the name “Bad Boys” when he and his producer decided to pair up to make music. Tupac was considered an outlaw because he did not necessarily have any place where he belonged. One day, during November of 1994, Biggie shot Tupac multiple times in the lobby of a recording studio in New York and stole a large amount of jewelry. Everyone suspected Biggie, but he denied it and never got the full blame for it (Huey). During the song, Jean says, “Unsolved mystery, the killer gets away.” It is very clear he is talking about the incident between Biggie and Tupac. Eventually, their dispute carries on into Vegas and LA, where Tupac is murdered in his SUV from a shot by a neighboring car. The song also explains this because Jean talks about the drama moving on to Vegas and LA and driving a fast car. This rivalry was out of control, especially when Tupac was eventually murdered. Everyone thought the world would become a better place because people would learn from the situation. This was not the case, however, because the rivalries got bigger and America became more violent in the 20th century. Jean is once again trying to show everyone the importance of our lives; he does not want anyone to get...
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