Kool Keith

Rihanna and Eminem’s most recent collaboration “Monsters” in all honesty just makes no sense to me. I say most recent because I feel as though they have preciously teamed up but that could be incorrect. The only part of the song I can decipher is Rihanna’s hook, not even her bridge* The song puts us as listeners in a very stressful situation: we realize that Rihanna is crazy, and once fully aware of her insanity informed that there is nothing we can possibly do about it.

The intention behind the song is quite confusing..Rihanna repeatedly states that she is “not crazy” while explaining to us how the monsters under her bed have created some sort of alliance with the voices in her head that she is incapable of being saved from.

This whole time I was under the impression that she followed this statement with the words “well, that’s not fair” but a quick Google of the lyrics informed me that she is actually saying “well, that’s nothing’”. Either way, I disagree with both of these statements. There are clearly a multitude of problems with Rihanna’s predicament. I think that if you have a monster, real or imagined, under your bed it is a matter of concern. If you are imagining monsters, there is likely a reason for such delusions and psychiatric help should indefinitely be sought. A real monster under your bed is a larger issue in my opinion, even if you claim to be friends with it, because they are temperamental creatures who thrive off of human consumption.

After informing us that not only does she have a monster under her bed, real or imaginary, that she is friends with she then states that this monster gets along with the voices in her head. I don’t think any elaboration needs to occur about the troubling nature of this second sentence. First sign of psychosis is having voices in your head. All you want to do when you hear these two bits of information is to save her. WE MUST SAVE RIHANNA FROM THE MONSTER WHO IS FRIENDS WITH THE VOICES IN HER HEAD!!

Nope.  We can’t.

You’re trying to save me, stop holding your breath”

She then immediately confirms our assumptions of her mental state, by telling us that she knows that we think she is crazy. And she says it twice, which is accurate because I do think she is doubly so.

At this point, Eminem steps in with some rap explanation about the whole thing. Thank goodness for Slim Shady, he will shed some light onto this for us.

Fun fact about myself: I know every word to every single song on the Eminem Show EP. My younger self dedicated hours to Eminem’s genius lyrics. At the time I didn’t even know who Dick Cheney was, or his wife, but I knew Eminem’s opinion of him due to his wordsmithing ways.

Confident in his ability to clear up the matter of Rihanna’s metaphorical (presumably) monster, his words will undoubtedly inform us as listeners of this song’s purpose.

I wanted the fame, but not the cover of Newsweek
Oh, well, guess beggars can’t be choosey
Wanted to receive attention for my music
Wanted to be left alone in public. Excuse me
For wanting my cake and eat it too, and wanting it both ways
Fame made me a balloon ’cause my ego inflated
When I blew; see, but it was confusing
‘Cause all I wanted to do is be the Bruce Lee of loose leaf
Abused ink, used it as a tool when I blew steam (wooh!)
Hit the lottery, oh wee
But with what I gave up to get it was bittersweet
It was like winning a used mink
Ironic ’cause I think I’m getting so huge I need a shrink
I’m beginning to lose sleep: one sheep, two sheep
Going cuckoo and cooky as Kool Keith
But I’m actually weirder than you think
‘Cause I’m


So the purpose of the song is to break it to the world that both Rihanna and Eminem have gone off the deep end and are fully aware of it?

Particularly confusing lines:

The Bruce Lee of loose leaf?” Is this in reference to tea or paper? Is being the Bruce Lee a positive thing, or a negative? Is it supposed to indicate violent tendencies toward paper products, or the desire for a strong cup of tea? So many questions

It was like winning a used mink,” Is that a thing, winning a used mink? I guess I wouldn’t want that either. I suspect this line was chosen so it would rhyme with the next one.

Ironic cause I think I’m getting so huge I need a shrink,” I cannot argue with this line. I think you are correct, except about the ironic part. Is the acquisition of a used mink the ironic part? Or is the ironic part that this whole song is about the self-awareness of needing to seek assistance from a mental health professional and everyone that is listening agrees that you do?

Going cuckoo and kooky as Kool Keith,” who is this Kool Keith you speak of? Is he the monster under your bed? The uncle that molested you in fifth grade? Is he a public figure?


Screen Shot 2014-01-21 at 2.45.56 PM

oh, so he’s that guy.

Moving onto the next verse, the song only gets more convoluted. Rihanna repeats herself, follows it by “well that’s nothing” (clearly not nothing) and Eminem proceeds to illustrate for us exactly how that is true.

Other notable lyrics:

I think it went wandering down off yonder and stumbled into Jeff VanVonderen” Eminem yodels for his wandering mind to return to him, but it is now hanging with Ol’ Jeff.

I need an interventionist to intervene between me and this monster,” Interventionist? I was unaware of this occupation. I can only assume that it is a person who specializes in interventions. And if your mind is with Jeff, is Jeff the monster? Or are Jeff, the monster, and your mind all kicking it together but quarreling and in need of interventionalistization?

At this point, in all likelihood, I assumed that Slim would wrap it up with some level of coherence.

Call me crazy but I have this vision
One day that I’d walk amongst you a regular civilian
But until then drums get killed and I’m coming straight at
MC’s, blood get spilled and I’ll
Take you back to the days that I’d get on a Dre track
Give every kid who got played that
Pumped up feeling and shit to say back
To the kids who played him
I ain’t here to save the fucking children
But if one kid out of a hundred million
Who are going through a struggle feels it and then relates that’s great
It’s payback, Russell Wilson falling way back
In the draft, turn nothing into something, still can make that
Straw into gold chump, I will spin Rumpelstiltskin in a haystack
Maybe I need a straight jacket, face facts
I am nuts for real, but I’m okay with that
It’s nothing, I’m still friends with the



Yeah, yeah we get it the monsters in your head.


*I only know what these words refer to because I googled the lyrics, and they were labeled as such. 


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