Words: Drew Millard
Gestating for nearly four years due to major-label politricks, Sir Lucious Left Foot: The Son Of Chico Dusty, the first solo release by Big Boi (one half of the dynamic hip-hop duo Outkast if you didn't already know), finally saw the light of day last week. And despite its long-winded title (seemingly designed to drive music writers to the point of sheer madness) and tragic absence of partner-in-rhyme Andre 3000, the LP is positively bonkers. Anchored by Big Boi’s formidable flow and undeniable swagger, the album finds its sound in high-tech, good-time electro-funk and has enough bottom end to tip the Richter Scale. In short, Sir Lucious Left Foot is awesome.
In the years building up to the album’s release, Big made about a million videos to support the damn thing, some high-budget, some no-budget, and all interesting in their own way. Let’s take a look back at what he’s produced.
(Note: Some of the language used in these videos is decidedly explicit. So if you’re at work, headphones are recommended.)
The first rumblings of Big Boi’s solo career began with ‘Sumthing’s Gotta Give,’ a laid-back number featuring Mary J. Blige, basically meant as Big's way to urge everybody to vote for Barack Obama. Dropped from the album because of the physical impossibility of voting for Obama in the year 2010.
Mister Boi was relatively silent for a period, but then in late 2009 went on a promotional tear for the album, starting with this micro-budget video for killer track 'Shine Blockas,' which features the transcendently goofy intro where Big buys socks and freestyles inside a Wal-Mart. This video also answers the age-old question of, "What's one to do when his guest rhymer is unable to perform in the video due to incarceration?" The answer, it turns out, is to show a picture of him every once and a while and then lip-sync his verse.
And now, for something completely different--Big Boi hanging out with a penguin.
Things really started popping off earlier this year, when Big went on a promotional tear, even finding himself on The Martha Stewart Show, where he introduced Martha to his mom and introduced a massive level of awkward to the rest of us. Actually, he might have just been trying to shore up his street cred, seeing as Martha has been to jail and he hasn't.
As if to prove to everyone that he was still cool after the Martha appearance, Big Boi hit the world with the epic 'Shutterbug' video in short order. This banger was produced by Scott Storch of all people, and features a real live, actual vocoder, as played by a real live, actual puppet.
While decidely less high-budget, the video for 'Fo Yo Sorrows' was no less inventive and fun, if significantly more spaced out--its creation appears to have been fueled by a veritable mountain of leafy green substances. As if you'd expect a song that manages to jam together Big Boi, Too $hort, a dude with waist-length dreadlocks, and the Godfather of Funk himself, George Clinton, to be anything other than a weed anthem. If we may opine, George is looking pretty rough these days, but he still kills it. The man is a sentient visual effects bonanza.
Next came the visual for the opera-sampling 'General Patton,' a song whose opera-sampling grandeur could only be matched by a trip to the bowling alley. Luckily, Big Boi recognized this, and shot this video accordingly.
The most recent clip from Big Boi is for 'Follow Us,' which features the Marietta, Georgia alt-rock band Vonnegut, who are signed to Big Boi's Purple Ribbon label. Worth watching in order to witness the Vonnegut dudes falling flat on their faces trying to match Big Boi's cool. Watch for Sir Lucious Left Foot's gigantic fur coat, which is basically the star of this video.
That about wraps it up for today's Big Boi video round up. Keep your eyes peeled for the video for the next single 'Tangerine' (Featuring T.I.), which at the pace he's going at, should appear on the internet within the next ten minutes.
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