Sam Hurd: Special Teams Ace, Indicted Drug Kingpin, Crummy Rap Chorus

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This was coming, of course. The moment that Sam Hurd earned himself a FEDS cover—the old-fashioned way, by agreeing to buy between five and 10 kilos of coke and an amount of marijuana that weighed as much as the left side of the Bears offensive line outside of a Morton's in suburban Chicago—was the moment that some enterprising goofball started writing coke-rap lyrics rhyming Hurd's name with "birds" or "words" or ya heard." Ian Cohen was all over this back in December. Which means that he was still somehow three days later than Columbia, South Carolina rapper Lul Devoo, who dropped "Sam Hurd" on a not-totally-unexpecting-or-unprepared public back on December 16. As to why it took so long for Lul Devoo's new flavor to get kicked into our ears... well, consider the flavor.

The "Hurd/bird" rhyme is in place, as foretold in prophecy. Devoo even provides a window into his process by means of a behind-the-muzik video description: "Just heard the news , N they got Sam Hurd for drugs , Leave real niggas alone."

The song itself is pretty lousy, although my ear for shouty low-country coke-o fantasy-rap is not what it was. By the laughably rigid standards of this mini-genre, Devoo does hit his marks—if nothing else, he's very clear about where he stands on snitches and Feds and undercovers, and on how much import he places on staying true to the rules of the game. Which, in a style that's so incredibly proscribed in its standards and means of expression, is maybe the point—reiterative, conservative, inside-the-lines coke rap songs, mostly function like beeps arriving from some far-off satellite, communicating the message "I'm here, I'm here, I'm here," and nothing else. There's not room for much else. What I'm saying is that it's kind of disappointing Clipse didn't get here first.

But if there's nothing much that sets "Sam Hurd" apart from its like except for being the first to seize upon the Hurd opportunity, that's still not nothing. It's worth noting, maybe, that Lul Devoo already had a song called "Larry Bird," which isn't much better than "Sam Hurd" but does have a weirdly Danny Elfman-ian feel to its beat. He is presumably working on songs called "Yay Talese" or "Phil Coke" or "Selling Cocaine And Talking About Selling Cocaine Exactly By The Rules."

Really, if you're going to make an off-the-rack song depicting the trife life—snitch issues, Feds, snitch issues—in America's right-to-work states, it's probably better to pick a chorus subject who's a little more distinctive or obscure to compensate for the off-the-rackness. Perhaps your favorite detective from the Memphis episodes of A&E's The First 48? Yes, that's a good choice:

It's okay to be different, everyone! Also this does not mean you can't make another, better Sam Hurd song.

Thanks to the mighty Dr. LawyerIndianChief for the tip on "Sam Hurd," and @KristinIrene for "Caroline Mason."

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