Get SF Weekly Newsletters

Monday, November 14, 2011

Lil B Drops "I Got AIDS," Wants You to Get Tested, Lies About "Having Sex With 40 Girls"

Posted By on Mon, Nov 14, 2011 at 3:45 PM

Lil B, conscientious liar.
  • Lil B, conscientious liar.

One of the most important things about Lil B is his doe-eyed earnestness. Dude claims he's gay, claims he's God, claims he's deeply concerned about the state of the world, and he puts those soft-bellied worries and ridiculous boasts in such honest terms that you can't help but believe him. (Or hate him.)

So it is with "I Got AIDS," the latest in a long series of unsubtle titles from the Berkeley rapper, and the first single off of his new BasedGod Velli mixtape. (Which is, what, his third mixtape this week?)

Yes, Lil B's new song is a warning call about the devastating virus -- an urge, in the fame of a fictional narrative, to have guys wrap it up or keep it in their pants and for everyone to get tested no matter what. As Lil B told our own contributor, Tamara Palmer, in a post for MTV:

"A lot of guys think it's cool to have sex with a lot of women. I'm not having sex with all these women. I lie about it a lot; I lie about having sex with 40 girls. I'm not doing that, and I want people to know, if you are doing that, you are at high risk of getting AIDS or other STDs and you need to make sure you get tested."

How is "I Got AIDS" as a song? As you may have expected, we're in serious Lil B mode here, not jokey or obtuse Lil B. There's a basic boom-bap, a somber phone convo, and a spoken warning to the listeners. It's certainly not the most nuanced or creative track Lil B has made, although that clearly isn't the point.

Many seem to find "I Got AIDS" another irritating ploy for attention in a discography filled with absurd lyrics and inane boasts. Certainly Lil B has a knack for issuing head-turning, half-rapped statements. But he also means many of them. On this song's YouTube page, he asks fans to make videos of themselves getting tested and send them to him. Judging from previous video projects, he's likely to get a response. So here again, there's just enough substance behind B's showmanship to convince the willing listener that his earnestness is not an act. It's really him. And this song is really him growing his considerable fame through honest compassion, if not fascinating music. As with much of the Based God's work, the song "I Got AIDS" is itself less important than all the ideas that go with it.

See also:

Insurgent Hip-Hop: Kreayshawn, Lil B, and Bay Area Rappers Throw Out the Rules


Follow us on Twitter @SFAllShookDown, follow Ian S. Port @iPORT, and like us at

  • Pin It

Tags: , , ,

About The Author

Ian S. Port


Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

Popular Stories

  1. Most Popular Stories
  2. Stories You Missed

Like us on Facebook


  • clipping at Brava Theater Sept. 11
    Sub Pop recording artists 'clipping.' brought their brand of noise-driven experimental hip hop to the closing night of 2016's San Francisco Electronic Music Fest this past Sunday. The packed Brava Theater hosted an initially seated crowd that ended the night jumping and dancing against the front of the stage. The trio performed a set focused on their recently released Sci-Fi Horror concept album, 'Splendor & Misery', then delved into their dancier and more aggressive back catalogue, and recent single 'Wriggle'. Opening performances included local experimental electronic duo 'Tujurikkuja' and computer music artist 'Madalyn Merkey.'"