The Game, "Shake"

I’m not a big fan of The Game. He’s always seemed like he’s trying very hard to be something he’s not. And his raps rely far too heavily on name-dropping and rehashing petty hip-hop gossip. (Also, and sort of speaking of which, did you ever watch the clips of his appearance, pre-music-career, on the dating show “Change of Heart”? Totally ridiculous.) He gets some good beats, though. Like the one, made by Miami production team Cool & Dre, for his new single, “Shake”-which samples Sam Cooke’s classic 1964 hit of the same name. The video is a pretty ho-hum montage of everyday L.A. rapper stuff. Ferraris and strippers playing pool, etc. Funny in that it’s so low-budget. Seems like you either go big-statement, all-out production these days, like Lady Gaga or M.I.A., or save the money for something else and just kinda throw something together for YouTube. T.I., too, with his big fresh-out-jail comeback song, “I’m Back.” (Not the most original title, as we’ve noted before.) The video, with its cheesy Photoshop tricks and super-fake fire and everything, couldn’t be lamer. But, again, a strong beat goes a long way.