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99 Problems
Jay-Z Lyrics


Jump to: Overall Meaning ↴  Line by Line Meaning ↴

If you're having girl problems I feel bad for you son
I got ninety-nine problems but a bitch ain't one

I got the rap patrol on the gat patrol
Foes that want to make sure my casket's closed
Rap critics that say he's "Money, cash, hoes"
I'm from the hood, stupid, what type of facts are those?
If you grew up with holes in your Zapatos
You'd celebrate the minute you was having dough
I'm like, "Fuck critics" you can kiss my whole asshole
If you don't like my lyrics, you can press fast forward
Got beef with radio if I don't play they show
They don't play my hits, well, I don't give a shit, so
Rap mags try and use my black ass
So advertisers can give 'em more cash for ads, fuckers
I don't know what you take me as
Or understand the intelligence that Jay-Z has
I'm from rags to riches, niggas I ain't dumb
I got ninety nine problems but a bitch ain't one, hit me

Ninety nine problems but a bitch ain't one
If you having girl problems I feel bad for you son
I got ninety nine problems but a bitch ain't one, hit me

The year's '94 and my trunk is raw
In my rearview mirror is the motherfucking law
I got two choices y'all, pull over the car or
Bounce on the devil, put the pedal to the floor
Now I ain't trying to see no highway chase with Jake
Plus I got a few dollars I can fight the case
So I, pull over to the side of the road
I heard, "Son, do you know why I'm stopping you for?"
"'Cause I'm young and I'm black and my hat's real low
Do I look like a mind reader, sir? I don't know
Am I under arrest or should I guess some more?"
"Well you was doing fifty-five in a fifty-four" (uh huh)
"License and registration and step out of the car"
"Are you carrying a weapon on you, I know a lot of you are"
I ain't stepping out of shit, all my papers legit
"Well do you mind if I look around the car a little bit?"
Well my glove compartment is locked, so is the trunk in the back
And I know my rights so you goin' need a warrant for that
"Aren't you sharp as a tack? You some type of lawyer or something?"
"Somebody important or something?"
Well, I ain't passed the bar, but I know a little bit
Enough that you won't illegally search my shit
"Well we'll see how smart you are when the K-9 come"
I got ninety nine problems but a bitch ain't one, hit me

Ninety nine problems but a bitch ain't one
If you having girl problems I feel bad for you son
I got ninety nine problems but a bitch ain't one, hit me

Ninety nine problems but a bitch ain't one
If you having girl problems I feel bad for you son
I got ninety nine problems but a bitch ain't one, hit me

Now once upon a time not too long ago
A nigga like myself had to strong-arm a ho
This is not a ho in the sense of having a pussy
But a pussy having no goddamn sense try and push me
I tried to ignore 'em, talk to the Lord
Pray for 'em, 'cause some fools just love to perform
You know the type, loud as a motorbike
But wouldn't bust a grape in a fruit fight
The only thing that's goin' happen is I'ma get to clapping and
He and his boys goin' be yapping to the Captain
And there I go trapped in the Kit-Kat again
Back through the system with the riff-raff again
Fiends on the floor scratching again
Paparazzi's with they cameras, snapping 'em
D.A. tried to give a nigga shaft again
Half a mil' for bail 'cause I'm African
All because this fool was harassing them
Trying to play the boy like he's saccharine
But ain't nothing sweet 'bout how I hold my gun
I got ninety-nine problems being a bitch ain't one, hit me

Ninety-nine problems but a bitch ain't one
If you having girl problems I feel bad for you son
I got ninety-nine problems but a bitch ain't one, hit me

Ninety-nine problems but a bitch ain't one
If you having girl problems I feel bad for you son
I got ninety-nine problems but a bitch ain't one, hit me

Having girl problems I feel bad for you son
I got ninety-nine problems and a bitch ain't one

You're crazy for this one, Rick, it's your boy

Overall Meaning

"99 Problems" is a song that was released by Jay-Z in 2004, and it became one of his biggest hits. The song is a commentary on Jay-Z's life and success as a rapper. In the first verse, Jay-Z talks about his success and the critics that come with it. He states that he has 99 problems, but a woman isn't one of them. The second verse is a fictional story of a man who gets pulled over by the police, and he outsmarts them, which they don't expect because of his race. In the third verse, he talks about his past experiences and how he had to toughen up to survive on the streets. The song has a great tempo and delivery which distinguishes it from most rap songs.


In fact, the music for "99 problems" was produced by Rick Rubin, who is known for his work with artists like Beastie Boys and Run-DMC. The song features a sample of "The Big Beat" by Billy Squier, which sets the mood from the start. The song's theme is based on an old Ice-T tune, the well-known "99 problems but a bitch ain't one." However, there is a slight difference in the lyrics compared to Ice-T's, and Jay-Z adds his own perspective. The song was a huge commercial success, and it peaked at #30 on the Billboard's Hot 100 in 2004. In 2009, Rolling Stone magazine put the song at number 172 on its list of the 500 greatest songs of all time.


The song has become a cultural phenomenon and has even been studied by academics. Some of the themes that are explored in the song include race, class, and social status. The song has also been the subject of many covers and remixes, with artists from different genres, countries and generations. "99 Problems" is a classic example of a rap song that has transcended the genre and has become a part of popular culture.


Line by Line Meaning

If you're having girl problems I feel bad for you son
I sympathize with your issues with women


I got ninety-nine problems but a bitch ain't one
I am dealing with many struggles but problems with women are not one of them


I got the rap patrol on the gat patrol
I have security watching over me


Foes that want to make sure my casket's closed
I have enemies who want me dead


Rap critics that say he's 'Money, cash, hoes'
Critics who accuse me of only rapping about materialistic things


I'm from the hood, stupid, what type of facts are those?
Being from the hood does not automatically make me a certain way


If you grew up with holes in your Zapatos
If you grew up poor


You'd celebrate the minute you was having dough
You would be happy once you started making money


I'm like, 'Fuck critics' you can kiss my whole asshole
I don't care what the critics have to say about me


If you don't like my lyrics, you can press fast forward
If you don't like my music, you have the option to skip it


Got beef with radio if I don't play they show
I have issues with radio stations if they do not play my music


They don't play my hits, well, I don't give a shit, so
If my music isn't played on the radio, I don't care


Rap mags try and use my black ass
Magazines try to exploit me because I am black


So advertisers can give 'em more cash for ads, fuckers
These magazines are being paid by advertisers to feature me


I don't know what you take me as
I am unsure of how you perceive me


Or understand the intelligence that Jay-Z has
Most people do not realize how intelligent I am


I'm from rags to riches, niggas I ain't dumb
I came from a poor background but that does not make me stupid


The year's '94 and my trunk is raw
It is the year 1994 and I have drugs in my car


In my rearview mirror is the motherfucking law
The police are behind me


I got two choices y'all, pull over the car or bounce on the devil, put the pedal to the floor
I have to decide whether to pull over and face arrest or flee from the police


Now I ain't trying to see no highway chase with Jake
I do not want to be involved in a high-speed police pursuit


Plus I got a few dollars I can fight the case
I have enough money to hire a good lawyer and fight the charges in court


So I, pull over to the side of the road
I decide to stop the car


I heard, 'Son, do you know why I'm stopping you for?'
The police officer questions me


'Cause I'm young and I'm black and my hat's real low
I assume I am being stopped because of my race and style of dress


Do I look like a mind reader, sir? I don't know
I respond sarcastically to the officer's question


Am I under arrest or should I guess some more?
I ask if I am being placed under arrest


'Well you was doing fifty-five in a fifty-four' (uh huh)
The officer explains why I was pulled over


'License and registration and step out of the car'
The officer asks for my license and registration and orders me to exit the vehicle


'Are you carrying a weapon on you, I know a lot of you are'
The officer asks if I am carrying a weapon, implying that many people in my community are armed


I ain't stepping out of shit, all my papers legit
I refuse to exit my car but my paperwork is in order


'Well do you mind if I look around the car a little bit?'
The officer asks for permission to search my car


Well my glove compartment is locked, so is the trunk in the back
I inform the officer that my glove compartment and trunk are locked


And I know my rights so you goin' need a warrant for that
I remind the officer that a warrant is needed to search my car


'Aren't you sharp as a tack? You some type of lawyer or something?'
The officer is impressed with my knowledge of my rights


'Somebody important or something?'
The officer assumes that I must be a person of importance to know my rights


Well, I ain't passed the bar, but I know a little bit
I have not become a licensed lawyer but I still know my rights


Enough that you won't illegally search my shit
I know enough to prevent an officer from illegally searching my belongings


'Well we'll see how smart you are when the K-9 come'
The officer threatens to bring in a police dog to search my car


Now once upon a time not too long ago
I am telling a story from my past


A nigga like myself had to strong-arm a ho
I had to use physical force to control a woman


This is not a ho in the sense of having a pussy
I am not referring to a promiscuous woman


But a pussy having no goddamn sense try and push me
I am referring to a woman who lacks intelligence and tries to provoke me


I tried to ignore 'em, talk to the Lord
I tried to ignore this woman and pray for guidance


Pray for 'em, 'cause some fools just love to perform
I prayed for her because some people just crave attention


You know the type, loud as a motorbike
I am describing a type of person who is very obnoxious


But wouldn't bust a grape in a fruit fight
Despite their obnoxious demeanor, they are not confrontational


The only thing that's goin' happen is I'ma get to clapping and
If provoked, the only thing that will happen is I will start shooting


He and his boys goin' be yapping to the Captain
If I shoot, the victim and his friends will report me to the police


And there I go trapped in the Kit-Kat again
If I am arrested, I will be stuck in jail again


Back through the system with the riff-raff again
I will be caught up in the criminal justice system again


Fiends on the floor scratching again
Addicts will be suffering from withdrawal in the jail cell


Paparazzi's with they cameras, snapping 'em
News reporters will be taking pictures of me being arrested


D.A. tried to give a nigga shaft again
The District Attorney is trying to unfairly prosecute me


Half a mil' for bail 'cause I'm African
My bail is set at a high price because of my race


All because this fool was harassing them
I am being punished because I retaliated against someone harassing me


Trying to play the boy like he's saccharine
The victim was trying to sweet-talk me or act innocent


But ain't nothing sweet 'bout how I hold my gun
Despite their sweet talk, I am still a dangerous person


I got ninety-nine problems being a bitch ain't one, hit me
Although I have many issues, problems with women are not one of them


Ninety-nine problems but a bitch ain't one
I have many struggles, but problems with women are not one of them


I got ninety-nine problems and a bitch ain't one
I am dealing with many struggles but problems with women are not one of them


Having girl problems I feel bad for you son
I sympathize with your issues with women


You're crazy for this one, Rick, it's your boy
I am giving a shout-out to my friend Rick who produced this song




Lyrics ยฉ Sony/ATV Music Publishing LLC, Kobalt Music Publishing Ltd., Warner Chappell Music, Inc.
Written by: Tracy Lauren Marrow, Norman Landsberg, Felix Pappalardi, Rick Rubin, Leslie Weinstein, John Ventura, Shawn Carter, Alphonso Henderson, Felix A. Pappalardi, George Jr. Clinton, John Elis Ventura, Shawn Corey Carter, Tracey Lauren Marrow, Weinstein A. Lesli

Lyrics Licensed & Provided by LyricFind
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Most interesting comment from YouTube:

@markmark8826

Even when you go to cemetery !
Share the vibes with dead they had S0 much

S0 much

make sure !stacked up cash money stashed sm where!
Time to give up to HeemWolf!
HeemWolf always comes back always visits again and again !
Itโ€™s a bout time S0 far S0 good๐Ÿค”



All comments from YouTube:

@stellarwind1946

This was Jay-Z at his pinnacle. Innovative, clever, and highly motivated.

@DetectiveNineHD

hes also in a cult

@coreyhutton478

Ignorant, Racist, Full Of Shit. The Type Of Moron To Marry Beyonce. LOL!

@elisjongoseni3225

โ€‹@@DetectiveNineHDOh, you 2Pac fans, get away with this BS.

@dandefish

FINALLY UNCENSORED

@xxxtentacion_fan4855

Fr tho

@carabistouille95

was done already,
but can't comment !!!๐Ÿ˜œ๐Ÿ˜œ๐Ÿ˜œ

and fvk it, he's lyricly killing everybody there !!!
Next : Roc Natiion

and ths trent reznor prod bruh ๐Ÿ˜œ๐Ÿ–ค

@alsherrard7524

That rap is legendary

@luis13kar_art9

Renegade ๐Ÿ˜…๐Ÿ˜…๐Ÿ˜…

@kitaets2365

For sure

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