God Lives Through
A Tribe Called Quest Lyrics


Jump to: Overall Meaning ↴  Line by Line Meaning ↴

Oh my God, oh my God, oh my God, oh my God
Oh my God, oh my God, oh my God, oh my God
Oh my God, oh my God, oh my God, oh my God
Oh my God, oh my God, oh my God, oh my God

There's a million MCs that claim they want some
But see, I create sounds that make your ears go numb
Peace to Sayres Ave, yeah, you know how we go
My best friend Steven at the Home Depot
Laurelton is in the house, I can't forget Southside
Walk past MCs like that girl did The Pharcyde
I'm labeled as the cat's meow, the MC with the know-how
Act like you know, not now but right now
Beast of the East, on MCs, I have a feast
I'd eat that ass like quiche, crack a smile like Shanice
Straight outta Jamaica, seen? Jamaica, Queens
But you could find me out in Georgia, or anywhere in between
Now if my partners don't look good, Malik won't look good
If Malik don't look good, then Quest won't look good
If the Quest don't look good, then Queens won't look good
But since our sounds are universal, New York won't look good
Picture Phife losing a battle, come on, get off it
Put down the microphone, son, surrender, forfeit
Did I hear something 'bout a crew? What they wanna do?
You better call Mr. Babyface so he can bring out the cool in you
Or it'll be a sad love song being sung by Toni Braxton
And I'll dissect you like a fraction
All you wannabe top cat MCs, I'll pop you like a zit
You wanna be the champ, you more like Chief Some-shit
Big up myself every time when it comes to this
Mcs be running scared as if they're watching The Exorcist
I kick more game than a crackhead from Hempstead
My styles are milk, man, you'd think that I was breastfed
You know the steelo when the diggy Dawg is on the scene
I dedicate this to all the MCs outta Queens
That goes for Onyx, LL, Run DMC
Akinyele, Nasty Nas and the Extra P
You need a chart, straight up and down, man, there ain't no other
Nuff respect to all my peeps that made the album cover
Yo, Tip, don't worry none, you know I get the party jumping
Get on the mic and break 'em off a little, little something
Yo, Tip, don't worry none, you know I gets the party jumping
Get on the mic, my man, and break 'em off a little something (ooh)

Oh my God, oh my God (la, la, da, da)
Oh my God, oh my God (shooby, do, do, do)
Oh my God, oh my God (la, la, la, la)
Oh my God, oh my God (shooby, do, do, do)
Oh my God, oh my God (la, la, la, la)
Oh my God, oh my God (shooby, do, do, do)
Oh my God, oh my God (you know I'm on the other, for the top 40)
Oh, my God, oh my God (we gotta do it like this)

We got the funk doody don shit, clearly, it's the bomb shit
So recognize me, kids memorize me
Every day, I be scrounging, really I be lounging
I play the down low, very, very incognito
Aries is my sign, I know that I can rhyme
Sometimes I rhyme in riddles, plus I make the honeys wiggle
Intellect is the major, some heads like to wager
The skills on the hill, overlooking dollar bills
Man, you're crazy, thinking you can phase me
The Ab doesn't study mere nonsense, money
Life seems to need me, MCs seem too cheesy
With their doody-ass renditions of defeating competition
I rock to the roll, man, yes, I'm a soul man
Bet your bottom dollar Vinia will make you holler
As you stand at attention, did I forget to mention?
Mcs will give me twenty if I sense that they act funny
Lyrics are abundant, right there, I sound redundant
Just mentioning the fact that the area is fat
I dwell in the under, so honey it's no wonder
That I get plenty of tail, well I even get white
I'ma bank-hitting head crack, there, money, take that
Breaking niggas off, cut their bank, then I'm off
All my Nikes match my 'Lo hat, beat joint is mad fat
Got the cutter of the box if a kid think he's ox
For tier means creator, the poetry relator
It's hemmed like Betsy Ross, let me tell you who's the boss

Oh my God (la, la, la)
Oh my God (la, la, la)
Oh my God (la, la, la, smooth it out, y'all)
Oh my God (la, la, la)
Oh my God (la, la, la)
Oh my God (la, la, la)
Oh my God (la, la, la)
(La, la, la)

Queens got a
Brooklyn got a
Bronx got a
Staten Island got a
Long Island got the zone
Jersey got a
Philly got a
Milwaukee got a
La got a
Oaktown got a zone

La, la, la, la, la, la
La, la, la, la, la, la





See I like to get down, Jack

Overall Meaning

The opening lines of A Tribe Called Quest's song God Lives Through are an invocation. The repeated phrase "oh my God," spoken by Q-Tip, serves as a prelude to a rap that addresses the impact and significance of artistic creation. Within the song, rappers Tip and Phife Dawg assert their identity as artists who create sounds that not only evoke a physical response but also tap into something spiritual. The repetition of "oh my God" emphasizes the overwhelming power of music, described as "the funk doody don shit" that is "the bomb shit."


The song touches on a variety of themes, many of which ultimately come back to the idea of artistic expression as a form of transcendence. Q-Tip references his upbringing in Queens, giving a shout-out to his home borough and the many rappers who have emerged from there, including LL Cool J, Run DMC, and Onyx. He also highlights the importance of community, both in terms of making music and simply staying true to oneself. As Q-Tip raps, "If Malik don't look good, then Quest won't look good." This emphasis on loyalty and mutual support is contrasted with the competitive rhetoric of many other rappers of the time, who sought to assert their dominance over others.


Line by Line Meaning

Oh my God, oh my God, oh my God, oh my God
Expressing astonishment or excitement multiple times


There's a million MCs that claim they want some
There are countless MCs who say they want to compete


But see, I create sounds that make your ears go numb
My unique style of music captivates and mesmerizes listeners


Peace to Sayres Ave, yeah, you know how we go
Greetings to Sayres Ave, we have a specific way of doing things there


My best friend Steven at the Home Depot
Referring to a close friend named Steven who works at Home Depot


Laurelton is in the house, I can't forget Southside
Acknowledging the presence and significance of Laurelton and Southside


Walk past MCs like that girl did The Pharcyde
Ignoring and surpassing other MCs, just like a girl did with The Pharcyde


I'm labeled as the cat's meow, the MC with the know-how
I'm recognized as highly skilled and knowledgeable in the hip-hop community


Act like you know, not now but right now
Show confidence and assertiveness immediately, not at a later time


Beast of the East, on MCs, I have a feast
I dominate and excel over other MCs in the Eastern region


I'd eat that ass like quiche, crack a smile like Shanice
I would defeat them with ease and celebrate the victory


Straight outta Jamaica, seen? Jamaica, Queens
From Jamaica, Queens, with a Jamaican influence


But you could find me out in Georgia, or anywhere in between
I'm not confined to one location, I can be found anywhere


Now if my partners don't look good, Malik won't look good
The appearance and reputation of my companions reflect on me


If Malik don't look good, then Quest won't look good
If I don't appear good, it reflects poorly on my group, A Tribe Called Quest


If the Quest don't look good, then Queens won't look good
If my group doesn't appear good, it tarnishes the reputation of Queens


But since our sounds are universal, New York won't look good
Our music transcends boundaries and represents New York well


Picture Phife losing a battle, come on, get off it
Imagine Phife Dawg, one of the group members, losing a rap battle, it's implausible


Put down the microphone, son, surrender, forfeit
Quit rapping and accept defeat, give up the microphone


Did I hear something 'bout a crew? What they wanna do?
Did I hear talk about a group? What are their intentions or plans?


You better call Mr. Babyface so he can bring out the cool in you
Contact Mr. Babyface, a producer known for his cool vibe, to enhance your style


Or it'll be a sad love song being sung by Toni Braxton
Your future will be filled with heartbreak and sorrow, like a song by Toni Braxton


And I'll dissect you like a fraction
I will analyze and break you apart like a mathematical fraction


All you wannabe top cat MCs, I'll pop you like a zit
I will eliminate and defeat all aspiring top-tier MCs easily


You wanna be the champ, you more like Chief Some-shit
You aspire to be a champion, but you're more like a mediocre figure


Big up myself every time when it comes to this
I celebrate and acknowledge my own accomplishments every time when it comes to music


MCs be running scared as if they're watching The Exorcist
Other MCs feel fearful and intimidated, as if they're watching a terrifying movie like The Exorcist


I kick more game than a crackhead from Hempstead
I provide more knowledge and insight than someone addicted to crack in Hempstead


My styles are milk, man, you'd think that I was breastfed
My rap styles are so natural and nourishing, it's as if I was breastfed


You know the steelo when the diggy Dawg is on the scene
You recognize my style and swagger when I, Phife Dawg, am present


I dedicate this to all the MCs outta Queens
This song is a tribute to all the talented MCs from Queens


That goes for Onyx, LL, Run DMC
This dedication includes iconic hip-hop groups like Onyx, LL Cool J, and Run DMC


Akinyele, Nasty Nas and the Extra P
It also includes individual artists like Akinyele, Nas, and Extra P


You need a chart, straight up and down, man, there ain't no other
You require a visual representation to grasp the truth, there's no alternative


Nuff respect to all my peeps that made the album cover
Showing gratitude and respect to the people involved in creating the album cover


Yo, Tip, don't worry none, you know I get the party jumping
Hey, Tip (referring to Q-Tip), don't stress, I know how to make the party lively and energetic


Get on the mic and break 'em off a little, little something
Take the microphone and impress the audience with a short, impactful performance


We got the funk doody don shit, clearly, it's the bomb shit
We possess the highest quality and impressive funk-style music, it's undeniably amazing


So recognize me, kids memorize me
Acknowledge and remember my talent, young ones study my lyrics


Every day, I be scrounging, really I be lounging
Every day, I'm searching for inspiration while relaxing and taking it easy


I play the down low, very, very incognito
I operate in a discreet and secretive manner


Aries is my sign, I know that I can rhyme
As an Aries, I believe in my ability to excel in rhyming and hip-hop


Sometimes I rhyme in riddles, plus I make the honeys wiggle
Occasionally, I use cryptic language in my lyrics and attract attention from the ladies


Intellect is the major, some heads like to wager
My intellect and cleverness are my greatest assets, some people like to bet on it


The skills on the hill, overlooking dollar bills
My exceptional skills are valued and rewarded, even as I observe financial success from a distance


Man, you're crazy, thinking you can phase me
You're delusional if you believe you can affect or defeat me


The Ab doesn't study mere nonsense, money
Phife Dawg doesn't waste time on trivial matters, only focused on wealth and success


Life seems to need me, MCs seem too cheesy
Life seems to require my presence, while other MCs appear unoriginal and lacking substance


With their doody-ass renditions of defeating competition
Mocking and dismissing their weak attempts at defeating competition


I rock to the roll, man, yes, I'm a soul man
I embrace and excel in the hip-hop culture, I'm truly a soulful individual


Bet your bottom dollar Vinia will make you holler
Guaranteed, Vinia, a vocalist featured on the track, will impress and excite listeners


As you stand at attention, did I forget to mention?
As you pay close attention, did I forget to state something important?


Mcs will give me twenty if I sense that they act funny
Other MCs will pay me money if I perceive any suspicious or dishonest behavior from them


Lyrics are abundant, right there, I sound redundant
I have an abundance of lyrics, but at times, I may sound repetitive


Just mentioning the fact that the area is fat
Simply stating the undeniable truth that the neighborhood is immensely talented


I dwell in the under, so honey it's no wonder
I live and thrive in the underground hip-hop scene, so it's not surprising


That I get plenty of tail, well I even get white
I attract attention from women, and I even have romantic encounters with Caucasian individuals


I'ma bank-hitting head crack, there, money, take that
I'm a highly successful and impactful artist, so take notice and accept my greatness


Breaking niggas off, cut their bank, then I'm off
Dominating and defeating other artists, impacting their financial success, and then moving on


All my Nikes match my 'Lo hat, beat joint is mad fat
My Nike shoes always coordinate with my Polo hat, and my music is amazingly good


Got the cutter of the box if a kid think he's ox
I possess the skills and ability to eliminate any competitor who believes they're powerful


For tier means creator, the poetry relator
My level represents being a creator and sharing poetic expressions with others


It's hemmed like Betsy Ross, let me tell you who's the boss
It's sewn together skillfully like Betsy Ross, let me clearly state that I'm the boss


Queens got a
Queens possesses


Brooklyn got a
Brooklyn possesses


Bronx got a
The Bronx possesses


Staten Island got a
Staten Island possesses


Long Island got the zone
Long Island has its distinctive style and atmosphere


Jersey got a
New Jersey possesses


Philly got a
Philadelphia possesses


Milwaukee got a
Milwaukee possesses


La got a
Los Angeles possesses


Oaktown got a zone
Oakland has its distinctive style and atmosphere


See I like to get down, Jack
I enjoy getting into the groove and having a good time, buddy


Oh my God (la, la, la)
Expressing astonishment or excitement with background vocalizations


Oh my God (shooby, do, do, do)
Expressing astonishment or excitement with vocalizations


We got the funk doody don shit, clearly, it's the bomb shit
We possess remarkable and incredible funk-style music, it's outstanding


Oh my God (la, la, la, la)
Expressing astonishment or excitement with background vocalizations


Oh my God (shooby, do, do, do)
Expressing astonishment or excitement with vocalizations


Oh my God (la, la, la, la)
Expressing astonishment or excitement with background vocalizations


Oh my God (shooby, do, do, do)
Expressing astonishment or excitement with vocalizations


La, la, la, la, la, la
Vocalizations, possibly representing a catchy and enjoyable melody


La, la, la, la, la, la
Vocalizations, possibly representing a catchy and enjoyable melody


See I like to get down, Jack
I enjoy getting into the groove and having a good time, buddy




Lyrics © Universal Music Publishing Group
Written by: Ali Shaheed Jones-Muhammad, Kamaal Ibn John Fareed, Malik Izaak Taylor

Lyrics Licensed & Provided by LyricFind
To comment on or correct specific content, highlight it

Genre not found
Artist not found
Album not found
Song not found

Tate Buitrago


on Electric Relaxation

another of my dads

More Versions