Gangsta's Paradise
Coolio Lyrics


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As I walk through the valley of the shadow of death
I take a look at my life and realize there's nothin' left
'Cause I've been blastin' and laughin' so long
That even my momma thinks that my mind is gone
But I ain't never crossed a man that didn't deserve it
Me be treated like a punk? You know that's unheard of
You better watch how you talkin' and where you walkin'
Or you and your homies might be lined in chalk
I really hate to trip, but I gotta loc
As they croak, I see myself in the pistol smoke
Fool, I'm the kinda G the little homies wanna be like
On my knees in the night, sayin' prayers in the streetlight

They been spending most their lives
Livin' in a gangsta's paradise
They been spending most their lives
Livin' in a gangsta's paradise
We keep spending most our lives
Livin' in a gangsta's paradise
We keep spending most our lives
Livin' in a gangsta's paradise

Look at the situation they got me facin'
I can't live a normal life, I was raised by the state
So I gotta be down with the hood team
Too much television watching, got me chasing dreams
I'm a educated fool with money on my mind
Got my ten in my hand and a gleam in my eye
I'm a loc'd out gangsta, set trippin' banger
And my homies is down, so don't arouse my anger
Fool, death ain't nothin' but a heart beat away
I'm livin' life do or die, what can I say?
I'm twenty-three now but will I live to see twenty-four?
The way things is going, I don't know

Tell me why are we so blind to see
That the ones we hurt are you and me?

They been spending most their lives
Livin' in a gangsta's paradise
They been spending most their lives
Livin' in a gangsta's paradise
We keep spending most our lives
Livin' in a gangsta's paradise
We keep spending most our lives
Livin' in a gangsta's paradise

Power and the money, money and the power
Minute after minute, hour after hour
Everybody's running, but half of them ain't lookin'
It's going on in the kitchen, but I don't know what's cookin'
They say I got to learn, but nobody's here to teach me
If they can't understand it, how can they reach me?
I guess they can't, I guess they won't
I guess they front, that's why I know my life is out of luck, fool

They been spending most their lives
Livin' in a gangsta's paradise
They been spending most their lives
Livin' in a gangsta's paradise
We keep spending most our lives
Livin' in a gangsta's paradise
We keep spending most our lives
Livin' in a gangsta's paradise

Tell me why are we so blind to see
That the ones we hurt are you and me?




Tell me why are we so blind to see
That the ones we hurt are you and me?

Overall Meaning

The lyrics of Coolio's "Gangsta's Paradise" describe the life of a gang member who realizes that he is living in a violent world that has left him with nothing but regrets. He is walking through the "valley of the shadow of death" and is haunted by the violence he has witnessed and participated in. He reflects on his life and realizes that he has nothing left, that his life has been wasted. His mother thinks he's gone crazy because of the constant shooting and laughing that he's doing. Nevertheless, he is determined to make his mark and never let anyone, even if they're innocent, treat him like a punk.


The singer is depicted as someone who has been conditioned by his surroundings, whose life seems to be predetermined. He feels powerless to change his situation and cannot "live a normal life" because he was "raised by the state." He is motivated by money and power, but at the same time, he is trapped by a cycle of violence that he cannot escape from. He is afraid that he won't live to see his next birthday, and he wonders why no one has come to his aid or tried to teach him anything.


The song's central message is that living in a gangster's paradise is a trap, leaving its inhabitants with no way out. People are so consumed by power and money that they do not realize the harm they are inflicting on their communities. The ones they hurt the most are the people they live with, their neighbors, and their families.


Line by Line Meaning

As I walk through the valley of the shadow of death
As I navigate through difficult times in life


I take a look at my life and realize there's nothin' left
I reflect on my life and see that I have nothing


'Cause I've been blastin' and laughin' so long
Because I've been involved in violent and criminal activity for a long time


That even my momma thinks that my mind is gone
My mother believes that I have lost my sanity because of my lifestyle


But I ain't never crossed a man that didn't deserve it
I have only committed crimes against people who I believe deserved it


Me be treated like a punk? You know that's unheard of
I refuse to be disrespected or treated like a coward


You better watch how you talkin' and where you walkin'
Be careful how you speak and where you go in this dangerous environment


Or you and your homies might be lined in chalk
Or you and your friends may end up being murdered and marked with chalk outlines


I really hate to trip, but I gotta loc
I'm reluctant to be paranoid, but I have to be alert and aware of my surroundings


As they croak, I see myself in the pistol smoke
When my enemies die, I can see my reflection in the gun smoke


Fool, I'm the kinda G the little homies wanna be like
I am the type of gangster that young people want to emulate


On my knees in the night, sayin' prayers in the streetlight
I sometimes show vulnerability and pray for guidance in the middle of the street at night


They been spending most their lives
People in this environment have spent much of their lives


Livin' in a gangsta's paradise
Living in a dangerous and difficult neighborhood full of crime and violence


We keep spending most our lives
We continue to dedicate most of our lives


Look at the situation they got me facin'
Look at the difficult circumstances that I am currently experiencing


I can't live a normal life, I was raised by the state
I cannot live a regular life because I was raised in government custody


So I gotta be down with the hood team
So I need to be loyal to my gang


Too much television watching, got me chasing dreams
Watching too much TV has led me to have unrealistic expectations and aspirations


I'm a educated fool with money on my mind
I am an educated individual with a strong desire for money


Got my ten in my hand and a gleam in my eye
I have a ten-dollar bill in my hand and a determined look in my eyes


I'm a loc'd out gangsta, set trippin' banger
I am a fully committed and dangerous gang member


And my homies is down, so don't arouse my anger
My friends are fully committed to this lifestyle and I will not tolerate anyone who disrespects them


Fool, death ain't nothin' but a heart beat away
Death is always a possibility in this environment


I'm livin' life do or die, what can I say?
I am living every day as a struggle for survival


I'm twenty-three now but will I live to see twenty-four?
I am young but worry that I won't live to see my next birthday


The way things is going, I don't know
Given the current circumstances, I am unsure if I will survive


Tell me why are we so blind to see
Explain to me why we are unaware of what is happening around us


That the ones we hurt are you and me?
The people we harm are often those within our community


Power and the money, money and the power
Being in control and possessing wealth go hand in hand


Minute after minute, hour after hour
This persistent cycle of pursuing power and wealth never ends


Everybody's running, but half of them ain't lookin'
Everyone is busy chasing after something, but many are not aware of what they truly want


It's going on in the kitchen, but I don't know what's cookin'
There is something happening that I do not understand


They say I gotta learn, but nobody's here to teach me
People say I need to improve, but no one is willing to show me how


If they can't understand it, how can they reach me?
If they cannot comprehend my situation, how can they provide help or guidance?


I guess they can't, I guess they won't, I guess they front, that's why I know my life is out of luck, fool
I suppose they cannot or will not help me, and that is why I believe that my life is doomed to failure




Lyrics © Universal Music Publishing Group, Sony/ATV Music Publishing LLC, O/B/O DistroKid, Warner Chappell Music, Inc.
Written by: Stevie Wonder, Artis L Ivey Jr., Doug Rasheed, Lawrence Sanders

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

@freddurrz

Most of us probably knew him only because of this song, but let’s still appreciate him for making this piece of art.
R.I.P Coolio






Edit: don’t be rude to each other and don’t start a war in the reply section, please



All comments from YouTube:

@LelandJones-ft4kv

Anyone here in 2024

Edit:
Omg I can’t believe it has this many likes

Edit:
How so many likes

@Thunder12277

Yeah

@user-gj8bu3nb1z

Yup

@williammartin4132

Every day ❤️❤️😢😢

@user-yx1fq7wf5i

Я тут

@UrLocalFrogQueen

Yep!

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@odurs

Its February 2024, let's see how many legends are listening to this incredible song💜

@lorisshyti9832

Me

@samoribic2817

me from 🇧🇦

@user-hq2mf6do2q

Hello

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