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Song Stories

“Verses From the Abstract”

A Tribe Called Quest | 1991

Although there are bass samples all over The Low End Theory, thus giving the album its name, jazz legend Ron Carter plays upright acoustic bass live on this track. "He was a great guy — We definitely had a good conversation," Q-Tip said. "He was definitely interested in what we were doing with hip-hop, or I don’t think he would have done the track for us." Despite the title of the song, this is one of Q-Tip’s less abstract raps, with vocalist Vinia Mojica also lending a hand on the track. 

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Song Stories

“Promiscuous”

Nelly Furtado with Timbaland | 2006

This club-oriented single featuring Timbaland, who produced Nelly Furtado's third album, Loose, was Furtado’s sexy return after the Canadian singer's exploration of her Portuguese heritage on Folklore. "In the studio, initially I didn’t know if I could do it, 'cause Timbaland wrote that chorus," Furtado said. "I'm like, 'That's cool, but I don't know if I'm ready to do full-out club.'" The flirty lyrics are a dance between a guy and girl, each knowing they will end up in bed together but still playing the game. "Tim and I called it 'The BlackBerry Song,' she said, "because everything we say in the song you could text-message to somebody."

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