Foxy Brown’s Broken Silence came out in 2001 during a period where the geopolitics of hip hop were ever-shifting. To some, Broken Silence was the NY rap album that spoke directly to a West Indian diaspora, hitting closer to home. Foxy was a rare breed, blending elements of roots music into her repertoire, and the same reference points as any Brooklyn child.
On “Oh Yeah,” the lead single for Broken Silence, Foxy shares the spotlight with her then boyfriend, Dancehall legend Spragga Benz, whose reggae scat was the Barnstorm trick which distinguished this song from all the others on NY radio, that and a familiar sample (Toots and the Maytals). This novel approach to songwriting was later co-opted by Lil Kim during her comeback “tour of duty.”
Around this time in New York rap, the field was roomy enough to accommodate several types of rap comeuppances, including one with cultural underpinnings. “On yeah” reads like a well-aged time relic. Foxy shouts out the ever fashionable Sugar Shane Mosley, who around this time earned himself a split decision victory against the Golden Boy, Oscar De La Hoya. Even Nicki Minaj cites Broken Silence as a record that left a huge impression on her as a youngster.
Coast to coast, stash the gat in holster girl
Dark skinned, Christian Dior poster girl
I'm a rockin Timbs bitch and the Gucci loafers girl
N****s say I'm too pretty to spit rhymes this gritty
Fuck y'all thought? Be dancin around in suits like I'm Diddy
Pretty, show n****s how we run this city
Respect my name, Boogie n****, stay in ya lane
Like The Hurricane, rains on bitches like Sugar Shane