Joe Budden SOME LOVE LOST
Written by Delmar Napue
The third album in the “Love Lost” series is a series in which we see Joe dissect a bevy of issues taking place in his life. Issues like strained relationships, depression, drug use etc. These topics and more all overlap throughout the series but the album I feel most connected to is the “Some Love Lost” album, the second of the series. This album touches me so much because like him, and many others, I’m someone who’s had bouts with depression. Listening to this album is like having someone project and convey all the right tones and words to describe what I’m to scared to talk about, everything from self doubt, puzzling interactions, and conflicting thoughts you have when you’re under that dark cloud. Feelings that only a lyricist like Joe could describe are unraveled and analyzed through his clear but hazed eyes.
The album opens up with a short and relaxed but theatrical instrumental that sends me on a path of envisioning waves rustling in the ocean as the intro plays. The tone symbolizes a beautiful struggle of thought, a tossing and turning of sorts, that acts as building blocks to the entre of the project. Every song on this album is unique and meaningful in their own right, but the following six songs on this album all sound the same to me in a good way. They all tell a story within a story, a tale of struggle and yearning. Yearning for a healthy, loving, and stable relationship. Songs like “The Way You Love Me”, “OLS4”, and “Different Love”. Dysfunction runs through these 3 songs like blood through veins.
Being in a relationship while being depressed is a very slippery slope to walk on. You never know if you truly love a person or if you love them because they love you and that’s a feeling you think you need. After awhile, a compliment or good morning text isn’t just that anymore, there now means for you to hear the sentiment reciprocated. Often times, that person your with while depressed morphs from a love interest and partner into your training wheels. On “Different Love” Joe says “But if she was getting you high then she would get you low too”. That speaks to being so dependent on a person that you ultimately give them the power to make or break you. You don’t have self love so you put all of yourself into a basket that isn’t and never was guaranteed to sustain everything you put into it.
Companionship, acceptance, and healing are all things you can hear that Joe is craving on the tracks “Only Human”, “Alive”, and “Poker In The Sky”. While the whole album is ultra introspective these songs feel more contained to himself and his thought process than the others. On the song “Only Human” Joe echoes a very real back and forth I’ve had with myself when he says “I need a vacay, a change of scenery. But mama said wherever I’ma go, I’m taking me with me.” I’ve struggled with the idea of this so many times. Thinking that maybe the way you feel and the problems you’re facing would all be fixed with a quick move but then being faced with the reality that this simply isn’t the case. So often in life I’ve felt trapped, trapped by geography, but more importantly mentality. Once you finally understand that you will always be you no matter what, that there is no way to escape yourself and your demons, that the baggage you’re trying so hard to ignore will still find ways to manifest in your everyday life you’ll be able to accept and heal like Joe has.
November of 2014 this album was released, fast forward almost 4 years and Joe is now engaged, with a newborn. His former show “Everyday Struggle” dominated Hip Hop headlines for most of 2017, his podcast “The Joe Budden Podcast” is on fire and number 1 on charts weekly. So much has changed in Joe’s life for the better, I’m sure the Joe Budden who made this album wouldn’t recognize the Joe Budden we see before us today. To go from talking to his pastor with a loaded gun on his lap alone, to watching his fiancé dance with his newborn to vintage R&B in the morning is what life’s about, progression.