“Cloned Rappers” by Tom MacDonald
Whether or not one decides to take Tom MacDonald’s “Cloned Rappers” literally is ultimately up to the listener. For the most part, we will say that the subject matters of Tom’s tracks tend to be pretty serious, especially relative to other popular hip-hoppers. And as far as “Cloned Rappers” goes, even if what he’s saying isn’t literal, reading in between the lines the ideas which McDonald is putting forth are still pretty weighty nonetheless.
Literal Focus of “Cloned Rappers”
In terms of the literal focus, what McDonald is saying is that certain rappers have been cloned. What that fundamentally means is that the original has died, being replaced by a body double. And rappers he lists to have undergone this procedure are:
- “Gucci” Mane
- “Kodak” Black
- “Eminem since Encore”
Em’s “Encore” is an album which Slim Shady dropped in 2004. This is approximately 15 years before “Cloned Rappers” came out.
And to note such conspiracy theories aren’t anything completely new. For example, people have actually argued that Paul McCartney of the iconic Beatles passed away way back in 1966.
But it’s almost as if this entire piece has another meaning underneath its surface wording. For instance, Tom uses the opportunity of the aforementioned assertion to also allude to the notion that Eminem is not as lyrically potent as he used to be. So in other words, it’s almost as if he’s dissing Slim Shady. And fundamentally he’s saying the same about all of the “cloned rappers”.
However overall, it’s not so much a critique of their lyrical skill. Rather McDonald is saying something like current rap artists were manufactured in laboratories. And that is yet another way of saying that they lack genuine originality. For instance, according to the first verse, such individuals have made deals with “devils” via their label contracts.
And in fact upon signing on the dotted line, their “music… image.. name and… person” are all owned by said companies. So it’s like they’re products as opposed to actual individuals. And it is not totally uncommon to hear mainstream rappers being criticized by those who are independent in such a manner – as being tools of corporate America, if you will. But it’s rare to come across someone of Tom McDonald’s influence making such a claim.
Meanwhile as far as the whole cloning motif goes, it’s clear that this is a technology whose potential misuse concerns the narrator in general. And yes, it can be argued that he truly believes that some rappers have been cloned. In fact concerning the Eminem clone theory, there are apparently others who subscribe to the same notion also, even before this song came out.
And the reason such individuals are being cloned, according to McDonald, on top of the fact of dying prematurely, is because they have a strong influence on the masses. Or put differently it is the likes of Gucci, Kodak and Shady that “the Illuminati” are using to implant select messages into “the youth”.
But of course Tom McDonald is a pretty famous rapper himself. Yet as he sees it, he is irreplicable because no one can actually control him. He’s not “a slave” to “the system” as some other artists are. Physically there can be another Tom McDonald, with the same tattoos and what have you. But in terms of what he’s spitting, no clone could replicate his rebellious nature.
So it’s almost as if the rapper is saying that the Illuminati wouldn’t have any need to clone him considering that he never played their game in the first place.
So yes, by implication McDonald is saying that other rappers unlike himself are fundamentally human robots. Or he does in fact use the chorus of a song that’s supposed to be about cloning and compliancy as a moment to rather exalt himself. But at the end of the day, one thing is clear. Even if you cast aside the whole cloning motif as being a fictional device, ultimately what Tom is putting forth is quite powerful.
He is asserting that the music industry proper is run by the Illuminati, i.e. a devil-worshipping secret society. Furthermore, he is claiming that popular rappers are their willing minions in the name of personally achieving “money and fame”. Indeed all lyrics considered, it is that point that comes across more so than any other.
So conclusively, we will say that this track is pretty concise in terms of sticking to a specific conspiratorial theme. And that conspiracy, whether rappers are being cloned or not, is that they are being used to push the Illuminati agenda.
Flowers for the Dead
“Cloned Rappers” was the only single to come out from a mixtape Tom McDonald dropped entitled “Flowers for the Dead”.
This conspiracy theory-themed track was written and produced by Tom McDonald. Also it was presumably self-released, though it was uploaded onto Soundcloud by an entity called 666 Records.
Does Tom really believe Em is cloned?
We have to conclude, considering that Tom purchased a package from Eminem for $100k in early 2021, that he doesn’t actually believe Slim Shady was cloned or if he did, no longer does. Said package included an instrumental with Eminem himself produced that McDonald later used on one of his own songs.
And it is the type of roundabout disses he’s made against Slim Shady in the past, like the one featured on this song, which made some fans upset that Tom purchased and used his instrumental in the first place. (And to note he used it on a song, “Dear Slim“, in which he for the most part praised Eminem throughout.)