Me Myself and I – An Exploration of Self-Identity and Authenticity in Hip-Hop


You can view the lyrics, alternate interprations and sheet music for De La Soul's Me Myself and I at Lyrics.org.
Article Contents:
  1. Music Video
  2. Lyrics
  3. Song Meaning
  4. The Mirror’s Tale: A Reflection on Self-Acceptance
  5. Unveiling the Hidden Meaning: Beyond the Groove Lies the Truth
  6. The Memorable Lines That Echo Through Time
  7. A Critique of Celebrity and the Public Gaze
  8. The Cultural Resonance of ‘Me Myself and I’

Lyrics

(Say it now)

Mirror, mirror on the wall
Tell me, mirror, what is wrong?
Can it be my De La Clothes
Or is it just my De La Soul?
What I do ain’t make-believe
People say I sit and try
But when it comes to being De La
It’s just me myself and I (say it now)

(Ooh-ooh-ooh-ooh-ooh)
It’s just me myself and I
(Ooh-ooh-ooh, oh-oh-oh, oh-oh-oh)
It’s just me myself and I
(Ooh-ooh-ooh, oh-oh-oh, oh-oh-oh)
It’s just me myself and I
(Ooh-ooh-ooh, oh-oh-oh, oh-oh-oh)
(Say it now)

Now you tease my Plug One style
And my Plug One spectacles
You say Plug One and Two are hippies
No, we’re not, that’s pure plug bull
Always pushing that we formed an image
There’s no need to lie
When it comes to being Plug One
It’s just me myself and I (say it now)

(Ooh-ooh-ooh-ooh-ooh)
It’s just me myself and I
(Ooh-ooh-ooh, oh-oh-oh, oh-oh-oh)
It’s just me myself and I
(Ooh-ooh-ooh, oh-oh-oh, oh-oh-oh)
It’s just me myself and I
(Ooh-ooh-ooh, oh-oh-oh, oh-oh-oh)
(Say it now)

Mi-ine, mi-ine
Mi-ine, mi-ine
Mi-ine, mi-ine (say it now)
Mi-ine, mi-ine (say it now)

Proud, I’m proud of what I am
Poems I speak are Plug Two type
Please, oh, please let Plug Two be
Himself, not what you read or write
Right is wrong when hype is written
On the Soul, De La that is
Style is surely our own thing
Not the false disguise of showbiz
De La Soul is from the soul
And this fact I can’t deny
Strictly from the Dan called Stuckie
And from me myself and I

(Ooh-ooh-ooh-ooh-ooh)
It’s just me myself and I
(Ooh-ooh-ooh, oh-oh-oh, oh-oh-oh)
It’s just me myself and I
(Ooh-ooh-ooh, oh-oh-oh, oh-oh-oh)
It’s just me myself and I
(Ooh-ooh-ooh, oh-oh-oh, oh-oh-oh)
(Say it now)

Glory Glory Hallelu
Glory for Plug One and Two
But that glory’s been denied
By condescending dookie eyes
People think they diss my person
By stating I’m darkly packed
I know this, so, I point at Q-Tip
And he states, “Black is Black”
Mirror, mirror on the wall
Shovel chestnuts in my path
Just keep all nuts twistin’ up
So I don’t get an aftermath
But if I do, I’ll calmly punch them
In the 4th day of July
‘Cause they tried to mess with third degree
That’s me myself and I

(Ooh-ooh-ooh-ooh-ooh)
It’s just me myself and I
(Ooh-ooh-ooh, oh-oh-oh, oh-oh-oh)
It’s just me myself and I
(Ooh-ooh-ooh, oh-oh-oh, oh-oh-oh)
It’s just me myself and I
(Ooh-ooh-ooh, oh-oh-oh, oh-oh-oh)
(Say it now)

Mi-ine, mi-ine (oh-oh-oh, oh-oh-oh)
Mi-ine, mi-ine (oh-oh-oh, oh-oh-oh)
Mi-ine, mi-ine (oh-oh-oh, oh-oh-oh)
Mi-ine, mi-ine (oh-oh-oh, oh-oh-oh)
Mi-ine, mi-ine (oh-oh-oh, oh-oh-oh)
Mi-ine, mi-ine (oh-oh-oh, oh-oh-oh)
Mi-ine, mi-ine (oh-oh-oh, oh-oh-oh)
Mi-ine, mi-ine (oh-oh-oh, oh-oh-oh)

Contestant number four, do you have the answers?
Uh, it’s on the top of my tongue, uh
I just can’t think of it, I’m sorry

Full Lyrics

The hip-hop trio De La Soul forever etched their ethos into the culture with their 1989 anthem ‘Me Myself and I.’ Within the song’s groovy basslines and catchy hooks lies a profound commentary on the facets of self-identity, and the strife for authenticity in a world that demands conformity. Their message is delivered with the playful seriousness that could only come from the golden age of hip-hop–a time when the genre was as much about having fun as it was about making a statement.

Diving into the track, every element of this iconic song reveals layers about the paradoxical struggle of staying true to oneself while navigating the pressures of public image and industry expectations. Its upbeat exterior is rife with deeper meanings that still reverberate through the ever-evolving landscape of hip-hop today. Be it the lavish imagery, symbolic mirror conversations, or the unapologetic proclamation of self, ‘Me Myself and I’ stands as a testament to individualism and resilience.

The Mirror’s Tale: A Reflection on Self-Acceptance

At the very opener, ‘Me Myself and I’ stages a scenario with a mirror–an age-old symbol of self-reflection. But instead of showing us a narcissistic gaze, we’re met with confusion and inquiry. The mirror is questioned for its judgement, ‘Tell me, mirror, what is wrong?’ It’s not just a physical reflection De La Soul is after; they’re seeking validation in a world that continuously critiques their ‘De La Clothes’ and ‘De La Soul,’ challenging the worth of their very essence.

The essentials of self and style are laid bare, with De La Soul seeking to justify the nature of their artistry to a society that continuously misunderstands or pigeonholes their identity. The song captures the essence of their struggle and distills it into a universal cry for acceptance, liberating listeners who have felt the sting of similar societal pressures.

Unveiling the Hidden Meaning: Beyond the Groove Lies the Truth

Behind the infectious rhythm, ‘Me Myself and I’ harbors an insurrection against the music industry’s cookie-cutter image machine. The song’s hidden meaning is a rebellion against the ‘pure plug bull’–a metaphor for the false narratives and labels the industry and the public project upon artists. Instead of yielding to such superficiality, the track reverberates with the pride of being Plug One, unaffected by external dictates, rooted in genuineness.

De La Soul subverts the common expectations of hip-hop personas of the day, emphasizing that their ‘Plug Two type’ poems are their sincere expressions, not the ‘false disguise of showbiz.’ As the verses progress, the song becomes an anthem, raising the banner for those who carve their path with ‘Style… surely our own thing.’ It’s a profound message that continues to inspire authenticity in an era where personal branding often blurs the line between reality and performance.

The Memorable Lines That Echo Through Time

Throughout the song, the lyrical genius of De La Soul shines, delivering lines that resonate with their meaning and cleverness. ‘Glory, Glory Halleloo,’ they sing, not only to celebrate their individuality as ‘Plug One and Two’ but also sarcastically to highlight the denied acknowledgment from the mainstream ‘condescending dookie eyes.’ This phrase, nonchalant yet powerful, riffs on the judgment they’ve navigated as dark-skinned artists in a racially biased industry.

Perhaps the most emphatic phrase, the one that has echoed through the decades, is the simple yet defiant refrain, ‘It’s just me myself and I.’ It’s a mantra for independence, a declaration that, despite external judgments or attempts to define them, they remain directors of their own identities. It is the lyrical hook that captures the spirit of the track and secures it as a timeless declaration of autonomy.

A Critique of Celebrity and the Public Gaze

De La Soul invites us to ponder the toxicity of fame and the scrutiny that comes with public existence. ‘People think they diss my person by stating I’m darkly packed,’ the lyrics challenge the discrimination prevalent in not just everyday society but exacerbated by the limelight. Here, they invoke fellow artist Q-Tip to corroborate their sentiments on racial pride, echoing a broader societal issue that spills over into the musical sphere.

The prose flows from personal to collective, speaking to anyone who’s felt the ‘aftermath’ of being different or misunderstood, promising self-defense both metaphorical and literal. In the metaphorical ‘battle’, De La Soul claims the date of ‘the 4th day of July’ to underline their independence story – their revolution against imposed stereotypes and the battle for artistic independence.

The Cultural Resonance of ‘Me Myself and I’

The song transcends the era of its creation to take on a timeless quality, one that informs the DNA of contemporary hip-hop and its enduring conversations about race, identity, and authenticity. It has become a cultural touchstone that represents the plight of many artists who pushed back against the demands to fit into preconceived molds, influencing a generation of musicians who uphold integrity over marketability.

The ethos of ‘Me Myself and I’ can be seen in the autobiographical elements of modern artists, where personal narratives and true stories are becoming increasingly celebrated. As hip-hop continues to evolve, the song remains a beacon that directs listeners to find their unique voice, much like how De La Soul found theirs among the soul-crushing pressures of the limelight and entrenched industry norms.

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