After listening to Lupe’s new album, Tetsuo & Youth, multiple times, I specifically want to begin this discussion by getting into the album’s last portion which went from the season Winter to Spring. Note that there is a lot of religious content that was referenced in this time period, I will get into all that later
The season started with “Chopper”, and a lot of people are wondering why a song like "Chopper" is on the album. Well, you can't just go into a song like "Deliver" without giving an example of WHY the pizza man won't come to the ghetto. That is why “Chopper" is there, a hood ass trap song with features from rappers that purposefully spit their verses from the perspective of the killers, drug dealers, and gangstaz that live in the trap
Moving onto “Deliver,” like I said, this song shows the results of what went down in “Chopper" and the reasons behind not delivering pizza to the hood. If we look at the main line from the hook, "Pizza man don’t come here no more,” it contains a triple entendre: firstly, the forefront meaning is that the pizza can’t be delivered to such dangerous locations; secondly, the PEACE-of man doesn’t come there no more, this is similar to the first meaning because there is violence preventing the pizza man from delivering the pizza, this all goes back to “Chopper” and how the absence of peace stirs up the controversy; thirdly, the piece-of MAN doesn’t come there no more. Literally, this one ties into the next song, “Madonna (And other mothers of the hood),” because the piece-of MAN not being there, referring to the father figures that are absent while their child grows up. With no father figure, the child will live his life without an example to follow or know what is right from wrong, so chances are he’ll be sucked into the hood activities such as drug dealing and gang affiliations which will eventually lead to the concern of his mother for her child’s well being. With all the information thus far, I think it’s time to start pointing out some religious references. Firstly, Madonna in other words means Virgin Mary, the mother of Jesus who never had a blood related father. Similarly to how Mary feared Jesus’s prosecution, the last thing that the mothers of the hood want are to see their sons die before their very eyes, but at the end of the song, referencing to the movie Boyz In Da Hood, the child lied dead in his mom’s house just like Ricky in the movie, much like how Mary was in attendance at Jesus’s crucifixion
The next song, “The Adoration of the Magi,” contains a significant amount of video game references that foreshadow two things: The Game (a character returning from Lupe’s second album, The Cool), and the next song which he appears in, “T.R.O.N." (A video game that came out in Lupe’s birth year). This song is speaking about a Magi, or a king from old times. In this song, the Magi is played by The Game. For those who don’t know his background, he can be described as someone that controls everything in the evilest of ways, and this song is almost a continuation of the song he appeared in from The Cool, “Put You On Game.” Here are lyrics from that song that show the reference to this song, "I’m sure somebody'll find you tied up in this bag behind the hospital, little baby crack addicts had, then maybe you can grow up to be a stripper.” This song, “Adoration of the Magi” continues the baby theme in the chorus as it uses other artist’s albums with babies on the covers (Carter 3, NWTS, Illmatic, etc.) to symbolize that they they are too young to be on a rap cover, but that is why the Game adores them so much and is interested in the youth. That is why he made a reappearance to this album because the main theme of the whole album is about our youth and that is who he is interested in. Towards the last line of this song, it becomes clear that the baby grew up to be a stripper just like The Game suggested and she is even having her own child too but doesn’t know it, this is why she is wanted by the game, or “adored by the magi.” Religiously speaking, the Adoration of the Magi story has to do with the 3 western kings that lived centuries ago. They followed a star and found the whereabouts of Jesus where they presented him with gifts. This event happened on Jan. 6 which marks the same day Lupe released this song. Now that we have went over the 3 singles for this album (Madonna, Deliver, Adoration of the Magi), it’s about the time we can discuss a vital point that Lupe tweeted, he said, “What if I told you that Madonna Delivered the Adoration of the Magi?” Here’s were things get even crazier. From a religious perspective, "Madonna (Virgin Mary) Delivered the Adoration of The Magi (Jesus)." If we look at it from the ghetto’s perspective, he is saying, “Madonna (and other mothers of the hood) Delivered the Adoration of The Game (strippers, gangstaz, drug dealers, killers).”
Leading into the next song, They.Resurrect.Over.New. will probably have the listener wondering why there are so many video game references, well the answer is simple. If this album is about the Youth (Which Lupe has stated numerous times in many interviews if people were wondering. That’s where we get the title of the album with a little flair with Tetsuo in front of it.), then what other way would be better to portray The Game in front of the youth’s eyes? To a grown man, The Game is the drug game, strip clubs, war zones, etc., but to a baby, The Game is just simply a video game to them. In this song, Lupe said things like “we should be closer” and that is a direct message to the ghetto because his people are killing each other in there. Ab-Soul continues the Game theme by saying, “Trapped in a game where, the trap is The Game, yeah.” And the only way to get passed The Game is to “Proceed to the next level” which is telling the youth to not fall into the hands of The Game and end up as the killers that make up Chi-raq, the strippers that make up the strip clubs, or the drug dealers that make up the drug game. Rather the point of proceeding to the next level is to break away from the shackles, or like Ab-Soul’s last line, “Unloose the Noose.” That is the only way to crush the hood stereotypes. That is about it for the album, but there is still the concept of the seasons that go on throughout the album that seem really random. Lupe described them as palette cleaners to give soothing breaks throughout the album, but it is even more. Notice how in winter, there are no kids on the streets and you get a chilly, eerie feeling from the sounds playing? That was the mood set for Chopper to symbolize that there are no kids on the street during winter, this is why Lupe wants his people to proceed to the next level so that kids can play on the streets again. The album also halts at Spring and there is nothing between that and Summer in the album, it is almost like a sign that it is up for the Youth to decide what goes on in that season. Lupe basically just said, “this is the way.” Now it’s up them. That is about all I can think about in these last 5-7 tracks. If you read this far I hope you have a better understanding of this season’s meaning and message

P.S. This is only a fourth of the album and Lupe’s favorite season on the album is Fall to Winter. I dare someone to decode that season now! :)

Lupe Fiasco

The Chicago born Wasalu Muhammad Jaco first tasted success when he featured on Kanye West’s hit “Touch the Sky”, a track that shortly preceded his real breakout, his 2006 debut album Lupe Fiasco’s Food & Liquor, and he never looked back. He has established himself as one of the greatest urban wordsmiths of all time, with Genius even dubbing him the ‘Proust of Rap’.

While he’s now regarded of one of the 21st Century’s Hip-Hop greats, he wasn’t always a fan of the genre, initially disliking it due to the prominence of vulgarity and misogyny within it. In his late teens, he aspired to make it as a lyricist. In his early twenty’s, he met Jay-Z, who helped him sign with Atlantic Records in 2005. The following year, he released his debut album (Lupe Fiasco’s Food & Liquor), which was met with acclaim from fans and critics alike, as did his sophomore effort, Lupe Fiasco’s The Cool.

The following eight years of his career saw far less output than many would’ve anticipated. This can be partly attributed to his struggles with Atlantic Records. The executives wanted him to sign a 360 deal; however, as he refused to do so they instead shelved his already completed 3rd album, Lasers, and wouldn’t promote him as they had previously. The overseers at the label also interfered with his music (as they had tried to do with his fan-favorite track “Dumb it Down”); subsequently effecting the quality and sound of his third and fourth albums.