THIS WEEK’S column is ICYMI-themed, and dedicated to those of you who have some catching up to do. Ever since Portland rapper Aminé dropped “Caroline” six months ago, the track has continued to gain momentum—it seems like it’s getting played everywhere, and not just local hip-hop shows.
The other day, for instance, I heard it four times outside of my own rotation: once on the Haute Garbage podcast, once on the new station 96.3 FM, and twice while skimming the Snapchat stories of Kehlani and former University of Oregon running back Kenjon Barner. Apparently even Miguel has taken to Snapchat to post a video of himself vibing to the song. But it’s no wonder everybody’s feeling it: the production is perfect—props to both Aminé and producer Pasqué for this one.
“Caroline” clocks in at just three-and-a-half minutes, a perfect pre-funk theme for summer. Lyrically, though, there’s not a whole lot going on here—two identical verses describe his shallow-but-passionate feelings about a “bad thing” named Caroline: “Caroline, listen up, don’t wanna hear/About ya horoscope or what the future holds/Shut up and shut up and/Let’s get gory, like a Tarantino movie/Don’t wanna talk it out, can we fuck it out?” As a single woman living in Portland, I’m not just rolling my eyes at some of these lyrics—I’m taking them with a few grains of salt and a shot of tequila.
About three months ago Aminé released his self-directed music video for the mainstream single, further pushing it towards viral territory. Wearing a Pulp Fiction tee, he sing-raps, “Cause great scenes might be great/But I love your bloopers/And perfect’s for the urgent/Baby I want forever.”
The video appropriately ends with 60 seconds of bloopers as the credits roll, giving prospective fans an even closer glimpse of his style and personality. But for a song that’s all about a super-bomb female, it’s curious that there are zero women in the video—just Aminé and his homies shooting the shit in the Mike’s Drive-In parking lot, eating bananas in the back of a Honda civic. With over nine million views and counting on YouTube, I’m excited to see what Aminé puts on next for our city.