JME and the 2015 PokéRap

“Everybody thinks to MC tough / your lyrics must be about negative stuff” – JME


I love hip-hop. It’s a genre with colourful characters who cover a number of hilarious topics. The subject matter is what keeps me coming back. Whenever a new rapper emerges on the scene; they often feel obligated to answer certain character questions about themselves.

Almost always, these questions are:

It’s rare to find a rapper who goes against type. JME is one such artist, the Tottenham-based MC/producer, largely shies away from the Money, Cash, Hoes side of hip hop. He prefers to discuss the more important things in life, like Pokémon cards.

JME Charizard
Man don’t care

According to the virgins over at Bulbapedia, in 2016 there are 721 different Pokémon, from seven generations of video games. To illustrate the vastness of the universe these days, here’s someone rapping all 721 in nine minutes. Kudos if you can make it to the end.

Just for fun here’s what the starter Pokémon look like on the latest games, Pokémon X and Y.

Pokémon X and Y starter pokemon
I understand how my parents feel when they looked at my Pokémon

You might think that hip-hop and Pocket Monsters don’t mix, but you would be wrong. Rap Genius lets you measure the frequency certain words appear in rap songs over time.

pokemon rap stats - rap genius

As you can see, Pokémon references in rap are at an all-time high. Of all words used in 2016 hip-hop, 0.00036% of these are “Pokemon”. Of course this pales in comparison to more familiar words in the rap lexicon.

rap stats - weed - rap genius
Barely a dot

This is where JME comes in, he is one of few established rappers who has dedicated an entire song to Pokémon.

Here’s a breakdown of typical JME topics.

JME Subject Matter Graph

This is what makes JME a lovable and interesting musician, he’s a gigantic nerd who raps about video games. He is also the first person I’ve ever heard put the word “pescatarian” into a song.

But I roll with couple pescetarians, Vegans and vegetarians<br> An’ a few rastafarians<br> Man don’t wanna see no dead meat on their plate like some barbarians
― Jme – No You Ain’t

This isn’t news, JME has been a big name on the UK Hip-Hop scene for over ten years. He got started when he co-founded the independent label Boy Better Know with his brother, Skepta. Unlike Skepta, JME chose to remain largely underground and has never flirted with the mainstream, aside from a few features.

Integrity alert.

JME integrity album cover
JME’s latest album cover is a picture of his cheery mug

JME fucking loves Pokémon. Here are his framed Charizards Pokémon Cards, he got them by trading a gold vinyl version of his latest album.

JME Charizard Pokemon cards
“these will go up on the wall of the studio and help me spit flames on the tracks.” – JME [2015]
I am of course, using mockery to cover my burning jealousy.

Smiling ear to ear, revving hard<br> Like he’s just got a Dark Charizard
― Jme – Game

The pinnacle of this Pokémon Stannery was his 2015 song “The Very Best”. A two minute love letter to Pocket Monsters with a beat, heavily sampling the classic first season theme tune.

Quick aside, I recently learned there is a three minute version of the original featuring the fabled second verse and a excellent J-Rock guitar solo. There’s so much cheese I went into a lactose induced coma.

Too bad JME can’t listen to it, because he’s vegan and shit.

Listen to those dramatic vocals about destiny. It almost brings a tear to the eye. It’s so damn inspiring.

Back to JME’s PokéRap, let the first line set the tone. A line so good he felt the need to tweet it to the world.

Officially, the least impressive boast in hip-hop since Canibus said:


“The Very Best” is a pretty good song with a great sample loop and JME has some interesting things to say. It is more than just a list of Pokemon references.

You got Mew - JME - The Very Best

I’ve never heard Mewtwo being referenced in such a threatening manner before.

Rare Candy - JME - The Very Best

That’s why we love JME, he’s a humble dude who enjoys the simple things in life. He likes rapping and playing Xbox. He stays in his lane and writes songs about Pokémon.

jme twitter bio

It’s only right we close things out with the original PokéRap. JME is good, but you can’t beat someone rhyming all 151 pocket monsters in one catchy song.

Other hip-hop posts:

 Iggy Azalea – The New Classic Review

Host of Culture Hash, writer of music, TV and film opinions

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