Eddie Murphy and Snoop Lion Hit the 'Red Light'

by Alicia Lutes

Remember the 80s? No/probably not/definitely not but weirdly nostalgic for it anyway? Then you'll probably remember the seminal 1985 hit, "Party All The Time" by consummate performer Eddie Murphy. It was the tuuune, y'all, rocketing up to number 2 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart, and number 36 on the 100 Worst Songs Ever list. Truly, it was a song that everyone could agree on was... a song. And if nothing else, it pretty much sums up the idea of the 80s to a T. In 2013, Eddie Murphy's trying his hand at summing up the teen years of the new millennium, and it seems as though we are stopped, as a nation, at a "Red Light." Oy.

Murphy, most notably known as the voice of America's Most Favorite Donkey, has never been the sort of man who wanted to be pegged down. He enjoys variety: like dressing up in fat and/or lady suits for cheap laughs, playing into stereotypes, yelling jokes at people from a stage, laughing a lot, picking up transvestite hookers in West Hollywood, getting Scary Spice pregnant and then denying it, and yes, sometimes even singing a sweet little tune! Very accomplished, that Murphy. But like so much of life, careers and interests can be cyclical. So really, it's no surprise that Eddie has decided to return to music. Oh, at long last! Enter: "Red Light," his nearly-just released new reggae single with Snoop Lion. I know, I know.

Perhaps his greatest contribution to the entertainment industry was that classic tune. A funky fresh and ridiculously silly tune, it still remains a hilarious earworm that I dare you to listen to and not have stuck in your head for at least the majority of the rest of your day.

I mean: COME ON. There's even RICK JAMES, bitch!

Thankfully, Murphy eventually realized just how impactful this moment was in musical history. The problem, though, is that eternal truth: lightning that ferosh rarely strikes twice. Especially when you replace the brilliance of Rick James with the newly-reggaefied Lion of a Snoop variety. And here's the other thing: a party-jammer this tune is not. But don't just take my random opinion on the Internet as truth — listen to it yourself:

I don't even really know what to say. I just. Ugh. What really can be said about a plodding tune with a, uh, "message"? At least, I'm imagining that's what this mess of thoughts about stopping, taking it slow and easy, and dead people is truly all about. Surely in there, somewhere, is a coherent idea about something that means, well, something. Just take a look at the lyrics:

(Gone) Emancipation(Gone) Race relation(Gone) Most of the rebels are gone(Gone) The trust in nation(Gone) The time we’re wastin’(Gone) The people’s patience is gone


(Gone) Marcus Garvey, Montgomery, Martin(Gone) All the rebels are gone(Gone) We’ve lost our way(Gone) Darkness is the day(Gone) Most of the rebels are goneRedlightRedlightRedlight

Yeah. See? This is a hard game to play. And also thanks for the bum out, Eddie! Jeez. So instead of perma-partying, we get to hum along to the fact that everyone's dead, we're lost in the dark, everything sucks, and the only answer is to just stop at a red light and smoke a blunt or just, uh, walk? Which, sure, OK — that's certainly one way to handle one's problems. But a red light — as you oh so astutely observed, Eddie dear — signifies stopping. Which is the opposite of walking (a.k.a. going, using on your feet).

So what you're saying is the answer to all of life's problems involves decriminalizing jaywalking?

I just don't understand you, "Red Light." And I don't understand what the point of this whole charade is, Eddie, outside of, perhaps, boredom and an excuse to hang out with Snoop Lion and score some of his killer weed.