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  • Writer's pictureEmma Norton

I'll Be There for You/You're All I Need to Get By - Method Man & Mary J. Blige

Swoon. It's the gruff sincerity of Method Man meets the angelic range of Mary J. Blige. I love this song. I have for a very long time. It goes to that raw place of love that lacks a fabrication from ego.

The song released in 1995 was the remix to the original and sampled "All I Need" by Marvin Gaye & Tammi Terrell. There is a little hint of Biggie you can hear on the chorus, as the track was co-produced by Diddy, RZA, and the Trackmasters.

As I continue to move away from any illusionary notions on love, I circle back to songs like this. My heart feels empowered with this song, and it's that bond between masculine and feminine that is, well, real. There is a sincerity in the lyrics matched with a sense of realism, which isn't always present in other music.

It's funny with anything you knew at a younger age, to go back to it at a different point in life and think "ooh that language" or "did that slip into my psyche?" In this case, I can say yes to both, but it's this ride or die vibe I have always looked for in connectivity. Based on my musical consumption over time, it's not that bad of an influence to have. It's noble in a way and truthful beyond measure. The lyrics of this song, it is about loyalty and respect, compromise, and building people up.

I chose All I Need today because it is 9/11. It is a very New York song, with the artists and the gritty underside to both the beat and the lyrics that make it ideal as a Memoriam. It is that tough, standing strong and united energy that I remember from 9/11 and how the city banded together. We can choose to reflect on the tragedy or we can choose to focus on the unity that was created as a result and honor all of the lives lost in that manner. The love and support that unfolded, as a result, was beautiful. We can remember in those times, what it takes to rise out of such situations and face the fears on a small or large scale.

Years later, Method Man appeared on Mary J. Blige's album Love & Life released in 2003. "Love at First Sight" hit my eardrums in my teen years and it was my exploration back into Mary J. Blige's repertoire, where I indulged in her slice of the rich musical history with the energy of New York. The song itself was almost like a prequel to their first collaboration, with the lyrics insinuating a more lighthearted approach with deeper soulful undertones. Pairing the songs together emphasizes a well-roundedness to the concept of "Real Love" (another song of hers) and the growth we all endure that is beautiful.

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