A fan tweeted, “Tweet said masturbation but make it a bop,” insinuating the song was about self-pleasure, and Missy chimed in to clarify. Missy says that the song was never intended to be about masturbation, but that their intentions were to celebrate her dark skin. She says that listeners ran with the idea that it was about sex and pleasure while her and Tweet allowed consumers minds to create what they wanted.
Who knew the Timbaland-produced single was about self-love and not self-pleasure? The song released in 2002 became one of Tweet’s most notable songs in her discography, and fans had no idea what the real meaning was until today. At a time when “black girl magic” wasn’t a cool phrase to say and fair skinned Black women were represented in media far more than dark skinned Black women, it is a joy to know the true essence of one of Tweet and Missy Elliott’s greatest hits. We can imagine the song may have been even more impactful during that time had the two artists chosen to clarify its’ meaning sooner.
Tweet sings, “in a trance from this body. So buttery brown and tantalizing.”
Revisiting the lyrics in the song, listeners can identify the theme of self-love. Tweet sings about being in a trance from her own body. In the way that she describes her brown skin, she sings about being captivated by herself so much that she had to catch her breath. Imagine being that in love with yourself, that you lost track of your breathing for a moment. That’s the utmost self-love and we love to see that for Black women.
This was quite the Tuesday morning surprise. Leave it to Missy Elliott to educate us on her historic musical involvements over the years. We thank you time and time again for your contributions to music and pop culture. It also makes us wonder what other songs we have misinterpreted in the past.