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Meaning of ‘KNOCKA’ by ‘YG’

Released: 2024

“KNOCKA” by YG is a hard-hitting, street-savvy rap track loaded with a blend of unapologetic indulgence into a luxurious lifestyle, and raw, gritty detailing of a tough upbringing. It’s a lyrical celebration of success, with a nod to his street origins, while also critically addressing the dangers and hardships that come with it.

YG kicks things off with, “This shit is a knocker, a bopper, a knocker, like choppers”. Here, he’s referring to his music as a ‘knocker’ – a hip-hop term for a hit song or a dope track that has deep bass and gets heads bopping in the club like a high-powered subwoofer. ‘Bopper’ often refers to the women attracted to his lifestyle and fame.

When YG refers to ‘the Benjis, the Benzos’, he’s talking about the wealth he’s amassed from his music, referencing Benjamin Franklin, who appears on the hundred-dollar bill, and ‘Benzos,’ shorthand for Mercedes-Benz cars. In the same vein, he also name-drops luxury designer brands like ‘the Gucci, the Louis, the Fendi, the Prada’ as a testament to his financial success and to contrast his life now to his days ‘straight from the bottoms’.

But just as he celebrates, he recognizes the danger and struggle in the same breath. He details the street conflicts, the police (‘coppers’), and the heat (‘block’ll get hotter’) that come with the territory, pointing out the envy and the risk of violence: ‘So they envy , try reachin’ for the watch-a, the Glock’ll go “blakka”, go “blakka”, and “blakka”.’ He’s articulating this dual life – neck-deep in luxury, yet always on the lookout for potential danger.

His verse about ‘I heard bitch around the name, that’s how you know it ain’t about us’ speaks to the negative chatter and ballpark rumours that fly around once you hit fame. And with the ending, ‘4Hunnid ’til they stop us, but who gon’ stop us? Stop us, stop us, who, us? Not us.’, he returns to the assertive, defiant tone, posing a rhetorical question about who can halt his success and answering it himself with a resounding ‘not us.’

To sum up, “KNOCKA” by YG is much more than just a show-off of his success or a glamorizing of his street life. It’s a testament to his tough grind, a critique of the dangers tied to his lifestyle and a bold assertion of his place in the game. It’s a ‘knocka’ in every sense, hitting hard where it matters – the realities of life and the unyielding spirit to overcome them.

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