City Desk

Now There’s a Rap Song About Rockville

First, there was "Arlington: The Rap." Now the Maryland suburbs are getting in on the action, too.

A video tribute to Rockville (where, in the spirit of full disclosure, I'll note that I grew up) appeared on YouTube this week, full of shots of iconic local businesses—Womack Pest Control, Quartermaine Coffee Roasters, Second Story Books—and lyrics calling out things that matter to Maryland's third-largest city, like, well, high SAT scores. The man behind it, who asked to be identified only as "Rockville Slim," which is how he's credited on YouTube, tells Washington City Paper it's meant as a somewhat belated response to the Arlington song.

"Mine is in direct relation to the 'Arlington Rap,' which is great, but the genre benefits from battles," he says. "It’s not exactly East Coast vs. West Coast, but it’s MD vs. VA, it’s Red Line vs. Orange Line."

It's also an even more belated response to R.E.M.'s 1984 single "(Don't Go Back to) Rockville." (Yes: That song is 30 years old this year. Yes: You're old.)

"I grew up in Rockville and wanted an anthem of our own," says the song's creator. "Instead, we got '(Don’t Go Back) To Rockville' by R.E.M, which is a total emo, misrepresentative country twang, breakup drag of a song. And as kids, we had to live with that! 'Where you from?' 'Rockville, Maryland.' "Dude, I *love* R.E.M.'"

Which other DMV-area municipalities will get their own rap hymns? Leave your suggestions in the comments.

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  • Ethan

    Now, I love rockville. I grew up in rockville. But here's the thing:

    First of all, that Arlington rap video came out many years ago. Maybe this video should have included the line "We're slow to respond to internet trends". And while the Arlington video was actually funny, poking a lot of fun at the wealth and style of the county (and all of its starbucks), the Rockville video looks more like an attempt at a guerrilla marketing campaign from the Rockville economic development office.

    That being said, Rockville is the best and will never be outdone by any other suburban locality, especially not one in *gasp* Virginia

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