To consider R. Kelly as just “your favorite rapper’s favorite singer” is to do him a grave injustice. From Space Jam to Sparkle, Mr Kelly has been responsible for an incredible volume of professional output. As with many of the great individuals in history, Mr Kelly can be considered a true polymath: singer, songwriter, multi-instrumentalist, record producer, actor, lover, director, playwright, and last but not least … mathematician.
Consider the lyrics to the 2007 remix of Fat Joe’s “Make it Rain”:
Don’t ask me what my name is, stupid bitch I’m famous
You see I order one bottle, then I f*ck with one model
Then I order more bottles, now I got more models
A subpar rapper might be content spitting a lyric such as “I ordered some bottles and I got with some models”. Lyrical quality notwithstanding, this gives the listener little to no information regarding how bottles might be functionally related to models. Do models come with bottles? Do bottles come with models? What function best describes the relationship between bottles and models? What quality and quantity of bottles do I need acquire in order to receive models?
Mr Kelly was obviously not content to simply imply that he does in fact possess both bottles and models, and instead took it a step further and implies a specific relationship between bottles and models. The lyric “You see I ordered one bottle and then I f*ck with one model” provides a wealth of knowledge regarding the reality in which Mr Kelly resides. He appears to imply that models are functionally related to bottles, and even provides a coordinate pair from which to work from.
With the next line, “Then I order more bottles, now I got more models”, Mr Kelly gives us the final piece of the puzzle.
There you have it. The function relating bottles to the resultant models has a floor of 2 models for all values of 2 bottles and higher. Is having 10 bottles better than 5? Mr Kelly doesn’t seem to provide this information in “Make it rain”, but if Trapped in the Closet can be any indication he will continue to provide clues throughout his future releases. The final question of the day comes from the above lyrics, and posits whether we can even equate the phrases “f*ck with one model” and “got more models”. Are “f*ck with” and “got” mathematically equivalent?
As far as Mr Kelly is concerned, I’d like to think they are.