“One verse equals a 1,000 of a my speeches” Minister Louis Farrakhan
As I sat down one night last week from a longs day work. I decided to actually take time to see whats going on within the hip hop and R&B scene. Keep in mind I dont watch much MTV or BET nowadays so I actually wanted to check 106 and da Park to see whats really hot in the streets and what artists are doing their thing right now.
After stomaching from 40 minutes of buffoonery from Terrance and Rosci as they were showing love to every garbage rapper or video being played. Ive come to the realization that Hip Hop has officially LOST his pro blackness. Every video from Rick Ross’s Aston’s Music, Wiz Khalifa’s Black and Yellow, Soulja Boy’s Speakers Go Hammer, Diddy’s latest fluff, and many others were representations of whats hot at the moment and they were all identical and more to the same.
The Powers to Be have done their job: They have watered down Hip Hop to the point where it’s no longer the voice of the suppressed. a representative of the struggle and as Chuck D would say “The CNN for the Black Community” Hip Hop has takened a dangerous turn for the worst as every buffoon or simp had songs talking about the same subject manner(Money, Cars, Clothes, Hoes,) along with the same repetitive beats(Lex Luger), R&B singers for hooks(Trey Songz, Akon).It was nothing but McDonalds meals with NO Vegetables.
Hip Hop today is no longer a threat and watered down to the point where its cool for noverity acts such Lil B to come into the game and make a mockery of it. What happened to songs such as Public Enemy’s Burn Hollywood Burn? Ice Cube’s I Wanna Kill Sam? Ice T’s Cop Killer or Tupac’s Brenda got a baby which talked about struggling single moms living or surviving in poverty?
Even though Tupac was on Death Row, Which was reocnized for “Gangsta Rap” He still was considered a threat to the establishment that embodies suppression, greed, murder, captivity, and corruption among the government. Even though there was a monumental shift from the brothers rapping about pro blackness, wearing african medallions, and featuring the NOI on their albums to the Gangsta Rap era, It was still frightening to White America and alot of these Gangsta Rappers were also going against the system.
When Tupac got killed, So did the need to be pro black and revolutionary. Tupac even with his “Westside Riding” on Death Row never left his pro black roots and still spoke for the struggle. Songs such as Letter 2 the President, White Manz World, Baby Dont Cry, The Good Die Young, and Black Jesus were all recorded during his Death Row days and he found ways to touch different audiences without selling out.
After Pac and Biggie’s deaths.. Puffy emerged in 1997 to become to King of Hip Hop. He ushered the Jiggy era which to this day Hip Hop hasn’t recovered from, Life all of a sudden became one big party, glorification of the hollywood life along with your favorite rappers embracing pop collaberations and rapping along side pop stars and hanging with white celebrities that could care less about hip hop started becoming apart of the norm which is what we’re seeing today. Hip Hop has officially put money over value and results is that its lost its direction.
Why Hip Hop needs to revisit its “Pro Black” Roots? Heres why
And I’m not talking about that forced DJ Khalid nonsense either. Notice how unified it was in the 80s when you had BDP, Rakim and Eric B, Kool G Rap, Ice T, NWA, Brand Nubian, De La Soul, Public Enemy, Big Daddy Kane and many others were. This is why it was labeled as the golden era. Even in the 90’s when Gangsta rap was in its peak, Their were still unity in a sense where Pac was trying to create the One Nation album and go against the common enemy. Unity is more of a threat.
The bottom line is today’s youth is lost. There are no strong male figures to look up too in today’s society, Everyone is on some pro capitalism, sell my soul for money and fame. Most of the rappers today are not good representatives for the youth because their more concern with being on Forbes and not bucking against the regime.
But the sad part about it is the problems from the 90s have escalated. Even more so than the 890s Poverty has hit the billions mark, Unemployment has risen over the decade, crime and gang violence have risen, Homosexuality is being pushed as a norm in the forefront and the division between black men and women is growing even stronger.
Since hip hop today is full of soulless cookie cutter artists that are putting out anything to make a quick buck, We can only hope that somebody can rise from the ashes of mediocrity in 2010 and not be afraid of bringing these issues to the table and not sell out.
When groups such as NWA, Public Enemy and BDP were coming out, We got education and game from all aspects. NWA was expressing the harsh street life of Compton and how police brutality were effecting the black community(Fuck Tha Police), Public Enemy brought the pro black militant mindset to the forefront with Fight the Power and KRS One to this day is continuing to drop knowledge on record and remains as one of the greatest to ever do it.
Being that kids today prefer to listen to rappers for guidance and knowledge instead of reading books and listening to their parents. The music is a key tool to reaching ears and somebody has to come through and break the mold thats hurting the game right now.
There are artists today that are still trying to do it, Artists like Nas Lupe Fiasco, Dead Prez, Immortal Technique, Styles P, Saigon and others that are trying to bring these issues to the forefront but they still don’t have the backing corporate or the support in a forever fickle market to do so.
4. It brings respect for Black Women and Men
Both Men and Women play a key role in the division within hip hop and the disrespect that bridges the gap between both sexes. Males for getting paid and rich off disrespecting women without having any form of remorse for the damage done and the Women for actually being hypocritical in a lot of their stances. They are a key element in supporting a lot of these guys or dancing to these guys records.
5.Its a threat to the system structure.
One of the main reasons why the game is so stagnant is that the rappers coming in don’t want to cause no problems. They don’t want to be a voice or have a backbone to fight against a system thats forever suppressing them.
This is not a knock to all the emcees because they sometimes have to do what they have to do to get paid in what forever is described a very wishy-washy industry. The main responsiblity is put on labels and in many times rappers who moved from rapper to CEO and don’t want to put these young and hungry revolutionary rappers on out of fear of not breaking bread with the old white men who writes their checks(Puff, Jay)
Theres still music being put out but it’s not powerful enough to move people. The gimmicks, materialism, cookie cutter material is about ran its course and its showing in everybody’s record sales today. People are demanding for something real, someone who can write about their pain and relate to their struggle. Its time for hip hop in 2011 to step up to the plate and leave the nonsense of last year behind because I don’t see it getting any better.
There is nothing wrong with party records, I enjoy them and feel they are needed to keep that balance. The main problem is the Industrys need to cater and create those who are more of the same and not bringing new concepts, creativity, or ideas to the table. Heres some dope records that have come out that definitely touched on that pro blackness thats lacking nowadays: