Hip Hop is an amazing form of music in my opinion. I love it but question the fact that our artists are incapable of acquiring the type of longevity that other artists from other genres experience. Why does getting old in hip hop have to be so negative (motherfuckin negative, so you ignorant folks hear me)?” I understand that hip hop is one of the youngest genres of music out, probably being no more than 35 years old. Does that justify emcees/rappers not be able to continue holding it down for fans like Prince, Madonna, The Who, or the Rolling Stones do for theirs? Trust me, I’m aware, we’re referring to a genre of music where the target audience (Kids) is as fickle and influential as they come. The majority are members of a generation where the speed of their home internet connection reflects their demand for output by artists. It’s hard out here for an artist!
Is Hip Hop being young a Justification for the failure of those trying to entertain and represent us? Failure may be the wrong word in this case but I’m sure we can ask Slick Rick, Rakim, and even Ja-Rule about how they feel about their hard, on-top-of-the-game-at-some-point work that is now completely unappreciated. Maybe it boils down to young people have no respect (damn, I’m feeling like my parents). It’s tough being surrounded and effected by fans that are so overly unreceptive yet concerningly susceptible to the constant “force-feeding” of what’s “supposed” to be listened to by these radio stations, and industry puppeteers. I don’t want to turn this into a discussion differentiating what’s good and what’s bad or what should get radio play and what shouldn’t. That’s primarily because I believe all of that should be determined by the people. Hopefully a knowledgeable and savvy group of people though!!!
Let’s be real, Jay Z is the furthest we seen someone go in hip hop. He’s reached the mountain top. This is definitely a testament to his genius, but what details in the blueprint (no pun intended) that he’s designing can be duplicated by those to come. Is it timing? Maybe what Hov is experiencing now is what was to be expected for Biggie or Pac, whom for unfortunate reasons were unable to make it this far. Maybe not! Maybe it was his starting at what is a later age (he was 26 when Reasonable Doubt dropped) in comparison to what may be typical for artist today. Only the hip hop Gods know. All I know is that it’s so difficult defending hip hop sometimes. The genre of music I love the most often times can be so embarrassing and hard to deal with. With as many rappers as we have in America why are there, in my guesstimation, no more than 8-10 relevant artists at any given time. It’s definitely not because of the lack of quality music. It’s because of the business and the audience’s inability to find, or seek out rather, what’s not just played for them.
I’ll sum this up by saying “seek and you shall find.” Hip hop fans, lets mature as listeners, fans, and supporters. Let’s educate ourselves, mature, and grow as a genre and genre supporters. Our music can’t be the bastard step child forever! Don’t allow the age of an artist to deter you from truly finding what reflects you as a person. And definitely, definitely, don’t stop reading this blog!