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Rap Haters Love Hip-hop


Rap Haters Love Hip-hop

Rap Haters Love Hip-Hop

By Dahlia Urns

MTV is runnin’ this rap shit, Viacom is runnin’ this rap shit, AOL and Time Warner runnin’ this rap shit

-Mos Def The Rape Over

Hip-hop began its journey as a by-product of struggle answering the call for some revival of awareness within the African American community. Birthed out of the ghetto basements of young Black America its roots embedded in spoken word, poetry, and jazz, hip-hop whispered the truth and screamed its ability to evolve and ultimately last.

Though Hip-Hop originated as a music genre of the people for the people, rap, its counterpart has proven to be a worthy adversary. The industry creation manipulated by executives in boardrooms and dictated by some monetary bottom line has flipped both the Hip Hop community and suburban America on its head. With its far reaching influence and cleverly packaged appeal, rap has made itself very much at home in living rooms the world over. Rap artists with about as much street credibility as Justin Timberlake overcompensate with bullet wounds and well inked physiques. Impressionable generation next-ers follow the trend without question and mimic their platinum sporting idols. Lyrics account for very little when image is everything.

Hip-hop, it would appear, stands in the shadow of the rap machine. In the wake of such a dramatic shift in hip-hop culture, most artists have succumbed to a “bling” ideology, taking what was meant to be lyrical graffiti and disguising it as pop art discarding its original truth for soundbites, samples, and convenient lies.

In the last decade artists such as Nas, Outkast, Cipher, Rakim, and Mos Def, among others have tried to maintain the roots and integrity of the genre. Anthems like One Mic (Nas), Sunshine (Mos Def), The Saga Begins (Rakim), Streets Keep Calling Me (Cipher), and Elevators (Outkast) echo the urban griots of early Hip Hop while allowing the art to evolve.

Hip-hop heads don’t drink the water…mainstream rap threatens to contaminate what is left of true Hip Hop. Over-exposure and “force-feed” marketing strategies limit the longevity of most rap artists while giving the music industry the highest and fastest return on its investment. In an attempt to boost sales labels bribe radio programming directors to spin specific artists at regular intervals. Meanwhile, other artists are resigned to an underground following and little if any radio play. These artists, however, should not lay down their mics and step down from their soapboxes because fantasy can’t stop what’s real. The underground is moving above ground because Rap-haters love Hip-Hop

Dahila Urns has been a music fan since conception!!!

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