The Dumb Are Mostly Intrigued By The Drum

In the words of the Wu-Tang lyricist Masta Killa, “The dumb are mostly intrigued by the drum.” A good chunk of the music being streamed over the radio lacks the quality lyrical content Rap was once known for. While Rap veterans such as NaS and Common and new entrants to the game Kanye West and Papoose continue to uphold the original values of Hip Hop being skill, delivery and content, radio waves still remain heavily polluted by overly sexed, gimmick filled tracks. You know Hip Hop has gone astray when BET turns away videos by legendaries A Tribe Called Quest and the up coming Little Brother because their music is “too intelligent.” As a part of BET’s core demographic I find it insulting. From the ground breaking flow of Rakim to the whispers, whistles and snaps of today’s chart hits, Hip Hop has been steadily spirally downward bringing disappointment to true Hip Hop heads and eventual boredom to radio junkies.

So what does this mean for Hip Hop? NaS has declared Hip Hop dead, but has the world’s most influential youth culture really come to a creativity standstill or is Hip Hop on the verge of a monumental grassroots movement? Throughout history we’ve seen that it takes a revolution to truly promote change so with Hip Hop at its death bed, rappers are stepping up and preparing for a resurrection. The established Common, Black Star, NaS, Jay-Z, and Busta Rhymes, among others have publicly spoken on the much needed change in music and with the many mixtape collaborations between mainstream artists and underground lyricists the revolution doesn’t seem too far away. While the Hip Hop leaders serve as the forerunners, new artists are beginning to add to the deft array of talent. With newcomer Lupe Fiasco’s anticipated album Food & Liquor about to drop and record execs sparring over Papoose in an intense bidding war, Rap’s above ground audiences foresee some “conscious” chart topping hits. Add the soon to be released Talib Kweli album, Eardrum and the rumored Common project, Finding Forever, anticipating completion to the mix and the grassroots movement has finally grown legs and is due to make strides throughout Hip Hop culture and music.

Published: Rapaholics

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~ by neorealist on July 2, 2006.

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