Hip Hop is not dead; we simply listening to hippop
By Shingi Beatz:
“Hip hop is dead” was God's Son or should I say Nas Escobar referring to the greatest art form created by African descendants, apparent and impending demise. Hip Hop is not dead and this article is living proof that the problem is we have moved to hip POP. The question immediately arises what is HIP HOP?
Hip hop is a form of musical expression and artistic culture that originated in African American and Latino communities during the 1970s in New York City, specifically the Bronx according to Wikipedia.com. Hip hop music first emerged with disc jockeys creating rhythmic beats by looping breaks (small portions of songs emphasizing a percussive pattern) on two turntables, more commonly referred to as sampling. This was later accompanied by “rap”, a rhythmic style of chanting or poetry presented in 16 bar measures or time frames, and beat boxing, a vocal technique mainly used to imitate percussive elements of the music and various technical effects of hip hop DJ’s.
What started as a weapon against the authorities to highlight the plight of the black man through social consciousness has been turned into an avenue for continual repression of the African through Niggerisation (the attempt to get blacks to view themselves as less than human). This has lead to the white supremacy inside black people which leads them to demean and devalue themselves in that they see themselves as less beautiful, less intelligent and less moral.
The greatest African art form has now been commercialized and turned into a commodity much like POP music (popular music). Greg Tate In an article for Village Voice, postulated that the commercialization of hip hop is a negative and pervasive phenomenon, writing that “what we call hip-hop is now inseparable from what we call the hip hop industry, in which the nouveau riche and the super-rich employers get richer” So now all that the people see is a superficial lifestyle that leads the black man to seek the “good life”. But is this real? Are we just leading the African further into a new form of slavery or neo colonialism? Has Hip Hop become an illusion of an Oasis?
I wish we could go back to the golden era where the music grew phenomenally and had a meaning. Hip hop’s “golden age” (or “golden era”) is a name given to a period in mainstream hip hop usually cited as between the mid 1980s and the mid 1990s—said to be characterized by its diversity, quality, innovation and influence. There were strong themes of Afro centricity and political militancy, while the music was experimental and the sampling, eclectic. There was often a strong jazz influence. The artists most often associated with the phrase are Public Enemy, Boogie Down Productions, Eric B. & Rakim, De La Soul, A Tribe Called Quest, Gang Starr, Big Daddy Kane and the Jungle Brothers.
So what we get on our entertainment is not Hip Hop; rather an extension of pop music HIPPOP driven by record companies not keen on seeing the growth of the black man. Why is it that all we hear on the radio is champagne, strippers and haters? The sole purpose of the songs seems to be promoting how to cheat or sell crack, it goes as far a describing jail time as credibility on the microphone. What is more shocking is that they glorify pimps and ignorance above the achievements my people have made over time.