With the release of Compton rapper Kendrick Lamar’s fourth studio album, DAMN…Renny Man questions the rap game. The questions being asked are directed more to the complexities/problems of the world and how Kendrick is addressing them (with the black lives movement in the US). Other rappers such as J. Cole and Wale (and the king of it, Kanye) will also bring up the issues which leads us to ask; do (or do we expect) all the rappers to address these issues.
Harlem rapper A$AP Rocky was questioned (judged) by the Breakfast Club for saying “They’re not forcing me to do shit. I’m just gonna stay black and die. Why, because I’m black? So every time something happens because I’m black I gotta stand up? What the fuck am I, Al Sharpton now? I’m A$AP Rocky. I did not sign up to be no political activist. I wanna talk about my motherfuckin’ lean, my best friend dying, the girls that come in and out of my life, the jiggy fashion that I wear, my new inspirations in drugs! I don’t wanna talk about no f–king Ferguson and shit because I don’t live over there! I live in fucking Soho and Beverly Hills. I can’t relate. I’m in the studio; I’m in these fashion studios; I’m in these bitches’ drawers. I’m not doing anything outside of that. That’s my life.”
But is he wrong though. There have been many differing opinions on this topic. And personally, I don’t think he is wrong. I would understand if there was nobody at all addressing the issue and Rocky was our only hope. Then yes, we going to need you rock up Rocky. But that is not the case. We listen to different music when we feeling a different way. If everybody was a conscious rapper we wouldn’t have variety. We wouldn’t have as many feel good songs. Sometimes we use music to get away from our problems and troubles. Sometimes I want to floss and stunt. Why would I want to listen to more problems?
Thank you Kendrick. You are definitely a light in the industry, in this world. Everyone is not Kendrick though, and not everyone wants to listen to conscious rap. Let’s leave the artists to rap about what they want to rap about. They’re artists. Don’t ruin it.