Unfortunately, as spontaneous a person as I like to think I am, my Internet surfing habits are as monotonous as Bill Murray's existence in the film "Groundhog Day". I log on, check my email, check myspace messages, then the next few minutes I go through an internal battle akin to an unemployed recovering alcoholic being offered a high paying gig driving a beer truck. Despite the fact that I have a lot of writing to do, a chance to put my time to good use and be productive, I find myself wasting valuable minutes perusing Internet smut sites trying to find some lovely young lady who doesn't mind getting filled out like an application in every hole imaginable as I "rub one out" to one of her latest video classics. It's sad, I know, but when I'm not practicing celibacy accidentally, I'm putting a bunch of women that I consider "B-Teamers" on the business end of my chubby pre-ejaculatory habits. So, I justify the hair on my palms and my extremely strong grip to the fact that I haven't fucked an "All Star" since the final days of the Clinton Administration. Yesterday was different though, I mean, I still inappropriately touched myself to a particular woman's small intestines being treated like a fucking pinata, but afterwards I stumbled on something pretty intesting that inspired this very post.
After I read a post from Phonte of Little Brother, one where despite knowing that the crowd he was playing for eagerly awaited other artist's who's CD covers I personally wouldn't wipe my ass with if I was stuck in the wilderness fecally losing weight and they just happened to be there for my disposal, he still was kind of taken aback by the crowd's non response to his groups brand of music. The piece didn't particularly read like an angry diatribe, just a guy openly wondering why people wouldn't broaden their minds to something that he put his heart and soul into. Shit, even if I somehow found myself in front of a few Klan members giving a speech on Reparations, I'd still expect them to at least recognize my biting wit, exemplary word play, and the playful alliteration I used in paragraph two. Anyway, that post on Little Brother's myspace page prompted this gentleman at XXL to give his rebuttal, one where he took umbrage to Phonte, feeling that his words were a frontal assault on the intellectual capacity of certain Hip Hop fans. Regardless if this was Phonte's stance or not, I have to say while holding my nuts in my best B-Boy stance, that some Hip Hop fans are fucking idiots.
Sorry, but the ignorance in said art-form comes from all of us grading on a curve when it comes to every facet of our culture. Only in Hip Hop is the artist allowed to be ignorant, allowed to have the collective I.Q of a bag of rice, and if you attempt to speak out on it other fans and Hip Hop journalists alike will band together like some inbred version of the Justice League, join forces and say that you are "hating". If you fancied yourself a classical musician and you didn't know your Beethoven, Mozart, Haydn, or Shubert, I'm sure that someone with a funny looking white wig would come out of nowhere and beat you to death with a Stradivarius. If you fancied yourself a soul singer and was unaware of the sheer brilliance that was Sam Cook or Marvin Gaye, that particular display of ignorance would not only be frowned upon, it would possibly be capped off with an angry Aretha Franklin profanity laced email where she threatens to sit on you whenever she sees you. But in Hip Hop, when an artist abandons that toothy platinum smile for that deer in headlights look when you mention Kool G Rap or Slick Rick, people deem that "irrelevant", an accepted ignorance that trickles down to that particular artists' fan base.
Listen, some people might feel my view of modern day Hip Hop as just the ramblings of some old guy that's pissed off that Hip Hop culture left him behind, based on the fact that I feel the groups that were on the same bill as Little Brother that night(Three Six Mafia, Rick Ross, Young Dro, Young Joc, Dem Franchize Boyz) are the proverbial shit-stain on the culture. Some people might even try the condescending approach, put their arm on my shoulder, talk to me in subdued tones and say things like "Did your parents like your music? Did your grandparents like your parents music? It's a trend, just sit back and let it happen..." Let me say this delicately because I know I can be a bit abrasive, here we go: "That has to be, seriously, some of the STUPIDEST SHIT I'VE EVER HEARD IN MY LIFE!!"(Ok, a journalist said that the Clipse was "one of the best groups out". So that is up there like a motherfucker)
Hip Hop is not the pet rock, bell-bottom jeans, or some fucking Barbie Easy Bake oven that some of you ladies might have made vomit-inducing treats with as a kid. The reason that Hip Hop doesn't fall into the "changing times" argument is because Hip Hop is like basketball, because the foundation of both has always been "skill". No matter how long the players shorts get, the overall uniform changes, the varying offensive and defensive schemes, even how new dunks are invented with each passing year, one thing that hasn't changed from 1946-2006 is the skill that is needed to be a top tier NBA player. You can see Magic Johnson, Bill Russell, Earl Monroe, or Walt Frazier at a current NBA game because they respect the skill of the modern day player. Unfortunately I don't think you will ever see Rakim or KRS at a "Young Joc" show, even though our culture was based on the foundation of skill the same way Basketball was.
But you wouldn't know it by the way that artists have abandoned any resemblance of lyrical skill, just to make millions of hapless jackasses "Lean" and "Rock" to it like gepetto was your personal puppet master. You wouldn't know it based on half of these so-called "Hip Hop" journalists, incompetent scribes that might call MF DOOM "Nerd Rap", but turn around and collectively act like they are on their period and call you a "hater" when you criticize Lil John. The other half, souls I wouldn't trust like playing basketball with flip flops on(get it), do the Hip Hop equivalent to sero fiddling while Rome is burning, scoffing and disregarding what many feel is the deterioration of Hip Hop as us simply "overreacting".(Plus, many of these motherfuckers will never criticize anyone, not wanting to ruin their chance of one day interviewing Lil Flip)
We also have to abandon this "Condoleeza" way of thinking when it comes to Hip Hop, and I mean immediately. What I mean by that is, you know how you might go up to someone with a razor sharp case specifically breaking down Ms. Rice's blatant incompetence at her job, and the person ridiculously apologizes for her with that "But she is a black woman in a high position!!" nonsense like that erased what a fucking embarrassment she is. People do that with Hip Hop as well, say someone is wack and they say "But they are getting paid though!!"(So are crack dealers..), criticize another tune as being modern day black-face and people say "It's a club song so it's OK!", or the people who act like modern day Hippies, minus the birkenstocks and the tie-dye, and want to give hip hop a giant hug and accept all of it blindly like a mother would embrace all of her children despite how wack one of her kids was . Well Fuck that, if it's wack it's wack, if you don't like it I'm not hard to find.(The house on the corner with the blue trim)
Listen, if one of the groups that I named is one of your guilty pleasures, I'm definitely not trying to say that you have some sort of intellectual deficiency. Hell, I have Wham's "Careless Whisper" in my IPOD, so I have more guilty pleasures than necrophiliacs for Christs sake. But if your Hip Hop collection only has the Ying Yang Twins, Dem Franchize Boys, Young Joc, and groups of that ilk, you my friend might be a dumb-ass. Sorry, I'm only being honest because I love you, but like that single mother raising kids who finally decides to enroll herself at a local university, it is never too late to advance yourself mentally. That means turn off the radio, stop listening to these so called "journalists", recognize that an act is beneath you if you wouldn't feel comfortable asking them for directions if you ever saw them on the street based on their idiocy, and last but not least.....MEMORIZE EVERY LINE OF RAKIM'S "PAID IN FULL". Good luck!