Between Notorious B.I.G. and L'il Kim, there are a few (dead AND alive) hip hop artists making the news this week.
L'il Kim will spend a year in jail for perjury, and the family of B.I.G. continues to struggle to be compensated for his unsolved murder. (oh come on, anyone who would run a label called "Death Row Records" is BOUND to be your guy)
If I didn't so deeply hate hip-hop, rap and gangsta I would be disappointed in myself. This "musical" genre is, in my opinion, and with only a few exceptions, completely worthless. Which, I suppose, explains the popularity of it among today's youth.
I remember being severely castigated by my parents for listening to Zeppelin, Foreigner, Steve Miller Band, Billy Idol and Wang Chung. (hey, how did that one get in there?) Their parents gave them fits about Elvis and James Brown. Each generation of music paints a picture of it's body of fans, and the songs seek to find answers to the issues of those people.
I just don't see rap and hip-hop as a progression along those lines. I see it as angry poetry disguised as music, designed to keep it's consumers angry and obsessed with sex. (wow, don't I sound like a prude?) To me, it's not breaking any new ground, just churning up that which has already been slashed and burned. It doesn't help me understand the plight of today's youth, it makes me wonder why people so willingly support a genre of music which glorifies such violence, and whose artists regularly "pop" each other...
The fact that the music is generally "enjoyed" at a high decibel level and pushing the limits of a pair of 16" 1000-watt woofers, it would appear the listener is trying to be noticed. I guess the vehicular "bling" would be another clue, I saw $1000 spinner rims and expensive paint job on an 81 Ford Fairmont the other day.
Well, here's a piece of advice... if you want to be noticed, put on an old Flock of Seagulls CD.
Then you'll be noticed. And, you will likely know real anger.