Monday, October 19, 2009


Last August I was on the A Train heading to the city, and I over-heard this Black mature teenager telling one of his friends how this wanna-be thug tried to dis by calling him an Uncle Tom because he was into rapper Lupe Fiasco instead of Lil' Wayne, who the ignorant ass kid dubbed the greatest rapper. The kid told his friend that he whipped that nigga's ass and told him not to ever disrespect him again.
I was proud of that kid for standing his ground because it seems like most people are always putting down people for their choices of music, which I think is the most stupidiest ass thing to do. Just because a person doesn't like a particular artist doesn't give them the right to mistreat them.
I recall many people making fun of me because of my choices of music.
When I was in junior high, one kid came up to me and asked 'What you doing listening to Culture Club?" while some just laughed and acted very ignorant.
A year later this Black Indian-Domenican girl told me, please don't bring your Tina Turner, Aretha Franklin and your Ray Charles to the Christmas Party because they're played out. She was shocked and upset because I wasn't heavily into Rap music. I had brought Tina's single We Dont' Need Another Hero (Thunderdome) to homeroom and our teacher, who's late brother Juggy Murrary, had signed Tina and her ex to their first record deal in 1960.
On the subject of Rap music, when M.C. Hammer burst on the scene in 1989, it seemed that most Black kids from New York didn't like him or any entertainer that was affiliated with the Award winning rap legend, who's sophmore album "Please Hammer Don't Hurt 'Em" was the first Hip-Hop album to sell over ten million copies in the US. I was a huge fan of the Hammer man, because of his music, his style of dress and the way he danced and gave you a show, and it seemed that many brothers from the church I used to attend, weren't fans of him or his posse. I recall going to a meeting the night I brought his tape, and one of the choir members, (who was also a member of a now-defuncted quote-on-quote conscious rap group) got mad, and said "I should smack you! Wby didn't you get the single?
"It was sold out! I replied. He was so pissed at me for buying Hammer's tape, that he would constantly ask me when was I going to purchase Howard Hewitt's self-titled release.
As long as I've been listening to and purchasing music, it seemed that the most criticism I received was from Blacks, who fells that a Black person is only supposed to certain types fo music and if they don't, then they're considered to be not hip, soft and not quote on quote down. PLEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEZE!!!!!!!!!
Just becasue a person doesn't listen to a certain rapper doesn't make them soft. Everybody has the right to their opinion, but that doesn't mean you have to put down a person because they may not like the artist you like. I bet they would be pissed if a White man called them ignorant for listenigng to rap music all the time.
They need to understand that many Black artists had to fight to get the recognition, the airplay and the respect by the mass media to become the success that they are. They had to perform in hotels they wouldn't allow them to stay after they performed several times a night as well as having to use dirty toliets and sinks while traveling through the south before the intergration laws came into affect, so they should be grateful for the artist who fought to have music accessable for all people to listen to.


Anonymous said...

This is so true, Ra Shawn! Music is supposed to be colorblind and universal as musicians, rappers, singers, and songwriters are telling stories through music. I am like this: I can listen to many genres, whether it is R&B, soul, pop, dance, house, hip-hop, rap, gospel, jazz, country, Alternative, Latin, World Music, African, dancehall, reggae, opera, what have you, and I am still African-American. Some Black people do not know that we have originated every musical genre all over the world. Rock n' roll is from us but White people such as Elvis Presley, Pat Boone, Buddy Holly, and Jerry Lee Lewis redid many songs written and performed by Black performers, who had been gipped and downplayed by music historians in the 195os. This is going on now in hip-hop, which is now seen as lucrative by the powers that be, which are not the grass-roots rappers who began the genre in the 1970s in the parks, playgrounds, and other places where working-class Black and Latino could not gain access to like Studio 54. If people knew their history, then Blacks who listen to music outside of the norm wouldn't be criticized or ridiculed. Music is music for God's sake, so sit back, relax, and listen to music, whether the musician is Tina Turner, Chrisette Michelle, Beyonce, Taylor Swift, Green Day, Toby Keith, Sean Paul, or whomever.


Thank you. It pisses me off to see how many Black people be the main ones who be cricizing those who like all types of music