if you claim to “like rap music” and you only listen to white rappers i don’t trust you
i hope this is sarcasm…. rap mean “rhythm and poetry” nowhere does it say you have to be black…
thoughts on kanye, hip hop, and humanity.
okay, this is not going to bash him or address problematic things in his music regarding homophobia or sexism or excess or anything else. while those things are important, that is not this discussion.
Whaaaat? Kanye as a serious, influential, complex, public figure????? Pshhh. Please.
Kanye West is just an ongoing joke for nonblack people. He’s a living meme with no internal life except for that which one can make jokes about. see: the entirety of Aziz Ansari’s career.
hip-hop, especially when mainstream, is part catharsis and part performance. there’s a sense of airing out your laundry while simultaneously letting everyone know that you still look better than them on the day you go to the cleaners and have nothing to wear. it’s a way of retracing your steps by george-jefferson-strolling past where you stumbled and fell. you tell who you were when you had nothing and you proclaim who you are now that you have it all. you came from nothing to be the best and everyone will know about it. OR, even if you still have nothing, you’re still a bad ass motherfucker and it may not be much, but it’s yours and you’ll be damned if you don’t think the most of it.
That being said, Kanye’s trajectory throughout his career has been something almost painfully intimate for me. literally, from College Dropout all the way up through My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy and Watch The Throne, Kanye has been a heartbreakingly beautiful example of my previous explanation while still maintaining an extremely public persona. Honestly. Since the beginning of his career, he’s had to deal with losing his mother and his fiancee, plus two relationships (one on-going) that have all been subject to extremely harsh and public scrutiny.
So here we are, with a man who had, in a sense, found himself very suddenly alone and vulnerable and had to find a way to work through that while still a) being a public figure and b) keeping up with a demand for more music from him. And he did both. And he continued to produce high-quality music. And we walked us through every step of him doing it. I mean, let’s face it, whether you’re one of those people who thinks College Dropout, feature-on-Def-Poetry-Jam Kanye West is the one who needs to come back, or one of those people who thinks Watch The Throne was the second coming of rap, Kanye has averaged around a certain standard of personal excellence.
But threaded through all of that has been considerable pain. I mean, all of 808s and Heartbreak is basically cataloging his feelings while dealing with loss. We can go through the songs album by album — there’s at least one song on each album that chronicles struggles with loss, doubt, racism, ambition in the face of hopelessness, death, sickness, struggles with ego, struggles with fame, and more and more and more and he’s been painfully open about so much of it while simultaneously striving for perfection.
And we’ve turned him into a sideshow. A meme. An empty persona. Aziz’s punchline. A hashtag. And I’m not saying that it’s wrong to poke fun at him or chuckle when we look back at things he’s said and done — but we can’t forget that he is a man. A person. Someone who suffered immense loss and was torn down through it. Someone who has prided himself in trying to be the best, but is often cast aside or belittled for it.
I’m not saying he’s beyond reproach or beyond any ridicule or criticism or even that his music has to be touted by all as the best shit to happen since MP3s. But really, we cannot strip him or any other Black person, famous or otherwise, of their humanity, their pain, their pride, their creativity, and their personal excellence. No one deserves that. It’s unfair as shit.
“If noah had the benefit of hindsight on his ship he would’ve snatched 2 unicorns and left behind the fuckin pigs.” -aesop rock
Created and submitted by wa55up-y0
lost my original post so i found the one with the most notes
Someone better be working on an ODB hologram
Wu Wood: Wooden Posters!
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Method Man <3