Thursday, February 11, 2010

Why am I blogging about a rapper?

This has got to be a first. I have never posted a rap/hip-hop video or even blogged about it from what I can remember. However here is a Canadian rapper who has been making the rounds on the CEEB and seems to be getting more popular. What is separates him from all the other mainstream rap is his lyrics and attitude. I can't stand the rapping about getting shot and drugs and pimps. It is such a strange culture to be glorifying. This guy is totally down to earth and this song really shows it. Basically he is talking down on how mainstream rap music (at least partially) has created a new form of blaxploitation which has just been encouraged by the average black rapper. Now I can never say something like that because I am as white as they come. I mean I listen to indie-folk and read Kafka. So I really have no credibility.

Shad, however, has much more credibility. Take a listen:

Here are the lyrics Brother (Watching) by Shad:

I try to hold some hope in my heart
For these African youths
Coming up where im from
Many traps to elude
Surrounded by
Mostly white and affluent dudes
And somehow, you expected to have
Mastered this smooth
Swagger and move
With the right walk, the right talk
Fashion and crews
Souls subtly attacked and abused
And whats funny's being black wasn't cool
Where im from til suddenly
you started hearing rap in the school
Hallways
Admist this madness I grew
With knack for amusing through this little skill
For rappin at dudes
An' we all like to laugh at the truth
But when you young and same facts
Pertain to who you rappin em to
Well, I opted not to bring
That to the booth
But after a while, it sort of starts naggin at you
The crazed infatuation with blackness
That trash that gets viewed
And the fact that the tube only showed blacks
Actin the fool and I was watching...

(saturated with negative images and a limited range of
Possibilities is strange...)

And its sad cuz that naturally do
Sort of condition your mind and over time
That's whats attractive to you
So young blacks don't see themselves in
Scholastic pursuits
Or the more practical routes
Its makin tracks or its hoops
Or God-forbid movin packs for the loot
Even with this music we so limited - its rap or produce
And that narrow conception of whats black isn't true
Of course, still we feel forced to adapt to this view
Like theres something that youre havin to prove
Now add that to the slew
Of justification the capitalists use
For the new blaxploitation
Many actions excused
In the name of getting cash
That's adversely impactin our youth
With mental slavery, the shackles is loose
And its hard to cut chains when they attached at the roots
So what the new black activists do
For our freedom is just being them
Do what youre passionate to
Not confined by a sense that you have to disprove
Any stereotypes, so-called facts to refute
Or match any image of blackness
They've established as true
Perhaps we'll break thru the glass ceilings
Shatter the roof and emerge
From these boxes that they have us in cooped
And grow to smash the bold that they casted of you
I'll keep watching...
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