What comes to mind when you think about classic albums in Hip Hop?
"Illmatic” by Nas, “Straight Outta Compton” by NWA, “The Chronic” by Dr. Dre, “Enter the Wu-Tang (36 Chambers)” by Wu-Tang Clan, “All Eyez on Me” by 2Pac. Those are just to name a few. Hip Hop, in my opinion, is the greatest genre in the music industry, but it’s lost it’s spark as time went along and still is.
KRS-One said, “Love yourself and your expression, you can’t go wrong.” That’s the problem with Hip Hop now. So many people are just doing it for the money, the fame, the girls, and not for the love of music. When that happens, you have labels taking advantage of rappers with no business mindset.
Now, don’t get me wrong. You have artists like Lil Wayne, Drake, Nicki Minaj, Jay-Z, 50 Cent, and many more artists with great business savvy minds. That’s why they’re so successful. They don’t let the fat cat executives take advantage of them. It’s like Eminem said in an interview a while ago and in the song, “Syllables”. He said that artists, if you can even call them artists anymore, are only concerned with having a hot beat and a catchy hook, lyrics don’t matter anymore.
Eminem is a great rapper and he’s the best to many people. He has had a few classic albums himself. “The Slim Shady LP”, “The Eminem Show”, and his biggest was probably “The Marshall Mathers LP”. Personally, I’ve liked every Eminem album, and his latest album, “Recovery”, has definitely had some critics in Hip Hop. Many rappers have been criticized for having a “poppy” sound and not Hip Hop. I agree with that. Nobody knows Eminem for “Love The Way You Lie” featuring Rihanna, one of the princesses of pop today. That’s not the Eminem I’m used to, but I understand the album. He went through emotional issues and had to get it out. I’ve had to do the same thing with my music. Regardless, Eminem is still one of the only true emcees left in Hip Hop.
I blame two sources for the slip and dying of Hip Hop. 1. Record label executives who are concerned about making a dollar. And 2. The ignorance of rappers today. These catchy hooks and hot beat rappers, rappers who are only concerned with hyping the club up and not concerned about lyrics, rappers that listen to the label heads and only do music for the dollar. Lyricists tell us stories and make us feel emotions. They speak for us. Nobody can feel anything from a rapper chanting the same chant 27 times in one song. It’s absolutely ridiculous.
Things want change though, but this is just how I feel. You could call this venting. Record labels are not interested in artist development because they want to make the quickest dollar as possible. It’s also hard for many artists to make the music that they want because labels want to stick to the same philosophy and that’s to make catchy songs to catch a person’s ear. Albums aren’t selling. Illegal downloading is still going on. Concert ticket sales are going down. The music industry is collapsing. Hip Hop is a big example of this. The artists who are selling? Eminem, Jay-Z, Drake, Kanye West, Lil Wayne. Those are artists who are actual lyricists and aren’t concerned with catchy tunes. So why do labels still decide to make catchy songs and then complain that it doesn’t sale? That’s some food for thought.
Let’s save Hip Hop and the whole music industry. I know I plan to.