Dear Saint Laurent Don – Hip Hop has spoken…..
Since you reached out to us, please let me respond back in the same manner. I understand your anger with my generation of hip hop, I do, and I believe that your generation is holding down this current form of rap music right now but my brother there are some things we should discuss and since you reached out to us specifically, here goes.
You started your recent diatribe like every other recent diatribe in regard to the previous generation by calling us “old niggas,” so of course every dialogue you have with us or in regard to us from this point on isn’t going to be filled with “fatherly advice”. Direct.disrespect garners more disrespect in any era. You respect us then we respect you.
“Our generation, like yours, was hated by many but never by it’s own”
Your generation was handed a billion dollar baby and most of those currently in the top ten don’t even know what it was like nor do you seem to even care about this gift you’ve been handed nor the craft or art it took us to even get hip hop to this stage of the game, and that in a big part is our fault for not being more favourable and fatherly to our future counterparts when you showed up.
We don’t respect ya’ll because ya’ll don’t respect us – period. It’s no secret that my generation was built on bars, metaphors, and ridiculous drum tracks but there was so much more that you never saw and never will. There wasn’t a lot of money back then, this art was built on creativity and a need to have a voice to speak to a government and world that had left us for dead and did not give a fuck about us.
That’s why we don’t wanna call ya’ll “hip hop”, because hip hop was a culture, a way of life that spoke to those in power and demanded that the world hear our side and our stories. Hip hop helped us communicate and unify people from Alaska to Korea and before the money it saved a lot of black and brown lives that needed an outlet.
Our generation, like yours, was hated by many but never by it’s own. It was hated by the oppressors who where angry that we found a way to get the message of our bondage and ill treatment out to the world. Hip hop started as something so powerful and beautiful and then something happened, and that is why your generation is here and rich and why my generation can no longer be respected on the same levels and receives crumbs.
The oppressors realized if they owned and controlled the major labels,the urban radio and the music distribution, they would be able to influence and control the people again. This started happening in the early 1990s and it has been an horrific and downward spiral for the culture of hip hop ever since my brother and now your arrival on the scene, (and many others like you) has sped up this deterioration process.
You guys knew there was no way you could out-rap the previous generation, but instead of protecting and nurturing this precious culture handed to you by your forefathers, you dumbed. You took the bread and butter of the early hip hop pioneers and made it sound like an inaudible, drug induced zombie fest with production standards that resemble the composition level of a 2 year old playing with a musical toy.
The only way we can put things right, and bring hip hop through this impasse, is for the BG’s and the OG’s to collaborate more and open roads for everybody. Hip hop has always had multiple genres and multiple streams of income and outlets for creativity and growth, not just a bloodlust for money and drugs. This was and still is our voice to the world, not just a road to the bank. We want hop hop to live and her having babies is cool as long as they know and respect who their fathers and grandfathers are and know their history. Recognise our gift to you and instil this same ethic in future generations.
By reaching out you may be the one new rapper that can reunite the spark that got all of us here. By reaching out and venting you made your anger heard worldwide my brother and guess what? that’s exactly how hip hop got us all here! use your platform to leave something positive for the next generation so there is no rift and the real hip hop can continue. For that you can be forever remembered and this music (the real part of it) can last forever.