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Article May 25 2016 Written by

Hip Hop Sucks (Or So I Thought)

Like plenty of other kids I grew up around I was raised under the impression that Hip Hop is trash, it shouldn’t be considered a genre because it isn’t even music. Throughout elementary school listening to Rap music isn’t something I would even consider doing, and in middle school that trend continued once I was really exposed to it for the first time. Artists that were big at the time like Lil Wayne are easy for me to have an appreciation for today, but “Lollipop” definitely wasn’t going to change the way I looked at the genre. I don’t think it was until my junior year in high school that I liked Rap music period.

Up until this point the only music I really listened to was Classic Rock (disregarding that Heavy Metal phase that we’ve all gone through) and today Rock n’ Roll remains a personal favorite genre of mine, right up there with Hip Hop. I was very ignorant when it came to exploring new music for the first 15 years of my life, I listened to whatever my dad listened to and that was that. Things began to change my junior year once I heard a song unlike anything else that I’d ever come across. I’ve always been big into skateboarding and I was just watching videos online one day when I found an edit to “Put it On” by Big L and for whatever reason it blew my f****** mind. This song shattered every perception I had on Rap music up until this point, the mindless jibber jabber was completely MIA, and I didn’t hear a single line with the phrase big booty bitches in it. Instead this song had lyrics, a hard beat that matched Big L’s flow and wordplay perfectly, and most of all it was fun to listen to.

288-1995

Later I looked up Lifestylez Ov Da Poor & Dangerous and I was even more shocked once I realized I liked the entire album, no I loved the entire album. I needed to find more music like this and I noticed that the record was released way back in 1995. None of my friends were into that golden age s*** at the time so I was on my own to hunt down some MC’s that captured the same response triggered once Big L began to spit over “Put it On”. I did some research and found the group D.I.T.C so I decided to check out their members and the first I stumbled upon was Lord Finesse. I jumped straight into Funky Technician and started to notice the trend that 90’s Rap wasn’t about a catchy hook, or a beat to shake your a** to, it was about lyrics and making good music. O.C kept me going with Word Life and Diamond D’s Stunts Blunts and Hip Hop is still one of my favorite albums today.

151-1991

A Tribe Called Quest hooked me on that funky-jazz type Hip Hop the first time I listened to The Low End Theory and The Notorious B.I.G redefined gansta rap for me with Ready to Die. Dr. Dre showed me how important production is on The Chronic and MF DOOM literally expanded my vocabulary on Operation: Doomsday. Every one of those albums is unlike one another and I guess the reason it was so hard for me to dive into modern rap music is because so much of the mainstream sounds the same.

376-1999

Hip Hop is such a unique and special genre of music because every artist, every producer, and every scene brings something new to the table. Rock n’ Roll typically has the same group playing new music, and that’s great but it begins to grow stale. In real, raw Hip Hop new artists are constantly collaborating with new producers and each and every song sounds so different from one another that the music evolves unlike any other genre. It took some gems from the 90’s to enlighten my taste and make me appreciate the music we have today, and I couldn’t be any happier that that’s the way it worked out. I get to hear some of my favorite artists sampled in songs that get produced in modern music and it’s really special to be able to recognize how the big names today pay homage to those that have come before them.

Hip Hop is not dead, as a matter of fact it’s far from it. Artists today are beginning to do the unthinkable by bringing music with a message into the mainstream and the most relevant example would have to be Kendrick Lamar’s To Pimp a Butterfly. I’d bet in the next ten years we’re going to hear some incredible albums by dozens of artists and who knows, maybe the golden age is just getting started.  Besides all of that how could Hip Hop ever die if Wu Tang is forever?

best hip hop albums of the millennium

Written by

College kid and a general Hip Hop lover. I don’t need to relate to my music to be completely obsessed with it.…

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