Black People Really Heart Progressive Hip-Hop…

Yesterday I skipped out on the ignoramus show also known as the XXL mag Dot Com comments thread to attend a concert organized by a progressive group called the Malcolm X Grassroots Movement. These are the types of negroes that are all about trying to fight for equality and justice in neighborhoods where the impoverished residents are constantly being harassed and threatened by the police. These are the traditionally under-served areas where the schools are failing and falling apart. There aren’t any healthy nutritional options for the residents of these areas and these are the neighborhoods where the law UNforcement is actually state sponsored terrorism. Basically, poor Black and Latino communities.

MXGM has been organizing a music event every August for the last ten years. The Black August concert helps raise funds for the MXGM to run some of their operations which include the CopWatch program that uses video to document and expose police brutality, and the seminars they host which teach people their rights and procedures to follow when being terrorized by police. The MXGM’s goal is essentially empowerment through education and community development. That shit might sound lofty and pie in the sky to some of you people but after over ten years of active resistance to Supremacy I see that MXGM is dedicated to their cause. And that’s more than I can say for myself.

I stopped believing that impoverished communities could be saved years ago. I’m more concerned now that working class and middle class communities are adopting the values of the poor. It’s impossible to transfer the value of education to a person that is part of the classic poverty set. That’s like feeding milk to someone who is lactose intolerant. Their internal system can’t digest it. The same way poor people can’t appreciate the value of education or hard work that doesn’t provide instant gratification. The Malcolm X Grassroots Movement has been defending a segment of the population that doesn’t even give a fuck about them. That’s some pretty heavy shit on my mind. I don’t know why some of the folks at the MXGM even carry on with their movement. It would be so much easier to just help lightskinned Blacks further assimilate like the NAACP does than to help the poor Black people find empowerment for their lives. Especially when those niggers will throw rocks at you at the end of the day anyhoo. But still the MXGM perserveres.

Yesterday’s concert was a tribute to all the political prisoners that the MXGM supports as well as a recognition of the 60th birthday of Assata Shakur. Blackstar was scheduled to perform and dead prez, who has been in the front of this movement from the gate was also going to bless the stage. In the back of my mind I thought that Common or KanYe might show up too since Chicago as a city has a long history in supporting grassroots movements. Whether it be for worker’s rights or anti-police brutality platforms. DJ Evil Dee and DJ D-Nice were listed as the music providers. This meant that I’d get to hear some Black Moon, KRS-1 and a whole lot of other rap music that hasn’t been on the radio in a decade, certainly no DipSet, Jeezy or Fifty Cent from the speakers on this night. I’m not complaining either, I’m just saying.

A couple of acts opened the show up that were diverse and definitely setting the mood for a classic backpacker vibe. I don’t know if you cats have ever heard of this group from Chicago called Rebel Diaz, but they got on stage first. They have a Puerto Rican chick in their group who has that rapid fire rap style that so many Puerto Ricans can employ. How do they do that? The next group was a Hip-Hop harmonizing quintet called something God Iz. I kind of forget their name because I went to the bathroom and the bar and the vending area. I could still hear them performing and they had someone doing a beatbox as their background music. Just the usual Biz Markie type sound and nothing along the lines of a Dougie Fresh or a Rahzel. I was starting to feel like maybe I shouldn’t have begged Eskay to give me this assignment. The concert was starting to have the feel of one of those talent showcases that you might see in a church basement, except we were in the Nokia Theatre in Times Square, NYC.

DJ D-Nice came on to do a set and he was having some technical difficulties with his equipment [||], he became so frustrated he cut his set short. Right behind D-Nice some of the RBG family got on the mic. Dudes name was Umi and I don’t know if he is part of the A-Alikes or not, maybe one of you white cats knows the deal on homey. White cats be knowing shit you don’t expect them to know. White cats were in the building too, but that’s always expected when I go to see good music somewhere. If you have a sick flow and a hard ass beat a white will get their bounce on to a song no matter what. Even if that shit is called ‘Kill ‘Dat Cracker!’. White didn’t overwhelm the audience this time like they did at the Rock The Bells show. I was pleasantly surprised to see how many Black people actually showed up for this event. My only explanation for this must be that MXGM was giving away too many comp tickets.

dead prez came onstage and that began the feature part of the evening. I have to give a shout to the show’s organizers for how they ordered the edutainment. Right after dead prez’ set they brought onto the stage several activists that defined the Malcolm X Grassroots Movement and the purpose of the struggle at hand. Please take a few minutes to read their ‘About Us’ website page and support the movement in any way that you think is progressive. These folks are putting in the infantry work that ultimately doesn’t get recorded or respected, but without their efforts I wonder where we all would be right now with our struggle with Supremacy.

Malcolm X Grassroots Movement

That’s when the show started up again and it didn’t stop until we were all Hip-Hop’d out. DJ Scratch did his turntablist thing. Mos Def came out and got the crowd rocking with his singing and emceeing. Mos Def is what being an emcee is all about. Most rappers don’t realize that being a Master of the Ceremony means that you have to keep the audience in check when tech problems arise. The Nokia Theatre sound crew had several problems with their equipment last night, but Mos kep everybody in the crowd laughing and ready to party. When a group of white up against the stage was yelling for Blackstar, Mos shut them down telling them that by yelling out it would not make Talib Kweli fall from the rafters. The show had an order and they were gonna have to wait. What we got for waiting was more than we paid for.

We got a set from Common, whose ‘Finding Forever’ was not lost on this crowd of fans who prah’lee didn’t read the internets reviews of the rap music experts. We got a long set from Talib as well as the Blackstar hits that we knew were going to drop. I’ve seen Mos and Talib perform prah’lee six billion times in my life and I never get tired of their sets because they add a new wrinkle every time. It’s like these two friends are in their parent’s basement just kicking shit passing the trees back and forth and just having fun. One of my favorite points in Talib’s set was when Jazzy Joyce put on the instrumentals for NaS’ ‘I Can’ and then Talib induced the crowd to sing the chorus with him. LOL and Purple Hulk were definitely not part of this engaged and willing audience. The show closed with Mos Def performing ‘Umi Says’ and the entire theatre singing along with him. Overall, it was a great evening for peace, love and unity through Hip-Hop, and what do you know, Black people actually outnumbered the white in the audience. I guess Black folks really do love the Hip-Hop shit.

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    Sounds like a dope show, wish I could have been there. Ive seen Talib and Mos perform and your right they always rock the crowd so does Common. I was at a DeadPrez show where the LAPD shut it down I’m glad this went on with out incident. i’m sure the hip hop police was in full swing just waiting for something to go down and exploit it, good post.

    Oh yeah, LOL and Purpl Hlk the iLovers will probably be shit all over this post.

  • ah huh

    Did anyone get shot?, sounds like my kinda concert. I know it all sounds a good ol’ blackpower pop off but that was the revolutionary rap I used to enjoy. let the lttle haterz come in and say hiphop is not dead and has infact evolved …. puhleez,

  • T.R.E.Y.


  • lookadeez

    that was fucking hilarious Bol! I am encouraging you when you do good, like the little lap dog you ar so that you will keep it up. here is a virtual treat for you. That’s right, spin around and jump on your hind legs!!YAAAY!!

  • lookadeez

    oops, ur not Bol– my bad!

  • Billy X. Sunday

    Big Rob,
    Yeah man the show was fireworks. I borrowed a camera to catch some images and I have to go upload the contents to my Mac at home. Video and pics to come soon.

  • DARK

    billy sunday is one of those token black cops u find in a crowd of white cops harrassin black ppl because he sucks up to tha whiteman he loves so fuckin much hes a mordern day slave.he does wut hes told by tha whiteman cause hes a sell out uncle tom whitemans whore i say fuck billy no x (cause u r a slave)sunday.Black Power.p.s. bol and billy r closet fags.and anybody who thinks slavery is really over is a fuckin idiot.

  • emmanuel

    good post Mr.X …. fuck all the haters, tell ‘em to “jump off your dick, lay off and stay off”

  • Billy X. Sunday

    I don’t sweat these fraud faggot Freud ass internet thugs. These are the bitches that invented snitching.

    These dumb ass niggers get stuck by my drops on the daily.

    On your best day you just a simple simon. You the type of bitch ass snitch nigger to trade your gun in for a toy.

    I toy with your mind nigger [ll].

  • DARK

    toy with my mind?naw nigga its tha whiteman dat toyin wit ur mind u slave ass bitch nigga u truely r one of those token uncle toms dat try to fit in with the whiteclub ur a fag you might ass well put bleach alll over ur skin and make ur self white u fuckin butt pirate.

  • Belize

    > Mos Def is what being an emcee is all about.

    ive never seen mos live..but from what Iv heard he’s hard to hear on the mike. Any validity?

  • LOL


  • AK VS The Wurldd

    lol @ lol

  • for the record

    when you say “niggers”, it’s make you sound like a whiteboy who really doesn’t like black people.

  • LOL




  • C-Money

    Billy X – How was Dead Prez live?? Those motherfuckers are crazy

  • Billy X. Sunday

    For some of you readers…

    Nigga or nigger does not equal Black people in any of my usage.

    Nigga = homey, comrade
    Nigger = dumb ass, estupido

    If you did the knowledge on the etymology of the word nigger then you would already know that white used the word at other white before they convinced you that it referred only to Blacks.

    The word nigger describes a working class and not a merchant or gentry. To tell someone that they could only be a worker all their life is to say that their caste lot could not be changed.

    You need to shut the fuck up and come from outside your little bedroom in your momma’s house. You been sleeping on that same lil’ dude bed for almost 15 years. Get out and go get a job so at least you can by yourself a grown man bed if you can’t move out.

  • Billy X. Sunday

    Belize, C-Money,

    I demand that you two see any show with dead prez and Mos Def on the marquee.

    Shit, any of these acts alone is what’s up. The energy that the dp’s, Common Sense, Mos and Talib bring to the stage along with their respective catalogs is a good time. Socially conscious rap music(for lack of a better term) bounces when it’s coming for your mind.

  • G2

    My cousin was in NYC just for that show! dead prez, Common, and BlackStar are on a different level than the ish we are force-fed on the radio and t.v. I’ve seen footage of Mos and Kwe freestyling, that I would’ve paid for. I was lucky enough to catch Krs1, and I don’t think anybody can touch him freestylin’, and my man is 40 plus!

  • Belize

    @ X,

    Werd..I saw KrS and Rakim and both of those set the bar high for MC’ing….Method Man is one of the best showmen Iv ever seen (up there wit Busta and Clef- dont sleep on clef’s performance skills either)…If u like DP style..check out this kid that be opening shows out here…I think u might like it

    He sounds a lil bit like Immortal Tech. to me, but u might might dig it (no e-plug, cuz I dont know this cat)

  • these posts are racist

    Billy, nice article. While I do hate your usage of the “N” word, especially with “er” at the end of it–I’m very impressed and refreshed by your overall analysis.

    Your first paragraph, especially, was very unpoint…and only someone who has lived/experienced such community and cares for those who suffer could write that. Props.

    As far as the poorest in our community not being able to digest, etc. I feel your frustration man. While I believe that it is the govt.’s responsibility to fix what they broke over hundreds of years of oppression and not giving folks their chance to succeed, I understand what it feels like to view the problem from your perspective. When you come from those communities and your realize the govt. doesn’t give a fuck about you, you feel like shaking people and saying “Look, you have to do for self! Because nobody gives a fuck!” But in reality the problem is more complex than that.

    Recenly, when I’ve been coming home from work, there’s this 11 year old young brother who is standing in front of my apt. building begging for change. I took him to the side and gave him a speech. Similar to that Nas “I Can” song, I said look “you’re 11, i’m 28. you don’t want to be my age begging”. So I bought him a box of various candies and told him to sell each bag and come back every two days with the money he made. I arranged with a local store to sell him a box of m&m’s at cost…and he can turn around and make a profit on each pack he sells.

    Will this change the little brother’s life? Probably not. I live downtown Chi, he lives in the hood on the south side. Its frustrating.

    In any case, good job with this article.

  • lawl

    so LOL, what have black people moved on to?

  • DTL

    check REAL hip hop moving with real instruments.

  • Moe Real

    @ Billy X. Dickday: You defend your use of the N-word by pointing to the etymology of the N-word, as interpreted by you. It’s circular logic, asshole. It’s not a good look.

    @ TPAR – Dude, no one believes your stupid, made-up, righteous stories.

  • P-Matik

    That was dope that you tried to school a young brother like that. For real, you might have really changed his whole course of life.

    Each one teach one, a lot of heads don’t succeed because they are devoid of information.

  • boner jams 03

    billy..excellent post my man…

    “i mean i like bol…bol is aight…but billy x. sunday is for the children…” (c)odb

  • dolo

    dark .. your comments are getting tired you just come and here and sling insults.. what are u really doing to combat teh uncle toms ??

    TPAR. . you late man .. if u right the nyc subways all u see are young cats selling m&M’s to “stay outta trouble and keep money in their pockets” .. nice gesture tho

  • C-Money

    TPAR – all you could do is educate and it’s up to them to take your advice. You can’t save everybody but that shouldn’t stop you from trying. I don’t always agree with your views but I can respect that shit.

    Sunday – I got to see Talib on the RTB in Boston and this nigga brought the house down. I remember someone telling me he was spitting gibberish and I almost bitch slapped him and said pick up a book. Technique was there too and he had everyones attention throughout.

    Trust me man I been trying to see Mos, DP, and other socially conscious rappers for a minute but nobody be coming to Boston like that. The energy those cats bring must be ridculous though. I’d make the trip to NY if i have to.

  • these posts are racist

    “TPAR. . you late man .. if u right the nyc subways all u see are young cats selling m&M’s to “stay outta trouble and keep money in their pockets” .. nice gesture tho”

    –they do that in Chicago too. I was one of those kids 17 years ago. My point was to try and instill in him the idea that he should never beg and hustle for what he needs. I respect those young cats selling candy “to pay for their football league”.

  • Billy X. Sunday

    I feel you on that grown man shit[ll], it takes a lot to look at someone and see yourself in their predicament. Don’t think cause I ain’t blocking your comments that we are cool though.

    Each one, teach one is real life real talk. Freedom in our lifetime brother.

  • Ryan

    I don’t think Dark would move, cause then LOL wouldn’t be able to find his room anymore. I think he sneaks up there Repunzel style cause they have a clandestine love affair.

  • Rich Arte

    @tpar, that was a good look, but what’s he gonna hustle 5 years from now…MORE m&m’s??? what’s he gonna do when he finds out those green plants bring in a higher profit than sugary sweets???
    no disrespect whatsoever, so don’t take it out of context as a sneak diss or whatever, just curious. because when I get approached at the gas station by some 12 year olds wanting to pump my gas for me, it saddens me and I just end up giving them a few dollars, smh. I can respect the hustle, and tho it’s not up to us to help them out (but it really is, isn’t it?) we do what we can when we can.

    I just read your story, and it was uplifting, but i instantly thought about 5 years from now, after he’s been introduced to the hustle, and it made me think about the movie “clockers”. It’s sad, but what else are we to do???

  • Around and Around

    Nice uplifting story by TPAR. When I was 5 I pimped LOL, Dark, and Purple Bruce Banner’s Mom.

    Which gave me a stable of one ho, since they’re all the same person.

  • boner jams 03

    LMAO @ “lil’ dude bed “!!!nigga that shit was funny as hell!! u almost got me fired!

  • these posts are racist

    “Don’t think cause I ain’t blocking your comments that we are cool though.”

    And why are you not cool with me?

  • Dr Flav

    Nice gesture TPAR, its just up to us to do God’s work, he will handle the outcome. I have a problem with the generalization of the poor and how they have limited aspirations. You are contradictory on this, are you pleased with the cause or being cynical? Chicago has a long history of activism, dont be surprised, “pseudo smart negro”. PS Lol @ William being eskay’s “do boy.” Anything for the shine I guess…

  • these posts are racist

    “I have a problem with the generalization of the poor and how they have limited aspirations. You are contradictory on this, are you pleased with the cause or being cynical?”

    Is this directed at me? I don’t think the poor have limited aspirations. I disagree with Billy on this, but felt like i got his overall message and didn’t want to detract from that. I also stated that i understand why he feels like this, but i don’t believe it’s true.

  • drydock

    Billy– I’ve read a bunch of your columns, never commented, but this one was the best I’ve seen so far. Real talk not ideology. TPAR’s comments were good, too.

    Generally, I agree. The working class, particularly the subset of young black men who work for a living, need to be protected from those that get caught up in criminal and other negative bullshit. The best chance for the (ghetto) poor is that American workers (of all races) get organized and force some significant trickle down. The poor are way too fucked to do anything at this point.

    People like to bring up the Panthers as a model of political resistance. Their big mistake IMO was to think that they could organize the criminal element (the lumpen) into there group. Those were the guys they ended up being the snitches and cointelpro provacateurs that helped destroy the once promising organization.

  • Purple Hulk



  • Dr Flav

    TPAR, Nope the poverty thing was for Billy, I threw you some props, should have used better separation of those points.

  • Dr Flav

    Good shit drydock!

  • these posts are racist

    Cool Dr Flav.

    Drydock, nice comment. I think the Panther downfall was more contrived. There is massive amounts of evidence that shows the FBI (hoover, etc.) worked to bring down all forms of Black empowerment. They used illegal wiretapping, falsified information, killed people, blackmaled and harassed members.

    I feel you though. The nihlist in me comes out when I can’t blame myself for something like this. I wish I could look internally, but the evidence is there. Those racist mutherfuckers deliberatley destroyed the Panther and other Black empowerment movements.

  • DARK

    billy sunday,
    why dont u shut da fuck up and come out of ur closet u scared lil bitch made mafucka wuts wrong son is wut im sayin hittin close to home?u sound like a homothug who begs to go to prison.ur a white dick suckin cunt billy u mark ass trick fuck u son.

  • Billy X. Sunday

    Shouts to TPAR, Dr.Flav and first time commenter drydock. I’ve been working here for how many months and I’ve been waiting to get a thread that gets people with sincere thoughts and not inane faggotry typed in all capital letters. Props to y’all.

    Getting back to TPAR who practiced an ‘Each One, Teach One’ philosophy with the shorty. That lil’ dude knows right from wrong and he seems to have a work ethic that will at least motivate him to seek a creative solution.

    Ultimately, shorty dude has to be proactive in his education. That’s a lot to ask from folks that are just trying to get by. Our government isn’t concerned about people unless they can turn a profit from their labor. This is why there is a prison industrial complex.

    We, as people of color are under attack several ways from Sunday by the forces of Supremacy (media, legislation). TPAR’s act of kindness was really an Evolutionary act of resistance. We need more of that.

    Revolution = revolving in a circle, winding up in the same place.

    Evolution = the enlightened, progressive movement of a species.

  • Rich Arte

    since everyone’s so generous with their props, shoutout to billy x for bringin out the dictionary to drop definitions, and “first time commenters”…commenting. And one more shoutout to billy for doin a 180 with this post.

  • Ryan

    KILL WHITEY!!!!!!



  • Around and Around

    Real good drop, and much more real talk going on in this thread, forget the ‘CAP LOCK CLICK’

    -Not only does TPAR’s actions teach shorty right from wrong, but also teaches him that he needs to be active in his own situation, and he doesn’t have to just sit on the curb and accept it.