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When It All Falls Down…

I use the title above to document my series of drops regarding the Roc-A-Fella Records dynasty and it’s subsequent downfall. Whether we realized or not, but this isn’t so much the G-unit era of rap music in as much as it’s the extended demise of one of Hip-Hop’s greatest success stories. Roc-A-Fella Records which was founded by Jay-Z, Damon Dash(t.r.), and Kareem Burke was the most influential brand ever in the business of promoting rap music. The could fill an arena with artists from their label only. Jay-Z, Bleek, Sigel, Freeway, KanYe, Cam’Ron and the Diplomats were totally poised to take over the music entertainment industry and then the gravity of ego made the wheels fall off. There’s no doubt in mind that if Jay-Z and Cam’Ron had been cool there would be no oxygen in rap music left for NaS or Fifty Cent to breathe. Speaking of breathing, Fabolous would have been signed to the Roc on G.P. I’m talking about invincibility.

Instead we see that Jay-Z, Dame and Cam’Ron are all human and ultimately flawed. Even with Jay-Z’s tremendous success in recent years what is obvious is that he elected to cash out early. The millions from the sale of Roc-A-Wear and his various “ownership” arrangements are still just dividends from the capital that was invested over a decade ago. In a short while the residuals will dwindle and the only thing that will remain will be Dame Dash’s bitterness. I can’t totally blame him one way or the other, but to compare Dash with Diddy; at least Diddy could dance if he had to. Let me give Dash some credit though. He did sign up O.D.B. after his last stint in rehab.

When I spoke about O.D.B. last week someone said that Dirty wasn’t great because he was a drug addict and a criminal. I will admit now that was the first comment ever on this website that has hurt my feelings. I just realized then at that very moment this rap shit was really truly dead. I don’t know who that dude was but he reminded me how misunderstood people are about the ways an addiction can steal a genius from you. How many of you have ever been addicted to something? If you are an American then you definitely addicted to something. No matter who you are. Cocaine, sex, television, weed, sugar, pr0n, whatever. All addictions transform the addict and shape their personality. Some addictions transform those that come in contact with the addicts. It isn’t fun and often it’s dehumanizing. I say this from my experience on both sides of the spectrum. I was transformed and my life was forever changed.

What do you think about all the people that would have bought drugs from Jay-Z had he been a drug dealer that earned enough money to start a record label with his earnings? That sounds like a lot of addicts to me. Considering the fact that he would not only have needed to raise the money to start recording music, but also enough money to shelter the illegal money. I assume we all understand that in order to launder money it will cost you a shitload of money. You have to pay lawyers and accountants and other crooks to move your cash around like a shell game. And if you’re a Black man for every hundred bucks that gets put inside Dante’s fourth circle you might get only fifty bucks in return. This means that there should be a lot of addicted persons left in the wake of Jay-Z’s ascension to the pinnacle of the rap music pantheon. What if all these people filed a class action lawsuit against Jay-Z for the damages caused by drug addiction? That would be the addicts, their parents, their children, their families and friends, their employers and maybe even their neighbors. All of a sudden Jay-Z’s billions don’t seem all that much.

In New York State we have a law enacted that prevents convicted criminals from profiteering off crimes they have committed. Although Jay-Z has never been convicted for anything, let alone even indicted for jaywalking, I don’t know what these people could use as the basis for their lawsuit other than say… His entire discography. This could be pretty interesting since there are many artists that claim to have occupied a space on the avenues where narcotics distribution prevails. This could effectively end the notion of rappers who use the drug trade to supplement their album sales. The only problem with this plan is that it requires Blacks to be proactive socially progressive trendsetters. We all know that those aren’t the trends that Blacks are interested in starting. Instead I can imagine that there is some Black kid somewhere starting a new dance right now called ‘The Drug Addict’.

Roc-A-Fella y’all

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