Hip-hop is dead, right? Well now there’s a post over at SoulBounce.com that is beginning to make the rounds on the internets, detailing the top 25 things that killed off not just hip-hop, but urban music in general. In these lean times in the traditional media business, I try to keep a relatively positive disposition on things, wake up with a smile and lay down with one. But seriously, shit is all fucking fucked the fuck up at this point that it’s becoming damn near impossible to feel good about the direction things are moving for urban music. Seriously, folks are jumping ship like rap was the fucking Titanic or something. In short order, here’s the list of 25 things that are sinking the ship, with my own little spin on them. Go to Soulbounce.com to read the original post and the author’s reasonings.
1) The End of the “Event” Album- How about the end of the album, period?
2) Big Name Hip Hop Producers- see: Flo Rida’s 2nd single, “Elevator,” produced by Timbaland
3) Deaths of The Notorious B.I.G. & 2Pac- see: every rapper post Biggie and pac
4) “Neo-Soul”- This shit still exists? I thought even coffee shop fag artists were now selling their ass for some BET play
5) Reality TV- Diddy’s biggest acts since Biggie come on the strength of a reality tv show. Need i say more.
6) Lazy A&R Departments- these guys are fucking useless. Every one of them needs a club banger, but something that can play on the radio, that is sort of ballady, but with a hip-hop feel, that can also play in the street, that can get a lot of burn on mixtapes, and cross over to top40 radio at the same time, as well as be good enough for T-Pain or Akon to feature on.
7) Scarface and The Untouchables- see: every episode of MTV Cribs
8) Thugs- i don’t agree with them being on the list. You need these guys to run up in the TIs office once you get dropped from the label
9) Crime- need this too, what else are people going to rap about? Something positive? get real.
10) Ringtones- depends on what you’re downloading, I guess. My ringtone is Wu-tang’s “C.R.E.A.M.” Is that kind of ringtone rap bad? I don’t think so. We all have choices, nobody’s saying you gotta download some Soulja Boy shit and put it on your phone.
11) Lack of Music Programs in Schools- Eh, i don’t know the statistics on this. But i do know quite a few kids who have put together full albums with their classmates and whatnot in their school’s recording studios. I didn’t have that growing up.
12) BET- You mean to tell me watching “Rip The Runway ’08″ didn’t make you feel better about the direction urban music is heading in? Shame on you.
13) The Radio- don’t even own one anymore. Radio is irrelevant in the internet era.
14) Spineless Club DJs- cosign. Club DJs are horrible these days. Truly horrid.
15) Mainstream Hip Hop Publications- ummm….
16) Bloggers- blogging is the new rapping. Unfortunately most people who blog about urban music are like those who rap…. they have no real writing skill, and just post gossip items about nothing. And most rappers have no real writing skill either and rap about nothing, so you see the correlation, right?
17) Youtube & Myspace- a vast wasteland of media.
18) Singing Rappers, Acting Rappers & Rapping Athletes- I don’t agree with this one. People, particularly creative folks, shouldn’t be boxed in to doing one thing. If an athlete wants to rap, then fine. If an actor wants to rap, fine. But at least do something mildly amusing or keep the shit to yourself. That’s my advice.
19) The End of Real Singing Groups- when were singing groups every really real? It’s show business, people.
20) “Kanyitis”- supposedly this is when someone says something in front of a camera just to have their WTF? moment. Yeah, that’s wack.
21) Death of Aaliyah- I think her passing was a loss, and she was one of urban music’s most talented people, but I don’t know if it created a real void in the marketplace to the point where we have bad knockoff Aaliyah’s out there. Sure there’s a few, but it’s not that serious.
22) Money- we gotta eat, right?
23) Products & Brands- isn’t this what America is? A bunch of products and brands? Art has been co-opted to sell people shit, bottom line.
24) People That Aren’t in Any Way Associated with Music- yes, hangers-on in the music biz are completely useless.
25) Teenagers- yes kids are pretty stupid these days. They’re also pretty smart, depending on how you look at the situation. If anything, I think teenagers are picking and choosing exactly what it is they want to be into right now, not being dictated to, for a change. That’s why the game is so messed up, because the kids have tuned out. They’re into what they’re into, and the industry just doesn’t have a clue.