Rap Music Moves Back Into Mom’s Basement…
As I pored over the news that Koch Records was folding itself into its parent company and moving their operations out to the parent company's offices in Long Island it kind of reminded me of the time I moved back into my mom's basement.
I was dating a beautiful and oh so sexy Cuban chick and living in her apartment. I had left my flat in Corona because it was a piece of crap. It was a bachelor pad with all the prerequisite shit that bachelors keep around. Pr0n mags were strewn about while Garcia y Vegas guts filled the garbage can. My rap cassettes were everywhere and the smell of thrice worn gym socks filled the apartment.
None of that shit was going down at my ladies' crib. Her shit was neat and organized and it always smelled like something good was cooking. The bathroom was hell'a clean too. This was like moving from the crib in 'Good Times' to the penthouse apartment in 'Diff'rent Strokes'. Like any smart chick though she had no longer had time for a nigga that only wants to play video games and get high.
It felt kind of weird to end up back at my parent's house at 28yrs old especially since I told them to go to hell when I was 18. My mom and dad acted like the past was in the past. Well, my mom did. My dad let me know how much of a shitbag I had been during my teenage years. I no longer smoked blunts as a hobby in deference to my parents who didn't care for that type of shit anyhoo.
Eventually, I saved up enough money to move out again but this time I bought myself a co-op apartment in a building that has underground parking and an indoor pool. I invited my parents over to help me paint before I bought my furniture and the what not. It felt good to get back out on my own especially since I did it the right way this time. So how do I connect my life to the travails of Koch Records and rap music in general?
Koch was a fledgling label that has a talented roster of artists but they needed some direction. Koch was also irreverent. Remember the incident of Cam'Ron taunting 50 Cent using his government name? That was done in the office of the general manager of Koch. There was all of this moxie coming out of Koch because they recognized their young talent was special. But all it took was a few under-performing albums for Koch to question their movement.
The bottom line has never been as scrutinized as it is now in this economic climate. There is no time to develop artists and cultivate fanbases. If an artist doesn't come in the door with a million MySpace views how likely do you think his project will be considered for release? Not likely should be your answer. It is strange to me that an artist that is attempting to rise through the ranks is also being saddled with the responsibility of doing A & R work as well. Jim Jones homey Dame Dash > A & R than almost anyone else. Check the stats on that one.
Koch isn't the only outfit that will going back to their parents for stability. Koch just might be the smartest in saving their money for releasing projects and not just paying for excess staff and midtown Manhattan office space.