So What If The Internet Is Going Nuts…

I agree with something Gooch said in his “King of the Internet” post.

Artists who have yet to embrace the online space are pretty much dinosaurs. On the flip side, MCs who solely rely on the web got it wrong. Per Gooch, up-and-coming MCs now think they’re sure to blow up if their music is featured on nahright. With all due respect to Eskay, that’s a pretty myopic way of thinking. No MC has ever blown up off the blogs alone.

The truth is internet buzz has yet to translate into sales. Sure, Soulja Boy struck platinum, but the web constituted only a portion of his hype, not the end all be all. In addition to countless viral videos, SB had a strong TV and radio presence. His record wasn’t only getting views online, it was also all over video countdowns. “Crank That” also garnered plenty of spins-even landing atop Billboard’s singles charts for seven non-consecutive weeks. All those elements put together helped SB reach a deafening buzz. When it was all said and done, everybody in elementary schools and retirement homes knew who he was. These new kids, not so much.

I doubt I can walk to a random “urban kid,” even one of them skaterboard-ish looking ones and say, “Hey, how about that Jay Electronica?” Chances are they don’t know who blog fixtures like Jay, U-N-I or Donny Goines are. The web’s a great tool, but it ain’t enough. Look at what XXL’s Freshmen 10 cover did for the featured MCs. It helped them get recognition beyound computer screens. Some would argue that the internets are now the streets- the artist’s breeding ground and the place where we get our music first.

The thing is, the mixtape- the street’s premier platform for an artist to gain recognition- seems to have connected in ways the internet has yet to. We knew who Fabolous was when all he did was appear on mixtapes. We knew who 50 Cent was. We even knew Papoose and Uncle Murda. The same thing applies down south. Young Jeezy is just one of many southern MCs who spark a heavy buzz from working the mixtape circuit. Come to think about it, minus Soulja Boy, the last new artist to be successful, Plies, is a product of the streets, not the net. But The Real Testament is already two years old and the game has definitely gone more digital since then. Maybe the web has replaced the street as the official breeding ground. I guess we’ll find out when one of our Freshmen 10 finally drops an LP.-Jackpot

  • Arrogant_Al

    I doubt I can walk to a random “urban kid,” even one of them skaterboard-ish looking ones and say, “Hey, how about that Jay Electronica?” Chances are they don’t know who blog fixtures like Jay, U-N-I or Donny Goines are.

    ^ you damn right lol….i try to tell ppl this, these teens from the projects and lower class communities don’t know half these guys that be poppin on the net, they let alone can name you a hip-hop site….everybody doesn’t know about XXL, Allhiphop, Nahright, and Hip-hopDx.

    yeah they know about myspace and facebook and possibly youtube but that’s as far as it go for some of them.

    im like the 25% that came from a lower class community that know about those sites and those artists…..the other 75% is watching BET or outside 24/7 smoking something bush wouldn’t even mess with.

    all i can do is spread the word, but i hate niggas so i ain’t putting em on to nothing…..they too stuck on wayne, plies, and soulja “ran up in my crib,, can i live?” boy.

  • Juice Black

    No doubt, I pretty much agree..

  • Big Will

    “I guess we’ll find out when one of our Freshmen 10 finally drops an LP”

    WHAT ABOUT WACK ASS ACE HOOD ALBUM??? THAT SHIT BEEN OUT!!! LMAO

  • http://www.ronmexicocity.com ron mexico

    and the church said “amen.”

    two words: charles hamilton

    • Avenger XL

      Two more words

      Milk Box material or what Charles hamilton is equal too.

  • Peru (Chicago)

    I think its quite possible XXL’s taste of lyrical ability has been water downed from the lack of strength in that category from the “Rappers” of recent years. I say that to say this, Hamilton was on the Freshmen 10…this nigga is NOT anything special at all. He is a very average lyricist in my opinion. In my opinion mutha fucka!!!

    • Stevie B

      Its about time somebody said Im still waiting for this kid to spit 1 hot bar same thing goes for asher roth

  • http://www.myspace.com/someloveandsomehate Slash

    co-sign Peru (Chicago).

    CH was the first person that came to mind when I saw the headline for this blog. I didn’t even have to read it to agree (but i did read it and now i agree 100x more).

    I’ve listened to his music to try and give him a fair shot but I just can’t rock with it. He’s got an okay flow sometimes and the beats are cool but overall he is so-so at best.

    The test is whether people would want to put effort into listening to your music when it’s more than a hyperlink away.

  • http://www.xxlmag.com jackpot

    Arrogant Al, you right. I tend to mention these sites to people in the industry and always expect them to know what I’m talking about. I’m actually surprised when folks don’t know about it.

  • THAT DUDE

    I couldn’t agree with you more!
    Fools will tell you they rhyme but aren’t even known or respected where they come from cuz they on the computer all damn day.
    Unless folk know your work already the internet isn’t gonna do it for you.
    To all artists who can I would advise starting a web-site and lay off the myspace.

    • Avenger XL

      What if where you come from has no scene or place to perform? What if it is some white suburban spot that listens to country all day? I guess you should just move to NY or find a hood so you can start rapping. Give the Net time and shit will evolve.

  • $ykotic

    Even with the ‘net I don’t even know who half these rookies are.

    I say go do a show or a school and get your buzz on. Even get a STREET TEAM(remember that?) Blast the block with stickers and posters.

    Then perhaps IF YOU ARE GOOD, the fanatics will spread the word for a per se ESKAY to co-sign you.

  • AVENGER XL

    But the net at least affords artists a chance to get the ears they probably couldn’t even get with a street tape anyway. i.e. most of the cat’s popping on the web wouldn’t pop in the hood anyway. Let’s look at it, OK everybody favorite case study for the web is soulja boy which is just stupid yeah he used the web but it just translated to sales because he speaks the language and he looks like them, he is safe to the hood minded cat. He made easy to digest dance music. Now take a Definitive Jux cd to your local hood vender or the so called streets and you will get a scene like the chappalle show barber shop skit (Everybody saying yo what’s that shit shut the f up).
    I don’t say that to say the hood is closed minded I am just saying your average Gucci Mane fan isn’t checking for Chino XL on most days and vice versa. The web is a good place to get the college graduate/technologically saavy customer and for the more creative types who really market their shit it is great.

    The hood is so random and the mixtape game doesn’t exist everywhere on a major level like in the big cities. So what are small labels to do? Wait onbias publications and radio station who are paid to big up artists to give them a break? As the world gets more internet saavy more music will be discovered and sold this way but you still have to market and make moves. The reason you don’t see more people making money is because they are not working the web or the streets. It’s all about niche marketing no matter your avenue.

  • http://www.ronmexicocity.com Ron Mexico

    yeah, mane. i don’t think jackpot is discrediting one or the other here. it’s not streets vs. web.

    it’s streets AND web.

    plane need two wings to fly.

    • Arrogant_Al

      your absolutely right ron

  • macdatruest

    gRASSROOTS/dIGITAL dont steal my catchphrase…

  • Casey

    The streets alone don’t do it either. Look at Papoose’s “career.”

  • louie mo

    good fuckin read …….. now that’s the shit i talkin about……. even though i’m on the net at work and shit (casue my computer is broke and …… fuck it …. a nigga is broke)i usually get my mixtapes from the mom and pop’s store…….