Six Degrees Of Sylvia Rhone…

s_rhone

^ “Isn’t she lovely?” – (c) Stevie Wonder

I haven’t done too much writing this past weekend not because it was a holiday or becasue my check from Harris Publishing came in and I have been in an alcoholic x THC influenced stupor, but because I have been trying to process the Charles Hamilton vs. Briana Latrise debacle for its overall effect on Hip-Hop as we know it.

Firstly, it was a shot heard ’round the internets, that finally after so many hardbody female artists like MC Lyte, Lin Que, Latifah, Rah Digga, Lady of Rage and all those lesbian chicks on the Miss Rap Supreme show we now see a female emcee who is will to strike pre-emptively. This was no Real Roxanne episode where a chick was passed around the entire crew from Full Force to U.T.F.O. (and possibly Force MD’s – uggh) before she had the nerve to speak her mind.

Briana Latrise is the resultant of years of rap music being specifically anti-woman. Nevermind the fact that there have been women who still managed to work in this environment. Plenty of women go to work in offices and other places where the instances of sexual and racial harassment are abundant. Rap music was in the forefront of artistic misogyny. You can’t deny this either. N.W.A. and Too $hort happen to just pop up in my brain, but if you do the math I’m sure you will discover that the word bitch was used most frequently from 1990 onward.

Here’s the freaky coincidence…

The explosion of misogynistic music and conversely music videos which promoted the music’s lifestyle directly parallels the ascendancy and prominence of African American female executives in the entertainment industry. You might almost surmise that Black women in executive positions love to see images of prostrated Black women as much, if not more than anyone else. Why else would all the degrading images and content be underwritten, created and promoted by these executives. It’s almost as if they were trying to develop a permanent underclass mentality for females of color.

The tsunami doesn’t trap all the women of color underwater, but the ones that escape certainly don’t ring the alarm for the ones coming up either. Briana Latrise’s reactionary punch to Charles Hamilton’s jaw was about their personal relationship as much as it was about her frustrations at being marginalized as an artist. Briana won’t be on the cover of Vibe anytime soon even if she poses butter ass nekkid like Ciara and Keisha Cole have done. Briana’s options haven’t been obfuscated by the ‘Man’. Briana has been pigeonholed by the woMan.

The more women are inducted into positions of influence and power the less we are seeing them find their voices as artists. That wouldn’t be such a bad thing though if the art in general reflected more respect for women overall, but the opposite is the case. More women execs has equaled less women artists plus more misogynists. What part of the game is this? Combine that with the knowledge that prison culture is also promoted as the ideal for manhood and I would have to start raising an eyebrow at women of color holding executive positions in the entertainment industry.

I should prA’li watch my step around here since I don’t want my XXL checks getting to my mailbox several months late again but I’m just wondering why no one else is concerned about the silence that has come from the Rihanna supporters? Here’s why you haven’t heard a peep. The real life pecking order inside of the urban entertainment industry looks something like this. White man > white women > Black women > Asians (primarily Filipino) > the Mexican diaspora (P.R., Cuban, D.R., Colombia) > ghey Black men > office furniture (Herman Miller chairs) > Black men.

So as long as Black men are talking shit about Black women and catching a bad one to the jaw bone everyone in Hip-Hop is satisfied.

  • http://colby-sempek.com Ghost

    Uhh…Pierzy?

  • http://colby-sempek.com Ghost

    Interesting points DP. Do you think that this has become (since the conception/conglomeration of the Sugar Hill Gang) just another archetypal American structure where certain people take positions in certain classes/castes in order to perpetuate their class/caste and, by default, perpetuate those that suffer? (See rich upper class white men fucking over poor middle/low class white/black blue collar drones [auto industry])

  • http://colby-sempek.com Ghost

    (or, see our entire fucking economy…)

  • kid video

    I’m with you Ghost…

    Who’s going to complain about “girlfriend” getting her money.

  • Dallas Penn

    Ghost,
    Great points…

    1) typing in Pierzy

    2) relating cRap music to the entire system of capitalism

    I remember that a few months ago (or was it last year) all kinds of rappers were thrown under the bus for the statements made by Don Imus as if the problem was coming from the rappers use of slanguage and not from the socio-economic system we ALL play a role in.

    What was the most telling moment to me was that Debra Lee(B.E.T.), Sylvia Rhone(Universal) and even Danyel Smith were not looked upon as culpable parties. Meanwhile, these folks are at the highest echelon of image creation.

  • http://whoodywah.com Ahaha

    yo
    your prA’li paypalshit ain’t working.

  • http://colby-sempek.com Ghost

    @ DP

    Same old song, I suppose, of nit-picking a few perps than looking at the big picture, yeah? The “have your cake and eat it too” seems to play a role in all of this as well, which, scarily, seems more organic than intentional. On a lighter note…word to Aaron McGruder’s depiction of the B.E.T. fat cats…fucking hilarious (and true!).

    Didn’t David Banner, in one of his more eloquent sound bytes, say something like “Hip-hop is sick, because America is sick”?

    Amen brother…

  • latino heat

    damn DP, you had something real to say and it couldn’t wait till the morning huh? i’ve never seen a blog posted this late on this site.
    all very good points though, i’d never really thought about any of this before. when you think of the people in power at record labels and such you just think of the T.I’s and not any type of minority females in such high positions of power.

    on a lighter note though, the best naked Vibe cover ever was Toni Braxton. word to Ras Kass. “some things make you happy just to be alive, like seeing Toni Braxton naked on the cover of the Vibe”.

  • Pierzy

    What up – here’s my late pass…

    DP, I once heard someone that had knowledge of the “industry” say that it’s actually no coincidence at all – these powerful women know what sells and, while they are all about personal and female empowerment, they are even more focused on business and, as a result, would put out music that they might not agree with and probably wouldn’t listen to or buy themselves, but that they were sure would sell.

    I don’t know if I necessarily agree but that’s a theory…

  • Chris Cash

    But who wants Oprah to run Interscope?

  • http://myspace.com/federalranga Federal Ranga

    Oprah can suck one. Real Talk.

  • PARIS PERSHUN

    I’LL FUCK!!!!

    (LEANS BACK AND TURNS “TRIALS AND TRIBULATIONS” WAY WAY WAY WYA WYA WYA WAY WAY WAY WAY WAY WAY THE FUCK UP)

  • General

    First off, you know women never stick together…First chance they get the will stab another woman in the back to get ahead while talkin shit about how fat or horrible the other woman’s outfit is.

    I know a lot of this has to do with society and how hard it is to get ahead for anyone, but the white man so everyone else will do whatever it takes to get ahead, even if that means selling out your principles…

    Its a damn shame, but that’s the America we live in…”God Bless America and no one else”-Chris Rock

  • No Mames Buey

    only say the Mexican diaspora, if you also refer to the German diaspora, Nigerian diaspora, & Chinese diaspora

  • geico lizard

    “You might almost surmise that Black women in executive positions love to see images of prostrated Black women as much, if not more than anyone else.”

    ^
    Co-sign. Most of these women on top are lesbians thats why they talk so much shit about not needing a man. Lesbians like naked women as much as men do. Oprahs favorite rap video is “Tip Drill”

  • geico lizard

    If women ALWAYS supported other women then Katie Courics ratings wouldnt be in the toilet and the WNBA would be seen by more than 7 people. Women just like to blame men for any failures they have in business instead of taking responsibility for failing. Oprah doesnt have a problem getting chicks to tune in and keep her rich.

  • $ykotic

    Smooth.

    After Jean Grae said she was retiring I stopped checking for female mcs.

    Don’t you guys have a female boss @ XXL now?

    • http://tonygrands.blogspot.com Tony Grand$

      Lol @ $yk

      Yeah, they do. & her first day on the job, she censored every fucking curse word, until cats starting noticing. Now, it only does it when the word “r@p3″ shows up.

      Watch…..rape.

      Women are funny & I’ve never trusted them. Maybe its because they spend so much time transforming into different people. Make-up, fake eyes, fake nails, too tight clothes that hide the true shape of the bodies, fake hair; by the time they’re done with all that transormation, they don’t even know WHO they are anymore.

      That’s why they carry mirrors. They often forget who they were @ that moment.

      • http://tonygrands.blogspot.com Tony Grand$

        Oh.

        I guess I was wrong about the “rape” thing, ha.

      • $ykotic

        “That’s why they carry mirrors. They often forget who they were @ that moment.”

        LOL I need this one! whooooo!

      • BIGNAT

        @ grand thats why women have issues of trust with men. let me get the ones you missed the wonderbra, fake tits and fake butts. like i don’t know why anyone would like that chick from flavor of love new york. that bitch look like a drag queen for real

        • http://www.myspace.com/emcdlthemusicprofile EmCDL

          Fake butts???? Say it ain’t so! I thought that shit was a myth…who in their right ming would get implants in their butt??? I’m sorry females but if ya mama didn’t have it then you won’t either LOL

        • http://tonygrands.blogspot.com Tony Grand$

          Real talk though, on some levels I sympathize with Black women. If you get technical, they’ve hard a pretty rough time over the past 300-400 years. & in a lot of instances still to this day, men make shit really hard on women.

          Usually starting with some fucked-up father figure, right on through to a superDouche, abusive boyfriend turned babydaddy, & if she’s lucky, she finds some man that won’t kill her for not scrambling his eggs hard enough. Then, her daughter grows up in this environment & the cycle continues.

          I’m not even going to go in on their right (not) to vote & being raped by slave masters & share croppers.

          So, as in OJ’s case, I may not agree, but I understand. They have no choice but to be cutthroat.

        • $ykotic

          “So, as in OJ’s case, I may not agree, but I understand. They have no choice but to be cutthroat.”

          That one flew over their heads!

          2 for 2!

        • http://tonygrands.blogspot.com Tony Grand$

          Ha!

          Feels good to be appreciated [||]….

  • DazzOne

    If it can be said that women don’t stick together, then that goes double for black women. And the description of the pecking order you gave DP is so sad, and so true. But that is everywhere, especially in the regular working class. The sickness of America, racism, classicism, and misogyny, hip-hop was supposed to fix that we thought in the ’80s. But all that happened was, we adopted that pathology, because unfortunately, our darker compulsions sell.

  • DazzOne

    And it’s so organic and institutionalized, it won’t ever stop. Try talking about this with the average black man or woman on the street. Either we’ve given up hope, or just said ‘fuck it’. Look at how artist don’t aspire to be the next Nas, or sound brilliant in a song. It doesn’t sell. Need proof of the end of the world/hip-hop? Look no further than this months cover.

    It won’t ever change, we have grown too complacent.

  • BIGNAT

    White man > white women > Black women > Asians (primarily Filipino) > the Mexican diaspora (P.R., Cuban, D.R., Colombia) > ghey Black men > office furniture (Herman Miller chairs) > Black men.

    you have to switch the furniture with pets like mini poodles and shit like that.

  • SOUTHSIDE A-TOWN

    this was a good post. you should blog more on topics like this (real shit). cuz kids these days aint picking up no books & wont be no time soon. since they spend majority of their times on the nets put some real life shit in their face and make em wake up man. cuz it aint getting no better out here, we need to hear it wherever we can.

  • OG Matt Herbz

    White Niggaz > White Men

  • OG Matt Herbz

    White Niggaz > White Men

    –OG Matt Herbz–

  • http://www.myspace.com/onemanprod oneman Beats

    its hard to get a buzz for yourself as a new artist. but she got one and wasnt looking for it lol. Charles career is not looking good and its still early.
    Trendz of Culture is back myspace.com/trendzofculture_3

  • jeff rhone

    Hi Ms. Rhone my name is jeffrey rhone and I was just wondering if you have any relatives in St. Louis ,Mo ?