“Hip hop is definitely not what it used to be, which was creative, original music”.-Missy Elliot
Many years ago hip hop was not just a music but spiritual movement of the blacks, where one cannot just call it a trend. These days hip hop is predominantly a youth culture, which makes it more to be about girls, drugs and money, where else in the days of Lauryn hill and Erykah Badu (to name a few) it was to motivate and inspire.
Great rap must have all kinds of unresolved layers that you don’t figure out the first time you listen to it. It has to leave startle knocking sounds in your head that won’t make sense till the fifth or sixth time through. The reason is to challenge you.
Its quiet different if we were to compare SA Hip hop to USA Hip hop because in SA trap hip hop is dominating, it’s all about fun and making a hit that will be played in a club but in US what is dominant is the culture of it and where it is coming from and going.
“I’m into hip hop that speaks substance into my life, in the sense of; I can gain and take away something from it. I’m into hip hop that teaches but also that generally make me feel better in any sense. E.g. J Cole, Kendrick lamar type of hip hop it’s about teaching content about black empowerment and Drake, Big Sean type of hip hop it’s a mainstream which can make me dance and bares substance, and evokes feelings and I can jam too.”- PBK Hip hop artist.
“It’s not educating and motivating like it used to be, in SA it’s all about whose making a lot of money and club banging” added Goon Mahlangu (photographer at Shh Magazine).
“Hip hop is not something we do, it’s something we live. It’s the way we dress, the way we talk…everybody bobbing to the same beat. It’s a culture. Top 10 or Top 40 can’t dictate that. They can only dictate what’s marketable”. – Erykah Badu
What is important is that hip hop is the most vibrant and cultural art you will ever come across. It’s improving lyrically and the lifestyle keeps getting bigger and better. It’s the genre where one can express themselves in so many different ways.
“Hip hop will continue to grow, people will continue loving hip hop. The future of it is brighter. From 808’s to those heartfelt piano keys, hip hop grows in me every day. I’m not picky on what type of hip hop I like because when it gets me it gets me, now that’s something no one can really explain”.- Max Rose Hip hop artist.
Listen to Interview Below:
What’s clear to see is that Hip Hop culture is no more Exclusive to just America, and that South Africa has pioneered it’s own culture along the same lines as the American culture. Africans need no longer look outside of Africa for influence and certainly gone are the days where people would say, he thinks he is American when referring to a Hip Hop head because even in America it has evolved.