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Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Through the Photographers Lens

Welcome to Through the Photographers Lens,

In this week’s post I thought I would address some questions of my own. Do people know or even understand the differences between Hip-hop and Rap? Do People understand the difference between the culture and art form versus, as many rappers call it “the Hustle?”

As I sat in my study reviewing notes from past interviews with Artists within the hip-hop community, I began to notice subtle differences in the answers to my questions, the passion that drives the writing and even the level of respect in the language used to express thought. I’d come to the conclusion that there are some subtle differences that when looked at as a whole they form a sharp separating line between the two factions of the art form. Differences that are not unlike the differences between “Guy’s” and “Men” or the differences between “Girl’s” and “Women”. One you have respect for and honor in the things you do to recognize each for what they are and one you have to just deal with.

In my conversations with Hip-Hop artists, the conversations are very deep and detailed, delving into politics and the development of the culture. Many want to build whole Hip-Hop communities that are completely self –sufficient and rely strictly on the culture and the craftsmanship of its members to support itself and each other through craft. Purchasing land and building homes and businesses that ultimately help further the cause of the culture. Innovation in mind and thinking to bring about growth and cultural maturity to make Hip-Hop a viable and recognizable nation. Humility, strength, honor (of sorts) and even a belief in one uncreated creator with many different names only separated by language and locality but unified by the common cause. Further the Hip-Hop nation and culture!

In my conversations with some of the rappers I have interviewed the answers because very limited and dare I say repetitive. Diamonds, clothes, cars, sociopathic behavioral patterns, elicit narcotic use and of course misogyny! Lyrical weakness in the craft is what many complain about. A total lack of content. There are many songs to choose from in fact if you are reading this you are more than likely humming the lyrics to one of those songs in your head and nodding knowingly. In a recent tweet I posted the question “If everyone is striving to be individual then what is normal”; well I found they answer in my research. Individuality in Rap music has become the new millennium” Monkey Trap!” Lots of shiny objects to capture the attention and even lure it away from the lack of truth, depth and fact that Rappers seem to be missing today. Where have all the true lyricists gone and why are they not at the forefront of this industry?

I don’t believe Hip-Hop Culture is dead at all but I do believe that it has been overshadowed but the looming, dark marketing campaign that is Rap Music.

What are your thoughts?

Rahim Baskett


MindSoulVision Photography




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