If you go on the street or ask homies or even go online there is one striking similarity to how people perceive Hip Hop music now.
That is “This beat is dope, but THIS SHIT IS WACK!” Its time to step up your bars for 2015 and beyond…cause our fans are getting disillusioned.
Bars Are On The Decline
I remember a few weeks ago I saw this article posted on Facebook showing that the majority of music lyrics…especially Hip Hop music has been going down for years
Just check out this chart showing some of the top performing artist’s in Hip Hop and where their lyrics rank based on reading level
Eminem scored the highest (which is not saying much) coming in at almost a 4th grade reading level!
Now I know what you might be saying “But Trav, people want to be entertained, they don’t want a college level course listening to music!”
Point taken, but there is still an undeniable fact that with the decrease in level of lyrics, we have more and more disillusionment by our fans. Why is that happening?
Balance Is Key: Candy vs Soul Food
Hip Hop started out in the parks in the early 1970s, back then the DJ was the main guy and the emcee was the side act. Back then it was an era of block parties, unity and bringing people together to have fun. As the 70’s progressed and the 1980s came into the picture with Reaganomics and the mass explosion of the crack epidemic, people needed to make sense of this as well as to communicate it to the wider world, who probably wasn’t aware what was going on in the inner-city.
That’s when you enter “The Message” by Grandmaster Flash and the Furious Five:
Arguably one of the realist songs ever made and still gives me chills listening to it this day. With that catchy beat that people could dance to, sure you could easily put some Kurtis Blow type lyrics on it and have fun, but there was plenty of that out at that moment, people needed this Soul Food!
That’s the balance we need today – Candy vs Soul Food. Each has it’s time and place, but neither should outweigh the other.
What Needs Done ASAP
We really need to go back to the essence and bring back some of that social commentary that made our genre great. There’s so much going on right now in the world that needs addressed through music. You as a rapper can and always do touch people with your lyrics! DO NOT squander that gift only making candy coated tracks.
If you are interested in learning more on this subject stay tuned for the next couple posts I’ll be doing, as a producer it is MY JOB and MY RESPONSIBILITY to help you be the best rapper you can be, not just selling beats to you, but actually helping you craft better music and change this world for the better!