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Hidden Hip-Hop
Most people in today’s society believe that all hip-hop and rap is about making money, getting drunk and high, and or abusing women. This is so far off base for many artists producing music in this day and age. Lots of the music I listen to is very positive and actually promotes making good decisions and achieving success through working hard. I know, this may seem hard to believe, but not all black people slap hoes and get money; although today’s media does make it seem like that.
One of my favorite artists is Sol. For me Sol’s music has a distinct and almost overwhelming tone of happiness when I listen to it. In lots of his music he talks about being positive in life even when we are struggling to get through. Here are some of his lyrics…
But if you throw stones
Nobody floats
Negativity brings nothing but evil
That’s why I paint the perfect vision
With the team that I built
These lyrics are from the song that he wrote called Paint. When he says “if we throw stones nobody floats” he is basically stating that when people are negative then nobody in their life including themselves will succeed. The next three lines (“negativity brings nothing but evil that’s why I paint the perfect vision with the team that I built”) is saying that nothing good comes from evil; and that each and every one of us should surround ourselves with people that make us happy. By doing this we can achieve success.
Another artist that is making music in today’s society is Kai Straw. He has some very interesting views of the world and chooses to share his points through music. Here are some of his lyrics…
Then I see all these women wearing make up for the sake of
perfecting the face that appears when they wake up
and I wonder what it'd be like to live as a girl
where your face isn't good enough to show to the world
it's odd, a woman's life is a fashion show
and a guy's not a guy unless he's smashing those
and they say, we're all free in most ways
but what most don't calculate
is that we're slaves mostly to culture
giving ulcers to a kid who likes pink

These are just a few lines from his song called Slaughterhouse. All the way through the song he talks about society and how many of us are forced to conform to others opinions and values within a given culture. He used many examples throughout the song such as, “then I see all these women wearing make up for the sake of perfecting the face that appears when they wake up.” Many girls truly do wake up and put on makeup every day before leaving the house. It is sad to say but they aren’t happy with what they see when they look in the mirror. I think what he is trying to achieve with this song is acceptance among everyone. I mean why should a girl have to cover up what she really looks like? Instead of everyone being so concerned with looks, why can’t we realize the beauty that comes from people’s morals, personality, and values? Why should a guy have to like the color blue and be the “toughest kid ever?” Why do we all feel the need to convert to how we think society wants us to live? I truly hope this song can help people not scared to show what their true passions really are, and accept others for what they are; I know it has for me.

The point I am trying to make by showing these songs is that not all rap/hip-hop is the same. Not all of it has extremely offensive language, half naked girls in music videos, or talks about some guy with twenty-twos on his Bentley. There are many more artists than the ones that I have shared with you today that make songs similar. When I think of hip-hop many different things pop into my head. This is what makes it such an awesome music genre. It can bring me to happiness when I am sad or make me look at life in a new perspective. Hip-hop has its positives and negatives just as life does. We can choose to see the light or choose to look into the darkness. Just remember that not all hip-hop is in that darkness, but rather it is shining brightly.




Mozi Gerber



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