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Ca$hing Out: Why Does Hip-Hop Produce So Many One-Hit Wonders?

Posted by Yoh on 11/14/12 | Filed under Top Stories, Opinion, Yoh Issues
Let’s be blunt, recycle bins are full with poor mirrored attempts at the current “it” sound and struggling mediocrity. Despite the unarguable fact that hip-hop is in a great era, bringing forth prospects worthy of wielding torches leading us out of the dark ages, there is still much left to be done. The reality is that legends of yester-years will not be around forever; while some are still able to not be overshadowed by former glory, others are already losing their shyne.

Some have left us music that will continue to inspire far beyond their last breath, leaving vast discographies with rubies and gems that will echo through my children’s generation. You may only live once but music is immortal. Artists are in recording booths attempting to ride waves into a new tax bracket, into women that are descendants of Athena, into an estate with more rooms than the White House. Why are so many trying to be momentary rappers when you could be deemed an immoral artist?

One hit wonders and simplicity are hip-hop’s greatest attractive feature. Same way a callous youth is drawn to the easiest girl in the classroom, rap is the slut genre. Everyone wants to be in her, because it’s portrayed as easy. Not everyone can pick up a drum stick and be Travis Barker, but if you talk about butts in a whisper you’ll be deemed the new age Ying Yang Twins. Aren’t we just trying to cash in on our 15 minutes of fame like Cash Out, show why we hot like Mims, accumulate racks on racks like YC, and make the girls wobble like V.I.C?

What each of these guys have in common, besides closing out the B.E.T Awards, is that their careers in hip-hop have been seasonal. They were replaced before a blink of an eye, lost in a loop of obtaining fame and struggling to return to their very anti-climactic spot in the middle. Hip-Hop loves no one, unless you are prepared to bring something incredibly enchanting, you are at risk of suffering from the same faith.

This genre is a career choice, one that shouldn’t be devoted to charting tops but reaping the rewards of using creativity and honesty to reach the masses. That’s how you guarantee l-o-n-g-e-v-i-t-y. I could give you examples of the old, but I rather give you someone more current.

Macklemore is the poster child for independent artistry going in the right direction. He’s had a gradually climb to the top, progressing at every tier improving himself and his team. He didn’t need the major label machine to sell albums, the fans that he’s been growing with supported, which lead to adequate sales. His topics aren’t clichéd, he isn’t following any trends or attempting to gimmick his way into the cold dark-holes you people call hearts. Say what you will about the Seattle emcee, Wing$ is timeless.

Real hip-hop is a faux genre created in the minds of hip-hop elitist that can’t accept change, and people stuck in a 90’s state of mind. If you believe in this false form of music called real hip-hop, I assume a white man comes down your chimney on a magical slay and tongues down your mother every December 24th. Kill that mentality. Kendrick Lamar’s “GKMC” is one of the best hip-hop albums I’ve heard in a long time and it’s far from traditional. He took his life experience and turned it into a masterpiece.

Again, creativity and honesty is the blueprint you need to progress in this era. Dance moves, and poppy songs will live in the clubs and the radio, but here’s a chance to make music that will change lives. Affect the next rapper who will be claiming you as an influence. This is why the mindset of having a long term career is better than just a seasonal position as a musical janitor. We can live forever, not just within cyberspace but globally touch the world by going against the grain. The wheels of change are turning and now is not the time to stop the gears but push them in fast forward. Hank Moody once said, “Whatever you do, don't be another brick in the wall”.

Yoh says “Whatever you do, don’t be another Lil Mama sneaking up on Jay-Z”.

- Yoh (aka A$AP Yams at My Aunties House)

See Also: Waiting for J. Cole to Become Great…

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