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Apr 8Liked by Manny Faces

Manny, I really appreciate this post. The point that drove it all home for me was the Audre Lorde quote. The text that followed affirmed the need for a different experience within hip-hop on the local and community levels. Hip-Hop began as a grassroots effort rooted in the innovations and bold action you described, so it’s only right that we move toward innovating the systems we interact with most. With this post I can hear you yelling β€œto hell with the mainstream radio, we got other fish to fry”. πŸ˜‚.

Great work!

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Thanks Chris! I appreciate the appreciation. And yea, I think that's pretty much how I feel. So many critics rant and rave about "the content" -- some of this is warranted of course, some of it is respectability politics, but the problem is that censoring any content can become a slippery slope. It can, and never should be, the answer -- and the "mainstream" or the music business itself, will never be the vehicle for anything other than what it currently is. My overarching argument throughout all my work is that we can have Hip Hop fueled political action, Hip Hop fueled youth empowerment, Hip Hop to help improve education and entrepreneurship and health/wellness and by extension, the communities where the artists tend to come from -- all the things the critics want -- DESPITE what's being manufactured across the rap music industrial complex, not being stuck waiting around for it to somehow be the savior. It never will. We have to do that work elsewhere. And when we do, the entire landscape just might change along with it. But it's easy to rail against the content and the big bad music industry and shake our fists and complain and feel like we're doing something. I get it. But, like all forms of activism, it takes a helluva lot more than that.

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Interesting article - rapping is fundamentally a form of expression. At the grassroots level you advocate for the benefit / authenticity of this expression is all the more impactul as expression at that level hasn't yet undergone corporate influence. So all the more important that it is recognized as one tool to help young people say what's on their minds

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