Rap = The New Special Olympics

Ooh look, I am about to piss some people off, ain't I?

Well stick with me, here...
See, in the special Olympics I am to understand that there are no 'losers' and that everyone gets a medal.
In today's hip hop climate, there are no losers, per se, in that no one is actually 'winning' in the same manner that they might have just 5 short(ish) years ago... I had to refer to my 2005 hip hop post to make sure, here, but it seems to me that was among the last years that good music sold (for the most part), and shitty music didn't get a second look, at least critically.
[Phlip note - because damned if you motherfuckers were BUYING anything... Looking at the post, this was about the year that even I, an avid collector, finally lost faith and stopped buying shit]
Anyway, back to the task at hand... Hip hop and the special Olympics... I am not going to sully this post with a perusal of the billboard top 200 chart, because no one is buying hip hop these days anyway. I'm lying, I looked and didn't see shit worth caring about in the top 20. I mean, the Black Eye Peas are there, Eminem is as well, as is Young Money Entertainment. We all know why Black Eye Peas are there, they're non-threatening and appeal to little white girls Mainstream America, while Eminem was given a shot in the arm by releasing a 'refill' that pushed his album back on the chart. Further down, people are still buying Blueprint 3 like it is actually a great album (hint... it is not, it is good at best. Name is selling this one), followed by a too-close-for-comfort Gucci Mane album.
This is what bothers me...
See, we have digressed so far that a Gucci Mane album could chart within 15 places of a Jay-Z album (even if the Jay-Z album is substandard)? What next, you gonna tell me that we have to wait 10 years for Detox, but some fucking coon named Waka Flocka Flame can release a new mixtape every other week AND get an album out, and that doesn't bother people enough to stop it from happening?
You mean to tell me that established stars and pseudo-legends have allowed themselves to release substandard bullshit albums (I'm looking at YOU, Snoop) or drug-fueled rock fusion abortions (here's to you, Wayne) or actually get BEHIND this shitty shit (you again, Wayne)?

"Everyone get your hip hop license, no credentials or testing needed!"

No, I am not one of those pretentious fuckers who will sit back and say "oh, that's rap, not hip hop," and detest the ones who hide behind such arguments to make attempts at validating what they do or don't like/make. If any of the elements of hip hop are present, then hip hop is taking place, live with it fuckers.
I worry about the health of an industry in which a Hurricane Chris or any number of these no-talent hacks could release an album and HONESTLY think that they're as good as anything north of the sounds I make when I am taking my morning grunt, but are fully fed this bullshit by the people who actually DO buy music.
I worry about the health of an industry where an OJ Da Juice Man can defend having been (deservedly) booed off of a stage by saying that he never presented himself as a lyricist, but as someone who describes 'trap activities,' and that the people who booed him 'must don't got no swagger'.

Perhaps, with some rappers now in their 16th-17th years in the game with an album every other year on average, we should now be worried that they (or their handlers) have not learned to do what it is they do in the midst of a changing market.
What some of you might or might not realize about me is that my jazz collection is arguably more impressive than my hip hop collection, though only slightly less expansive due to the availability on compact disc, my preferred method of collection...
One looking in on such goings on might be inclined to say that jazz in it's heyday (think Miles, Coltrane, young Hancock, Monk, etc...) presented ONLY good musicians. What one must understand, though, it was better internally policed. I say that to say that in order for someone to come up, they would have to prove they were worth the attention, and more often than not this included a stop in the stable(s) of a legend on the way through. Coltrane played with Miles Davis AND Thelonius Monk on his way through. Herbie played with miles and both Freddie Huibbard and Wayne Shorter play/played with him on THEIR ways through.
Using this difference in quality control, we will call Jazz music the real Olympiad, while rap will play the role of the Special Olympics. The only criteria to entering the special Olympics is being 'special' (hahahaha) and wanting to participate. Jazz music does a better and VERY efficient job of consuming the weak among it, lest we forget that Miles had a son who never popped off. Hell, I never even knew he existed until I watched a documentary on Miles a couple years ago.

So now, what with the internet, youtube, ustream and the ghost of MySpace (because damned if I have spent more than 5 minutes on mine since August sometime), we have a ton of internets rappers competing in the Special Olympics, if only because they know someone with a computer, a DAW program and internet connectivity.
Now we have an influx of literally retarded people making rap music, as well as people who may well be NORMAL willing to pretend to be dumber than fuck to appeal to the judges in the games (I'm talking at you Algernod Lanier 'Plies' Washington).
You know who else tried that shit?


We all remember how that turned out for him.

The sad fact is that anyone who THINKS they can rap is allowed to try to do so, and apparently to the level where they can claim 'victory' of some sort in this rap shit. The careers of many show to this fact. Since no one is standing up and telling these people that they fucking suck and shouldn't be fucking rapping, we will qualify this approach as identical to that of the Special Olympics.
Fuck this working shit, I want my cut of the money in this shit too, I am recording a rap album this weekend whenever my new computer comes.


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