Hip Hop/Rap has changed! It has morphed into something different. For almost half a decade, artists have been reinventing, redefining and changing the culture of hip hop/rap music as we know it. For the true hip hoppers and lovers of the genre, we were raised by hip hop and a different set of rules, for what is and is not a part of Hip Hop.
When most think of hip hop/rap, a mental image of Biggie and Tupac surface. Those two artists are the face of hip hop/rap, with contributions from others: Nas, KRS-One, , 50 Cent, J. Cole and Jay Z, etc… So many artists, dead and alive, have contributed to the culture behind hip hop/rap and its image.
Fast forward to today. From 2012 up until today, hip hop/rap has been the mother to a new culture in music. Of course it didn’t happen overnight. Hip Hop/rap started seeing other people in 2005 when 50 Cent gave us Get Rich or Die Trying. That album was a reminder that artists aren’t born artists, instead they realize their artfulness and grow into it.
People make the mistake and categorize this new wave of rappers as hip hop artists. Young Thug, Lil Uzi Vert, Lil Yatchy, XXXTentacion, 21 Savage and many more are products of the same hip hop we hold dear and love. I say this because their music is expressed differently from anything we have ever encountered in music.
Most people fit them into a small space and ridicule their music, saying it doesn’t resemble hip hop culture. I beg to differ because their music is still art and that’s what hip hop is. Music is made from emotion to cater to our current mood/phase in life. As listeners we don’t have the right to question how an artist produces their art, we can only appreciate it.
Take Nas for example. His music is expressed with lyrics so deep it speaks to us. That’s how he knows how to express himself. Young Thug on the other hand is not as lyrical as Nas but it doesn’t mean we discredit his hard work. His music caters more to a party of friends en route to a party or gathering. Young Thug’s music makes you “wanna move,” intoxicate yourself and be a part of something fun, while Nas’s music forces you to think critically.
With this new offspring Hip Hop/Rap has introduced to the world, we have to accept and nurture it. Because honestly, not everyone wants to think critically on their way to a party, the same way no one wants to intoxicate themselves en route to a job interview.
This sub genre of hip hop does not have a name yet. While a name is in the works, I only ask we continue to recognize the good music every artist puts out. Because one truth we can all relate to is that “one man’s trash is another man’s treasure.”
You either see the beauty in a 21 Savage song, or move on to Jay Z’s Blueprint album. Growth is very inevitable. If you know, love and respect the hip hop/rap culture, then you shouldn’t have a problem appreciating this new wave of rappers doing it differently.
What do you think about new wave rappers? Let us know!