January 14, 2011

Nas-Hip Hop is Dead - Not Anymore, Now It's Alive!


MTV interviewed Nas in wake of rumors of him joining the roster of G.O.O.D. artists that includes Kanye West, Common, and Mos Def. These are indeed interesting comments from an artist who is no doubt still hungry in the game for various reasons. Nas of course is speaking on the commercial form of Hip-Hop that has made Urban radio listenable again and has made pop stars out of Drake and Nicki Minaj on Rhythmic/Top 40 radio.

"Nicki Minaj, Drake, [Rick] Ross and Kanye just came to just kill it off," Nas said. "You know, they did they thing. They kept this thing alive."

"People like Kanye is brilliant, so when Kanye is out there doing his thing, he’s entertaining all audiences and he’s keeping it hip-hop at the same time. Nobody does that but him."

It's noteworthy to mention that Nas does not say a single word about Lil Wayne in this short interview, whose influence over Hip Hop over the last few years is unquestioned and may have been even greater than the rappers he acknowledged. (Nicki Minaj and Drake are from Lil' Wayne's Young Money camp.)

Is there any connection with Lil Wayne's absence from radio playlists because of his extended stay at Riker's Island over the last year and Nas' perception of Hip Hop's revival? Probably. Now that Lil Wayne's songs are back on the radio airwaves in full rotation, we look to turn this stuff off whenever we hear it. It's just a real example of the repetitive and uncreative Autotune mess that caused Nas to declare that Hip Hop was dead in the first place. We really believe it drives more listeners away than it does to bring ears to the station. It's just more of the stuff that seems to get its approval and clearance from the record industry's quality control of production unit--that would be the strip club owners and the pole dancers. They give it a thumbs up because it's got a good beat and it's easy to dance to...sounds like a Rate-a-Record segment on Dick Clark's American Bandstand. This is real talk fans and not hate.

Now we know Drake is a Canadian and from a different country, Nicki Minaj is the queen of a Nation of Barbies and Kanye sometimes seems to be from another planet, but Lil Wayne has already told you he's not human. Let's keep Hip Hop for the human beings, OK? We think Hip Hop will be better served that way as was Kanye West's My Dark Twisted Fantasy. At least let's keep Lil Dwayne Carter off the radio.
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