OPINION: Under the Underground Hip-Hop

The icon representing the Underground Hip-Hop genre on SoundCloud (https://soundcloud.com/hermes-the-god)

The icon representing the “Underground Hip-Hop” genre on SoundCloud (https://soundcloud.com/hermes-the-god)

Aadesh Khadka

Under the underground hip-hop lies an empire of sacred rappers like MF DOOM, Melanin 9, R.A.P Ferrara, Hemlock Ernst, Cyrus Malachi, and many more, whose literary knowledge of hip hop has been buried in depth. Little does the mainstream world know about these Emcee’s. As much as I hate to say that these rappers are not highlighted, I am glad that they have not been corrupted by the “capitalistic titans”. The filthy ears of these contemporary corporations like Grammy, iHeartRadio, and American Music Honors and Award has been filled with capitalism, where fame, money, and commercialism has muted the real artist and buried them into the undergrounds. This has made the modern hip hop listeners “The Stranger,” because from the minority to the majority, they have depersonalized themselves from the jazzy hip-hop–that we knew–to 808 claps and traps. Once we rejoiced the authenticity of pure African-American culture, who primarily used Jazz and Rap to accentuate their voices. The denotation of Hip Hop and rap has been altered and now it self-contradicts from what it was once then versus what it is right now. Who do we blame? Contemporary so-called rappers? The mainstream media? Or the consumer?

The mumble rap has been tied or allied with the “capitalistic titan.” like McDonalds and Popeyes. For example, how does Megan Thee Stallion’s sandwich differentiate from the normal spicy chicken sandwich? That extra pint of ketchup and 2 extra slices of pickle with the same old greasy chicken? The consumers are just paying extra $5 for nothing but 2 slices of beetle sized pickle.  The mainstream media, rap, and the rappers have corrupted the brains and money of the consumers by getting commercialized and capitalistic. And in the midst of this capitalistic race, the real art, the artist, and the artistry has been vanquished and buried. We pay homage to Travis Scott burger more than the people that died in Astroworld. Has humanity also been sold in this growing capitalist world? Well, the broader the normalization of the mainstream media fusing with the big companies “capitalist regime”, the stronger their consumer psychology will become. And the more the companies get the consumer withheld with their manipulative consumer psychology, the harder it will be to draw a line between mainstream media and the market. 

Can I blame the people, the listeners, the consumer? Yes, because the people are the ones who have devalued the essentiality of lyrical rap. Sadly, we have come down to the lowest of hell pit in the context of hip hop. We as a listener have ingrained our brain with hedonism, the absolute illusion where rappers these days dust the eyes of the innocent and create a mirage of luxury in the desert. Instead of showing the actuality of America, where struggle and hustle kills the lives of the working citizen, all they show is fake money, jewelry, gangs, and women. Really? From the era of Tupac admiring and respecting women, “Dear mama”, we have come down to objectifying women by calling them unimaginably derogatory slurs. From rap being a way to come out of the gang violence “hoods and blocks.” We have flipped the effect because rap portrays gang violence to be cool and listeners admire it blindly. From people jamming on Lose Yourself-Eminem “one chance one opportunity.” Listeners fantasizing about Gucci Gang- Lil Pump “Drink lean and smoke, Gucci Gang.” So, people, the contemporary listeners are equally to blame for them patronizing contemporary “corrupted” hip-hop instead of “woke” underground rappers.