I can’t believe in 2012 people are still putting down rappers for not being real. No rapper is real. No artist is real. No anything that’s for sale, YES FOR SALE, is real.
IT’S FOR SALE. IT’S TO MAKE A PROFIT. IT’S BEEN EDITED. IT’S BEEN GROOMED. IT’S BEEN MODIFIED TO MANIPULATE YOU INTO DOING SOMETHING. BUY!
In rap we put down other rappers by saying they’re not real. Rick Ross is not real. Drake is not real. And we lift rappers up by saying they are real. Eminem is real. Nas is real. Tyler the Creator is real.
No rapper is real. And why should they be? Have you ever heard a real rapper? There music sounds like shit. It doesn’t even sound like music. It’s not mixed, not mastered, NOT EDITED IN ANYWAY. If you can name a rapper that’s real then that rapper isn’t real.
So then what is “real”?
REAL IS A MARKETING GIMMICK
When someone says “this rapper is so real”, treat that the same as them saying this rapper is good. That’s it. When we see a good movie, we may say, wow those special effects looked so real, but we know it wasn’t real. We know the talking monkeys in Planet of the Apes are not real. The closest thing we have to real are those totally random youtube clips.
WE DON’T WANT REAL MUSIC
If Rick Ross was an actual drug kingpin who had killed people in the double digits as he claimed on Body Count we would think he’s an idiot and he probably would have gone to jail (like the real Rick Ross). I don’t even think the faux Rick Ross has even been to jail for anything. And I don’t mean that to put him down. That’s good for him. We should be applauding him.
WE WANT REAL CONTENT
Fair enough. You may say, Tupac is real because he raps about teen pregnancy, and Rick Ross is fake because he raps about selling cocaine in massive quantities. Clearly, Rick Ross doesn’t sell drugs by the ton. But then what does Tupac know about teen pregnancy? Did he ever get pregnant as a teen? Obviously not. He was born to a teen mother and probably had friends that we’re teen mothers. He was around people that went through a certain thing and was able to create an acurate portrayal of what they are going through. But can’t the rapper Rick Ross use this same argument? He can. Hell anyone whose watched Scarface, Goodfather, Goodfellas, Boyz in tha Hood, City of God, New Jack City, and listened to all the gangster rappers of the past could understand that lifestyle. The key thing is they obviously need creativity, talent and experience to MAKE IT SOUND GOOD.
WE WANT MUSIC THAT SOUNDS GOOD
Let’s draw a parallel to movies. A movie can be about almost any subject (except comedy) and win an Oscar for best movie. Let’s look at the last few winners. In 2011 it was The Artist, in 2010 it was The King’s Speech, in 2009 it was The Hurt Locker, in 2008 it was Slumdog Millionaire and in 2007 it was No Country for Old Men. Clearly these movies have nothing in common with each other, one’s a silent French film, one’s a historical piece, one’s an army film with political undertones, one’s a love story set in India and one’s an 80’s western. They have nothing in common with each other, other than they are all really good movies. Also none of them are real. Sure the King’s Speech is based on actual historical events, but the film has been edited and manipulated in such away to MAKE THE MOVIE BETTER. New dialogue, new scenes, and new characters are added to make the film convey it’s message better.
ALL MUSIC IS POLISHED
In music, artists edit a song to make the song better. So that it has more impact. So that it conveys a message better. So that it sounds good. People (cough * J.Cole *) incorrectly think just because they have a “real message” in their music that they are the second coming of Tupac. No they are not. The thing Tupac had was that his songs we’re actually undeniably good songs. You can’t listen to Dear Mama or Keep Your Head Up and not like it. Just like you can’t watch any of these Academy Award winning movies and not like them, even though at first the story may not appeal to you. Obviously, you could hate Slumdog Millionaire and Dear Mama but I bet your someone that has no taste and then your opinion doesn’t really matter.
WHAT DO YOU WANT YORAPPER?
I like you want the same thing: Great music. That’s it. Though that’s the hard part as almost every great idea has been exploited especially in hip hop. But that is until someone comes along and changes everything.