Greetings and salutations. Allow me to introduce myself. I simply go by the name Moz. I’m not here to present myself like I have a doctorate in hip hop or have a better opinion than the next man. What I can say however is that I have an endearing love for this here culture. I recognize how much we need to protect it from the clutches of f*ckboys and lame ass posers who think we cannot see through their thinly veiled veneer. Nah fam, I’m here to give credit where it’s due and expose the fakes.
Now that we got the pleasantries out the way let’s get down to the main reason of this column.
Imagine this as my soap box at the corner of the street where I will be sharing my thoughts on relevant subjects pertaining to our beloved hip hop culture. The hip hop climate is consistently evolving so I’m pretty sure we will have a lot to talk about, and with so many opinions online I’m sure interesting conversations will come out of this column.
My first mandate is to give you all my perspective of the current hip hop landscape. To my left are the unwavering staunch hip hop heads. This crowd consists of hip hop fans who claim to have the strongest connection to the roots of hip hop. It’s thanks to these fans that we still have support for “rappidy rap” artists. The artists who are nice with the pen and have dedicated their lives to the lyrics. Artists who came up with the previous generation like DMX, Nas and Tumi from the V (or now known as Stogie T) who gave us those hard hitting, face melting lyrics that had you wondering how on earth they conceptualized that.
To the right you have the frontier brigade pushing for the evolution of hip hop and constantly seeking new ways of expression. These fans will typically adore and support the trap gods Gucci Mane, Migos, Young Thug and Travis Scott just for example.
However, the hip hop landscape is not as clearly defined because somewhere in the middle you have pop infused rap by artists like Rae Sremmurd and then you have emotionally charged rappers like Drake who by now resembles something of a behemoth of the game. And somewhere in the background in the Beverly Hills streets you have the mad scientist Kanye West having everybody in the game guessing what he’s got for us next. Everybody talks a big game but deep down inside we all know who’s running hip hop right now, all hail KingKendrick!
In the local hip hop scene, the game is split by two factions. AKA fans and Cassper Nyovest fans. The two giants of SA hip hop continue to face off at every opportunity and dishing us the hits that we want but also a side of the petty angst that everybody has grown tired of. One thing you have to admit about SA hip hop is that we are blessed with rappers heavy on the pen like Kwesta and Kid-X and looming over the horizon you have the gqom/ trap lawds WTF (Witness The Funk) charging up and down the hills recruiting followers as they walking and dabbing. The South African hip hop scene is very much as eclectic as the international scene.
I’m of the opinion that the prospects for hip hop flourishing have never looked better, and I’ll tell you why. Never before have we been this open to experimenting and testing new things that are considered out of the norm. We’re venturing out seeking new possibilities and artists like Lil Yachty and OkMalumKoolKat are making sure of this. At the same time, we remain rooted to the heritage that we come from and artists like Logic and Nasty C will make sure of this. I for one am feeling very positive for the future of hip hop.
Trust me when I tell you beloved, there is far more to this game than what meets the eye. This won’t be just another glorified gossip column that does nothing but spread rumours or inform you of things you already know. It is about time that we have a platform that unearths the many hidden layers and nuances in hip hop. I think we should leave it there for the first post and we’ll pick things up in my next post. Until then…