Hip-Hop Isn't Corny, You're Just Getting Older
“B.I.G. P.O.P.P.A., no info…” – The Notorious B.I.G.
Most everyone reading the above quote finished the lyric from the late GREAT Biggie. The reason being is because we all speak the same language within our culture. Make no mistake about it, Hip-Hop is OUR culture and far supersedes music. Hip-Hop wasn’t introduced to the rest of the world as music but it was, is & always be who we are, how we speak, how we walk and the rebellious spirit that we created out of frustration & a lack of being accepted by other cultures.
Hip-Hop legitimately means everything to me, I’m Haitian to the very core of my being but I’m also Hip-Hop, as a race, ethnicity and motherfucking nationality. I’m part of the 1st generation of Hip-Hop in my family, there’s a severe generational disconnect between my elders & I; understandably so, they weren’t born into Hip-Hop.
There’s also a grave disconnect between 80’s babies & 90’s babies, in which people of my generation dismiss & disparage everything the youth do, love and champion. Which makes our generation bigger hypocrites than the previous because we weren’t grandfathered in and once had the same young rebellious sprit as these younger people do today.
Whatever the youth spirit of this current generation may champion isn’t for us to co-sign or shit on. Our problem is that we went from rebellious and anti-establishment to stubborn and being the establishment against our own youth. From how they dress, to how they talk, to the music they love, we’ve jumped on a high horse and looked down on our own and we need to shut the fuck up & grow the fuck up.
Ever think the reason we view our youth as “misguided” is because we were too busy creating respect for ourselves in the world and while nobody gave us anything, we forgot to give the younger generation the game. Now that we’ve ignored them, we try to combat their own development by trying to force our flawed way of being onto them. It’s not our place to give the youth anything but guidance within our culture; they don’t need our permission to have their own voice. We sit and argue them down about their preferences, instead of appreciating them for finding their own niche.
You don’t like the music of today? That’s cool but you’re over 30, why would you relate to anyone name Lil Uzi Vert. Ok, his name is “funny”? Because names like Jay-Z, Biggie, LL Cool J, FUNKMASTER Flex weren’t funny to our predecessors? We’re becoming the exact thing that we despised during our come up and it makes me sick to see my “peers” (let’s be real, I’m the man & then there’s the rest of you) carry on like a bunch of little niggas. When I was coming up, running around and trying to grab my footing out here I didn’t have time for young nigga activities because I was always watching & learning from the old heads. Like Jadakiss said, “While you was running round pumping for niggas, I was listening, you still pumping for niggas, I’m coming thru visiting.” But y’all didn’t listen and y’all stuck doing young nigga activities as old heads and come off like little niggas. We supposedly paved the way, so why the fuck would we be keeping up or trying to compete with the youth spirit? Y’all look lost, dazed & confused aka like a bunch of little niggas.
There’s that disconnect because why would the younger generation look to any of us for guidance, if we out here bending our wrists in ways they weren’t meant to bend to take selfies, snappy chatty’s and carrying on online just like them? This groupthink personality so many of us portray is why the generational disconnect exists and why respect doesn’t.
If the youth spirit believe an artist of their time is a legend or put out a classic, who are we to tell them they’re wrong? We’ll go to lengths where we’ll Google a definition of a word, like “look this is the proper to do things” and causing that resentment from their rebellious spirit and making them look at us like we have no clue about this thing called Hip-Hop. We create our own language, style, way of life and general being within our culture, so why tell them the rules of who they should be? Who’s to say they are beyond the realm of understanding what our music and our time in the forefront was like?
I had a good time in high school and maybe that’s the reason I don’t see a need to revisit it by acting like a little nigga all day, every day. I’m 32 years old and not “washed” because I actually got busy in my 32 years and lived them to the fullest, while being productive and proactive as fuck; and still going. In order to garner respect, one must have self-respect and a lot of my generation lacks it by trying to revert to their youth.
The greatest rapper to ever live once said, “Y’all should grow the fuck up, come here coach you.” And he didn’t mean that by being hands on, he meant it by watching his moves and watching how to mature and age gracefully within this Hip-Hop culture of ours. Sure the youth spirit may not respect our legends the way we presume they should and it makes me absolutely CRINGE at the notion that I know they’d be making fun of Biggie if he were alive and making music. But that’s their prerogative, we need to cultivate a connection with our youth and bridge the gap, so that the true meaning and heart of our culture remains during any and all evolving generations.
Don’t be that old cornball wearing hats from the gas station and taking pictures of your outfit because you couldn’t get a woman to fuck you in your teenage years. Be an adult, make Biggie proud.