Tuesday, March 29, 2011

We Won't Be Stopped

I was about to be politically correct about this, but it's time to be direct. As I write this, I'm listening to T.I.'s "I'm Talkin' To You." I'm not even on any aggressive stuff right now, but I just see so many things I'm tired of... The game is weak, and we need to raise our standards.

I remember when I met one of my best friends and collaborators Thunda Corleone back in Mrs. Durst's ninth grade English class on the first day of high school. We connected over basketball, sneakers, but more than anything hip-hop. The classics that our older brothers listened, like Wu-Tang's 36 Chambers, Nas' Illmatic, OutKast's albums... Just real hip-hop. He said something I never forget when even talking about how the younger guys played the game, a metaphor for basketball and hip-hop at the same time: "Mike, man I got ups, but my brother and the dudes he hooped with had flight." In other words, these dudes today are impressive, but the vast majority of these emcees are not popping like that... If they have the style, they lack the substance.

I just want to see more good music. Less marketing plans, less ignorance, less glorification of material things and let's get back to what this music special in the first place... The fact that you could hear the pain and joy from an emcee on the same album is what made love hip-hop the way I do, what made me work on my own skills until I wasn't afraid to freestyle in front of my class mates at school anymore, what made me want to become my own producer just so I could get my voice as an emcee heard. Me, the Diamondback family and anyone I affiliate with are not doing this for accolades or the money... We do it because we love it enough to honor the culture.

I'm not saying I don't like my club music because anyone that has seen me out knows I will dance a fool, especially if I just got a fresh cut. But I'm also going to talk about the kids I see everyday raising their brothers and sisters because their one parent has two jobs. I'm going to talk about why we need to stop promoting violence and ignorance in our communities. If the major labels want to break bread, then good for them. But this isn't about them, this is about the people.

Let your boy cook... (I see you Lil' B.) This is Legacy Elite and Diamondback. We won't be stopped.

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