A poet's mission is to make words do more work than they normally do, to make them work on more than one level.
We'd taken up our positions on the benches between the school hall and a newly-installed outdoor basketball court. Being hip-hoppers, we were obliged to be obsessed with basketball. None of us had a ball.
I don't like shit too perfect. I want some human stake in my shit. If it's too perfect I ain't really with it. If it's too clean I ain't really with it. If it's too polished I don't really like it.
My inspiration for writing music is like Don McLean did when he did American Pie or Vincent. Lorraine Hansberry with A Raisin in the Sun. Like Shakespeare when he does his thing, like deep stories, raw human needs.I'm trying to think of a good analogy. It's like, you've got the Vietnam War, and because you had reporters showing us pictures of the war at home, that's what made the war end, or that shit would have lasted longer. If no one knew what was going on we would have thought they were just dying valiantly in some beautiful way. But because we saw the horror, that's what made us stop the war.So I thought, that's what I'm going to do as an artist, as a rapper. I'm gonna show the most graphic details of what I see in my community and hopefully they'll stop it quick.I've seen all of that-- the crack babies, what we had to go through, losing everything, being poor, and getting beat down. All of that. Being the person I am, I said no no no no. I'm changing this.
In those years, hip-hop saved my life. I was still half alien to the people around me. I loved them, mostly because I'd realized that there was no other choice. Hip-hop gave me a common language, but that August, on liberated land, I found that there were other ways of speaking, a mother tongue that, no matter age, no matter interest, lived in us all.
Life is too short for shitty sex and bad relationships. So go find someone who fucks you right and treats you how you deserve to be treated.
Whether we consider hip-hop as an evolved manifestation of the Harlem Renaissance or something completely new under the sun, it clearly has moved beyond the stage of just entertaining lives to that of informing and empowering lives.
Rap is supposed to motivate, humours, address societal issues & personal feelings, and also liberate me through art, not insult our women.
You can be the ugliest man in the world but once you got money, you can have all the women in the world.
Hip-hop...has been the proverbial key that’s opened the door for me to roam this breathtaking planet.
When hip-hop was born she had no commercial home, and was an invention of beautiful creativity. Born from a beautiful struggle, today she is mostly a 'ratchet' bitch spitting nonsense from her pimp's mansion.
Hopeful dreams - even where crack kings’ and dope fiends feast. Dust from the ash and rubble, they shine like bright stars once the mic is gripped and the bars are spit.
I want to marry his smile, and if his smile is already married to someone else, then I want to marry his eyebrows and eyes. They're remarkable. Nobody's ever made better use of his or her eyes or eyebrows as a rapper than Kurtis Blow.
...We claim the present as the pre-sent, as the hereafter. We are unraveling our navels so that we may ingest the sun. We are not afraid of the darkness, we trust that the moon shall guide us.We are determining the future at this very moment. We now know that the heart is the philosophers' stone. Our music is our alchemy. We stand as the manifested equivalent of 3 buckets of water and a hand full of minerals, thus realizing that those very buckets turned upside down supply the percussion factor of forever...
...We claim the present as the pre-sent, as the hereafter. We are unraveling our navels so that we may ingest the sun. We are not afraid of the darkness, we trust that the moon shall guide us. We are determining the future at this very moment. We now know that the heart is the philosophers' stone. Our music is our alchemy...
Maybe I write because I’ve learned to show certain parts of my heart on the page that I still struggle to capture in speech.
As with outlaw figures, in diverse musical and oral cultures throughout the world- Mexican corridos and Egyptian shaabi music, for example- Hip Hop's irreverence toward dominant values and noncompliance with the status quo creates alternative, counterhegemonic spaces.
As social phenomena, languages are tied up in world of unequal power relations, gaining or losing status not based on technical linguistic grounds but on social judgement, biases, and stereotypes that are based on the status of their speakers. As such, we argue that white America's love-hate relationship with black modes of communication can only be interpreted within a framework that considers language a primary site of cultural contestation. It should be clear by now that it's about more than a mothafucka, right? Our analysis of Black Language forms that the dominant culture considers inflammatory, controversial, or stigmatized allows us to make several observations. First, building off what anthropologist and linguist Arthur Spears noted in his discussion of uncensored speech, Black verbal culture, like all cultures is a complex network of predispositions, values, behaviors, expectations and routines. Language practices, in their varying sociocultural contexts, can only be understood if read within the full range of the community's speech activities, and that requires rigorous ethnographic search and analysis. Second the community's beliefs and ideas about language- it's language ideologies- should be the primary point of departure for investigation and interpretation.