Thursday, April 28, 2005

Heedful Hip Hop- stomping the myth that all rap is evil

My letter to the Wall Street Journal, regarding Martha Bayles' Heedful Hip Hop opinion piece.

Martha Bayles' comments on rap music only prove that she wants to punish the whole style of music for the sins of some of its practitioners. While it's true that some of the best-selling artists like to exploit violence or misogyny, that isn't so for all rap musicians. Outkast was not only one of the most popular rap groups of the last few years but also made a huge pop crossover without trying to tantalize their audience with violent stories. What about rap artists like Jean Grae, Mos Def, Common, the Roots, Aesop Rock who all strive to promote a conscious within the rap community? I don't care for a lot of the gangster rap myself but to tar the whole style because of some artists who cash in on their wrongheaded personas is totally unfair. In this country, one way you can vote besides the ballot is with your wallet- if you don't agree with the rap music you hear, try to support the more positive artists and their message. If that happens, rest assured that the record labels will take note and start to support them also.


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