Thursday, January 31, 2008
AFRICANLESS- NON AMERICANS
AFRICANLESS- NON AMERICANS?
by Chuck D.
January 30, 2008
I have a straight razor opinion about the electoral process in the USSA right about now. Since they've reduced politics into a game of sports highlights, people ask me these loaded questions, expecting some half baked safe ass answers. First of all, when folk ask 'what do I think about BARACK OBAMA?' - I dig the dude, although I think his track record has been conservative as hell for various reasons so he could get ahead in Uncle Sam's eyes. Cool, whatever... But I also retort that I think the United States needs 16 years of the man's intelligence, energy, and later as he develops a savvy and presidential skill while working in the public eye. To me Amerikkka is still about race like a black and white old TV set. There is no way one can avoid the race issue here in these image projected times. That's why I think that BARACK OBAMA can best serve the rebound image of the USA as the 'greatest Vice President' the country has ever had. Think about it. The VP position the past 8 years of bush and dick has been a position of power for all the wrong reasons. This is not 1936, every millisecond of presidential pressure will be felt by someone trying to lead the country the right way, not just the 'white' way. The way to lessen the pressure job is to have a powerful vice prez, cabinet, and to basically not give a damn. And today the VP position in Amerikkka can't be looked at as a second place job, rather a point guard position to the scorer. Or in CHI speak SCOTTIE PIPPEN.
This won't be Hillary or Barack , it will be Hillary AND Barack. They as individuals will try to show so much care and concern for their jobs if they get it that the intensity of the seat may be too much. Twice as much for Barack in trying to prove to everybody he can do it. Has anybody checked how the pressures mounted on Bill Clinton's appearance? And to son of a bush less because he doesn't give a squat. The rules were changed after the job killed FDR after 12 years of trying to fix a nation. That was way back when. These times in the smaller world every move is scrutinized. Lets say BARACK grows an afro or a beard, it will be a new relevant discussion on what's appropriate for the growth of black hair. Yeah, you cannot avoid the issue of racial difference here. Only work will absolve that. The pressure will take him out, he can't afford Crawford like retreats.
Hillary Clinton is hurling too much ego for her to appoint somebody like Barack as her VP ticket. She better realize an unprecedented team approach is her only chance. Taking ego and tradition out of this. Hillary and Barack will have to be more of a team than head and assistant to get this place somewhat back together. This team has to roll up the sleeves and drop the bucket and work. I hear people ask why would Barack settle for the second job? I say it's the wrong way to look at it. VP here has to be looked at as a lateral position. If Obama's president he will be tested internationally immediately. You don't think HUGO CHAVEZ is reaching out to brotherman? How about CASTRO if he's feelin his oats again. What's the middle east mess politic, his father's homeland continent. of Africa? I'm in France and they're watching the run offs like a game show with these crazy expectations. The republicans are the Bill Belicheks of politics, the axis of evil to do anything to steal a win, no matter who. At the end of the day they gonna make Mitt Romney look like the prettiest girl in drunk room at 4:44 am. He looks the part of the typical winner and loser Amerikkka has had.
Real talk is saying that investment in BARACK OBAMA is getting Amerikkka comfortable with him as a Vice President. This is the price. Hillary can still get strategy in the bed better that Barack can right now from a crew. Experience can be gained as Mr OBAMA roams free safety to deal better with issues and constituency without the pressure. It can be a four year soapbox campaign to turn heads. There's so much clean up work to do BARACK OBAMA 2016 sounds like a grand idea. For those that think it's far away they have the simple, nimble mind of a mere consumer, not realizing that companies already are breaking out mid teens strategies for robots to follow. As President ,I dare not expect anything done quicker for black people, in fact we better look at it the same way we look at a black judge. Don't expect to be a priority here. It's a reason that I recently ditched African-American as a term for blackfolk in 2008. The title is too ambiguous. BARACK makes me cringe when I hear this come out of his mouth. He's clearly African American, father from Africa, mother from here. Black people here- we're systematically detached from Africa and increasingly Amerikkka, as I say many of us made to think ' We don't give a damn or know enough about AFRICA, and Amerikkka don't give a fu*k about us.' Yes the term African-American is a noble idea to keep hope alive as REV JESS JAX tells us, but in 2008 black may be the grip to hold on to the diaspora.
The illusion of true diversity has faked us into a final position of thinking the ability to be a equal consumer makes us equal Amerikkkans. NOT. There are people in Amerikkka that have and will have long wealth in this recession as we think that a well plastered entertainer or athlete symbolizes the American chance for all of us. I don't know about the next African American person, but 95% of my family is check to check cash poor. We can't look back past 70 years of anyone owning a home in the North. This illusion of diversity makes Amerikkka see many colors and shades of folk on commercials today while the production companies that get those 6-7 figure jobs remain 99% white. Yeah. So lets be real about this next phase of America. The fact remains that every single President of The United States has been a white male, but the even more glaring one is that the runner up has also been of the same ilk. BARACK OBAMA for 16 years yall. But then as a black man whose been here almost half a century, based on the track record how do I really know a better Amerikkka is truly better for me? So I hear in the background 'keep hope alive....keep hope alive....keep hope alive....keep hope alive....keep hope alive....'
EVOLUTIONARY VS REVOLUTIONARY
So I get the feedback that DEF JAM will not replace the Presidential job JAY Z stepped down from. I ran into a lawyer that represents me with Universal, for my holdings, and songs etc. He said that these people are just business crunchers at best, I told him in the lobby in CANNES that those weasels couldn't do another business, that's why these lawyers hang around entertainment because they appear to be less dysfunctional. Here's my response to Universals announcement. ..and by the way I was ONLY concerned because it was DEF JAM, It's not that I was seeking anything else. Sht if you gonna be tossing around those positions giving it to folk with light resumes on diverse duty, then check my hand up. Well anyway...here's to the buzzards of business....
Chuck D's Statement to Not Filling the Position of DEF JAM President After JAY Z Stepped Down
"It's really disappointing that UNIVERSAL decided not to replace the vacated DEF JAM job. Its sort of expected, and a primary reason why the music business has collapsed. The sports world relies on a mix of business people, coaches, ex-players and players to further an organized growing path in what it does. It's why it does well and we remain fans. I'm embarrassed at how musicians and artists in other genres of music make us appear to be greed-infested, structureless idiots when it comes down to the organization of black music and culture.
And it's quite clear that these folks could care less. The same thing that happened to MOTOWN is DEF JAM's fate. In my opinion, the fact that 10 -15 individuals in the guise of hovering buzzards are given keys to the culture based on their alliances with these corporations, is a partial reason for the troubled condition it's in. Hence music, and especially this urban, black, whatever you wanna call it, is an incestuous inner circle of usual suspects that are financially trusted over black culture by a select 'other few.' It's evident that we are not the same people." Chuck D
I still get questioned on why I consider JAY Z the greatest MC up to his point. He embodied all the greats, developed his own style, made it work, and was later fearless and flawless in exhibiting this skill of song in front of any crowd. This is no knock against who I consider the most feared, yet respected, embodiment of a MC , Blastmaster KRS-ONE. No knock against who I consider the most skilled; BIG DADDY KANE, the wittiest KOOL MOE DEE, the most powerful MELLE MEL, and the most tenured LL COOL J, or the cleverest MR ICE CUBE. MOE DEE has a book about this so maybe yall should read it. There's a difference between evolutionary and revolutionary. For example RAKIM is clearly revolutionary as with KRS ONE . DE LA SOUL is revolutionary, TRIBE CALLED QUEST evolutionary. MELLE MEL revolutionary, LL evolutionary. We can go on. Certain MCS set a original path that they couldn't exploit themselves as someone riding behind their path.
But let me tell you about THIS brother...beyond all amazing emcees I've heard is someone I'm proud to know and work with, and hopefully you will witness as well. J LEE from the HEET mob in KANSAS CITY is the most awesome delivery emcee yet. He is simply a sensai of rap. Peep heet mob led by the amazing J LEE and beats by VIC HUNT aka Daheetius. Sht J LEE and his crew can get anybody scared....
I have to be honest I'm not hearing much of anything as of now. Nothing. I think when you have a gang of evolutionary things happening, it takes time for something truly revolutionary to pop out. It's why peeping MYSPACE and iLIKE pages may be the place to hear some new sht.
LL and RUN
LL is my man as well as RUN but I've been totally confused by some recent decisions they've both made recently. LL has made some records recently be it for mixtape or next album that in my honest opinion has trekked backwards for a near 40 year old man with almost grown children. Trying to make Queens clubbangers is one thing, but he's reaching into inferior territory with wack N-word laden choruses and spray on street rough-cred. What's Your Hood Like and another called Queens. Cmon, L is way above that. Fu*k a mixtape and its appeal if it brings down everything you built over the last 25 years. Reach for higher ground L because you can touch it and then bring some integrity down to these streets. They expect that from you.
RUN on the other hand has said he's retired RUN-DMC because there's no longer JMJ. It's his excuse for not touring with DMC. Sad. Talking to RUN last year he said GRANDMASTER FLASH would be a great mix, as well as my suggestion of DJ HURRICANE whose HOLLIS CREW, AFROS, BEASTIE BOYS, DAVY DMX , connection makes him a no brainer. It's just that CANE don't take no crap. But he was truly JMJ's man and would stand the legacy proud. But RUN said it was over. But through the process he released a fantastic solo album called DISTORTION a couple years back, and now is going out on the road to pair up with KID ROCK. Cmon RUN-DMC just study the career of SAM and DAVE and put the small sht to the side. I'd pay to see RUN-DMC in a minute, in fact drive their damn tour bus if need be. It's a pact FLAV and I made long ago-, no matter what road we take, the group is greater than both of us and we will find time to do PE, regardless of the lectures, and tv shows we got.
After D and I participated in the launch of BEYOND.FM ( joined by FLAV in Vegas) I was telling DJ JOHNNY 'JUICE' ROSADO that his workouts are returning the voice back to raps 'KING OF ROCK'. It's getting stronger by the day, as I was emceeing next to D in a medley of classic and new cuts he was doing.
When he passed I saw all kinds of convoluted news reports about his eccentric directions and life. I saw news reports grasp and struggle with his alleged Anti Semitism and anti Americanism. Well there's an answer for the latter. The US snatched and forbid him 3.5 million dollars that he made in the early 90's in a BORIS SPASSKY rematch in sanctioned Belgrade. I'd be hot too. Like the USSA's fingers ain't meddled in enough pots. I can't stand these border principles. Asking for permission and having passports makes it definitely NOT a free country or world. For the Anti-Semitism part, they said his mother was Jewish, so he was half Jewish. I don't understand. If there was a black person lets say.... Clarence Uncle THOMAS passing bills that in essence handicapped poor black folk, would the press say he's anti-black while being black, or that was just the JOB?
Nutty Bobby Fisher was just plain crazy then, leave at that. Lets say his rants made it very difficult and sticky for his fellow Jewish constituents, like many black folk who speak contrary to the needs of black people,but get lauded and applauded in the western media as heroes for a an American liberal understanding. Sht, the confusing wild web of racism peeks its ugly head from ALL angles if you care to notice.
Just got back from MIDEMnet in CANNES FRANCE. The work and touring PE did last year has had a resonating effect in France. I swear that Paris is as a black city like Harlem or even the ATL. Tell the world. PE had established presence in legendary standing here by simply staying the course in revolutionary outlook. This place is also watching every second of the primaries. The expectation of the earth is hinging on this electoral balance. About MIDEMnet before it used to be 15-20% of the MIDEM convention, the largest international music convention on the planet. The remaining 80% would market, barter, and trade the traditional physical music business. MIDEMnet covered the digital delivery aspect with online, mobile, and computer hardware representatives and CEOs finding, and paving new roads for music related entertainment. This year I keynoted on a panel named 'Fans Business-They Care, How Can They Help You?' ALI PARTOVI from iLIKE , Bryan Perez, from Live Nation, Fabrice Sergent from Cellfish Media, and Johan Vosmeijer from Sellaband. Especially ALI from iLike spoke of the explosive viral attractiveness of iLike. Try it. Ever since Facebook adapted it as their multimedia widgetry , it's become MYSPACE plus.
Had to jet out after two days to get back, but headed back to FRANCE next week to perform with MR ARCHIE SHEPP with a contingent of SLAMjamz Artists, KYLE JASON, JAHI, BRIAN HARDGROOVE, and DJ LORD plus yours truly to come up with a dynamic improv. Two weeks back to back dealing with CHARLES DE GAULLE Airport is much. Usually I drive in France, I don't know exactly as I didn't drive in NICE -CANNES this time because I was in and out. BTW I'll miss the entire SUPER BOWL while I head again to Europe. When I land I'll know the winner.
GERMS , COVER YOUR FACE. In EUROPE there is a terrible habit of people not covering their mouths when they sneeze and cough. Coupled with a general rudeness from older EUROs especially if you come across them as a person of color. On the plane, tight azz AIR FRANCE I was squeezing by this coughing person in the aisle seat. He was older, coughing and sort of tired and sick and wasn't really trying to move so I had to limbo around and climb over him. I sorta fell into this 90 year old woman who had a blindfold over her eyes sleeping. She woke up and punched me in the back. Yo , I really could NOT stop laughing after she did that. And she had every right after I fell on her side.
I just asked how the American sports media says very little of nothing about hockey fights while they'll say that when the brother-laden NBA has a fight it's considered 'disgusting' and 'deplorable in the words and tone of BILL WALTON. I was talking about this with MIKE TILLERY. It's not that I want to see brothers fight, but I don't wanna hear about how Canadians are another culture entirely.
Let me tell you something. Before this presidential election becomes a 'selection' black folk better get passports. Yes I do realize this will be a challenge to Homeland security if a million folks bum rushed all of a sudden. Last year the services were shut down. Still there's no reason NOT to get one because with the failing economy this place may come up with all types of reasons to say you can't leave.
I heard some idiot on the radio say the way to handle the illegal immigrant situation is to have citizens call them out and charge them with felonies. This person was a black talk show DJ. Shows you he can't spell diaspora. The border policy is so archaic it's a step away from forts. The nerve of the damn pilgrims who 'discover' a land. Build a fort to protect them from natives. Then venture out and maim the natives for 3000 miles to the west. Come up with some cock-laden flag, rhetoric, and anthem and name the states and streets from what they maimed. And got the nerve to say who deserves to be here. Please save that crap for FOOLS.
Sorry I didn't even know who this dude was....shows you either how much I know or how much I care about the movie industry. I heard he was talented yet not happy. My advice is to give your position to those that are next in line. Oops I guess he did, but it didn't have to be the death option. Couldn't he spell s-a-b-a-t-t-i-c-a-l?
FAMOUS TO BE FAMOUS
But at least that dude had talent. I don't understand this famous to be famous sht. Cmon real talented people are struggling to get noticed, while assholes are spread over the media for absolutely NO reason.
FAKE IT UNTIL YOU MAKE IT (VEGAS)
Upon performing with DMC and FLAV in VEGAS, I was taken aback by how the crowd was mimicking every club video the past 12 years. They in my kid's vernacular looked mad 'fake'. Like they sprayed on a club state of being. It seemed like they had to move to the music and the music was not moving them. To me it's the same feeling as the last years of disco. How many years can peeps keep it moving to the same beats? Something has to be new on the horizon. FAKE has been in style a bit too long... Speaking of fake, 90% of all rappers who claim to be a roughneck gangster is borderline fake. Now I know that this is the entertainment biz, and behooves an acting mode, but damn. I'd like to see the rap world really get with the heart of the people.
We need some JOHNNY CASH type cats to get true, or to be made true by testing themselves in front of a crowd that knows well. Too long the thrill of the crime-rhyme has been pushed as fascination to school kids, and the general public as the representative of hip hop. I challenge cats to take it all the way to their real constituency and fan base. To not get locked up short term for press reasons. The cats serving real time are COOL C, STEADY B out of PHILLY, and JAY DEE from the LENCH MOB in LA, all those brothers I know and are tragic cases we ALL need to know about. They would have a whole different thing to tell the public than most of the CRACK rappers we hear on modern urban radio, TV, and especially mixtapes. Real talk means to protect the people and lead them not just lead them into consumption.
WHAT DOES WHAT I GOT GOT TO DO WITH GETTIN?
Last note on me trying to get that DEF JAM gig, I was reading all the responses and I appreciate the public's approval of your fellow enemy. 90%, damn I can see that the people are not blind. But I wasn't twisted I knew this wasn't a public office so the people really don't matter unless they're consumers of the highest degree. When it comes to art nowadays and especially music, people want to integrate their participation into the things they dig. Why would people be fans of a baseball team for 100 years, or there's waiting lists for the NY football GIANTS over 4-5 generations. Its more than just good product, there's interactive consideration and partial participation. The sports world works on that. Anyway the point is that the criteria of the record company head is based on what? I saw on the blogs wondering and basing me on how rich or lack of I was. Let me tell you this. If my position of anything is based on showing off what I have and exposing my personal life, I'll never get anything because you will never hear or see me say where I live. What I purchased. The name of family members. My account. My net worth. If it was up to me my government slave name wouldn't be out there. The answer is that it ain't nobody's business. Just because the masses are trained to connect the collection of MTV cribs, pimped rides, famous to be famous do nothing social idiots, jewelry laden, yacht ridin', caviar and champagne guzzling VIP fools, doesn't mean you'll get it from me.
FAT AND LAZY DJS
Lastly the reason that the music can't levitate is because we have some short termed neglect as far as the level of mobile, club, and especially radio DJs who are supposed to evaluate all the records that come out today. A close source told me his conversations with a radio person had said unless a product came from a major brand it was tossed. The same thing with digital mp3s sent. Today I would think that DJs couldn't have it any easier. So what they gotta go through 250 songs a week as opposed to 50 twelve inch records every two weeks from about five years ago. Like what else can they be doing with their time? I came from a high school track meet where they assembled over a thousand athletes in an armory seamlessly to compete in a myriad of events. Now a DJ can't sit in one place and listen to new music for 3-4 hours in a week. There are 24 hours in a day. Most people have mundane jobs that keep them working 8 hours for 5 days a week. And a DJ is swamped? No excuse, especially for the DJs too big to work. And they're big for a reason. The DINER Cards in lieu of airplay, web, or satellite play have them too bloated, too lazy, and a detriment to the organization of an art form I always considered the parallel of sport. Every statistic is kept to the T in sport, people work around the clock, library systems record every print, audio, and visual in their banks, even retail is detailed in order to sell. And you mean to tell me that a DJ in 2008, on Serrato who no longer or never lifted a crate of vinyl, can't listen to an independent artist or check their MYSPACE page because they consider it a task? Give me a break. This disease of ease has also spread to journalists who claim they can't balance their time. Give me a break. Again it's another reason why the movie and sports businesses whip music's ass, and make tall submit to the standard those industries set.
Out - and may the NEW YORK football GIANTS fold them axis of evil Patriots