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The Changing Face Of Hip-Hop: SPIN’s Rap Issue


I had a big part in putting the hip-hop issue of SPIN together and I’m really proud of it. It’s online now and in stores starting 11/22. My essay is an attempt to explain what the hell is going on in rap in 2011 thanks to the Internet. Cast of characters: Danny Brown, A$AP Rocky, Big K.R.I.T., Curren$y, Lil B, Yelawolf, Odd Future, Kendrick Lamar, Cities Aviv, Main Attrakionz, Stalley, Clams Casino, AraabMuzik, and DJ Burn One. There’s also David Peisner on G-Side, and Julianne Escobedo Shepherd on Odd Future. Read it and maybe even buy it!

Written by Brandon

November 17th, 2011 at 3:58 am

Posted in Spin

5 Responses to 'The Changing Face Of Hip-Hop: SPIN’s Rap Issue'

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  1. This would have been a pretty good and helpful piece for people like me who don’t follow rap closely anymore if not for (a) your penchant for using your dumb made up buzzphrase in every other sentence, and (b) your random pontifications about whether this or that rapper is “SO NEW UNDERGROUND” or “SO TOTALLY NOT NEW UNDERGROUND.” I was particularly amused to learn that rappers talking about their “movement” or plans to become style icons are delusional and SO TOTALLY NOT [meaningless moniker you made up]. Also, rappers who are popular enough to get major label deals rather than relying on “measured self-sufficiency”/”independent, black ownership”/”out the trunk distribution” are so totally not teh thinkpieceism. Not that I think ASAP Rocky is an awesome rapper or anything, but as major-label rappers go he is actually A RAPPER, unlike, you know, Drake, and inasmuch as Peso et al. are pretty cool songs, holding his record deal/optimistic predictions of future non-poverty against him is a dumb rap version of indie cred mixed with this condescending, arguably racist “OMG the middle-class unglamorous blacks in G-Side are so much more authentic blacks than someone who gets lots of money from the nefarious industry.” So I thought this piece was really stupid compared to your usual work (to the point it’s hard to believe you wrote it), which isn’t dumb, just super half-baked, but perhaps working for an industry mag has caused you to absorb industry mag tropes, like, “the poorest artists who do the most shows in the randomest little places and pay lots of dues to get on are the most authentic and bestest.”


    18 Nov 11 at 5:57 am

  2. I mean, I think this is the sort of stuff I’ve been yammering about for a while now, so I’m kinda surprised to see you say it’s not characteristic of my writing. Also, what mainstream magazine pushes “poor” non-mainstream artists? Your point is muddled, dude. I also don’t think these guys are more “authentic” and certainly didn’t use that word. I think you probably have some valid critiques in there somewhere, and if you read me, you probably know I’m more than willing to engage with readers, so like, chill out and try again?


    18 Nov 11 at 6:09 am

  3. I wasn’t sure how this works, but I get it now, Thanks for the info!

    Nestor Darnell

    19 Aug 13 at 6:29 pm

  4. Hello Kero One!I’m not a DJ or a producer, but an honset fan.Hiphop was a little agressive for me until I came across your music. It’s really lovely.Where do you get your inspiration?Any chance I can see you in Korea?Love your music!Regards,Sandy


    4 May 14 at 1:27 pm

  5. Hip Hop bands remind me of reniliogs.They all swear they are the only legitimate ones and everyone else is a sellout to whitey or the manthey are all equally preposterous, sound exactly the same, and their disciples all argue about which one is the great 2%


    19 Feb 15 at 2:34 am

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