lilD: Wake up, RapperWritten by lilD | | firstname.lastname@example.org
Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. had a dream. The least you can do is wake up.
The latest trend with Toledo Hip-Hop artists is to emulate the rappers they see on television. Why not? Those guys have everything they want: rented jewelry, sleepless nights and accumulated taxes that equate to more than some people’s salaries.
Oh, wait; that’s the part they don’t see. They think every platinum-selling artist woke up one morning, let all their friends hear their music and somehow got a record deal because everyone in their neighborhood thought they were the best.
Doesn’t that sound stupid?
So imagine how you sound shouting, “I’m the hottest in Toledo!”
This doesn’t apply to every artist here, of course. There are a few artists who are throwing parties to promote themselves, investing in studio time, researching their markets and performing for more than their friends. But the majority of artists here are wasting their time trying to get into a business for which they aren’t ready.
There is no proven formula for “making it” in the music business; however, there are several ways to ensure that this dream never happens. There are entertainment groups in Toledo with an immense amount of talent, but no direction. If your entire group comes out to support an artist at his/her show, but the group leaves right after that artist’s performance, the group will be perceived as stuck-up. Your favorite rapper is Ludacris, but you guys are too good to mingle? Shake hands with your supporters? Watch another artist’s performance? Obviously you don’t know Ludacris very well.
Or are you the rapper who complains about the lack of support in the city? Toledo came together and got B Wills a championship on BET’s “Wild Out Wednesday.” You know why? People support good causes. If you have a mixtape that no one knows about, how can you expect them to support it? You’re telling me your favorite rapper is Talib Kweli, but you expect me to spend $5 on a mixtape that you wrote on in black sharpie? I happen to own every Talib Kweli album and they are all professionally pressed.
Perhaps you’re the rapper who smokes and drinks all day, fornicates with “models” (that’s an article for a different day), and thinks you’ll make it off of talent alone. Of course, your favorite rapper is Lil Wayne. Shocking. Wayne has managed to make drug use cool; he looks like he’s on drugs, yet women still like him; he raps about being high all the time, but he won a Grammy. I guess you forgot that Wayne has been signed to a major record label since he was 14, and at 28, he’s just now getting recognized on a national level. Maybe you didn’t realize that he’s the only artist to stay with Cash Money Records after the original signees left for money issues. Maybe if he spent less time smoking and more time looking over paperwork, he’d be worth more money.
Oh, I know; you’re the socio-conscious rapper, who doesn’t want to be commercial. You don’t care about endorsements. You don’t need a lot of Twitter followers. All you need is a microphone and a group of people to influence. Don’t tell me; your favorite rapper is Nas. You listen to all his albums and think that you’ll get a record deal simply because you’re not begging for one.
Do some research; Nas worked hard to get his record deal and the $55K he pays in monthly alimony/child support should tell you that he’s worth plenty of money.
Instead of “acting” like the people on television, act like you have sense enough to know that no one is an overnight success.
They say if you want to hide something from a black person, put it in a book. Ever heard of Donald Goines? Jimmy Iovine? Kevin Lyles? Guess they were right.