The holy trinity of Black consumption is Popeye’s fried chicken, Newport 100s and Hennessy. Actually, I should have called that the U.N.-holy trinity (you see what I just did?).
New York regional rap gets less love on the local radio than Kat Stacks did when she was a kid. It’s fuxed the fux up when you are a stepchild in your own backyard. When your cousins come to visit and get the largest slice of the cake and the what not (are you studying the rap music cliches I am putting out?). The young-ish local sons like joell Ortiz and Joe Budden have had to ply their trade in foreign waters to get the love from the fans they should be getting here at home.
Part of the problem for NY rappers is that no one who lives in NY is from NY any longer. Everyone here is from Cleveland and Boston and every other turdburg in America. Everyone from NY is in Atlanta which is strange that southern music has had such a huge draw across the nation. Is it that all or most of NY’s creativity has migrated back down south? Whatever the case may be, NY is no longer considered the epicenter for the Hip-Hop universe. We’re kind of like a waystation now. Just another stop on the turnpike I suppose. NY is the James Fenimore Cooper service area of the rap game.
Sure we have Sean Price to hold us down slightly on commercial radio with his hardbody anthem ‘Figure 4’, but after P the drought is on. Maybe this is why the XXL thinktank (ahem) doesn’t bother to even look out their window for young rappers. Like everyone else they are looking on the internets. But the streets is where the people’s champ gets it in. The streets is where Vado can be found. What might save NY rap and possibly even Hip-Hop is an awakening to the underground scene which hasn’t left this city. Sean Price and Vado are the proof that there is something going on down there.
Vado, and conversely Cam’Ron, kept the XXL freshmen 10 showcase from experiencing a bit of the industry mehs. Not that the bill featuring Donnis, Jay Rock, Freddie Gibbs, Pill and Nipsey Hu$$le wasn’t a good ticket, it still needed some more ‘zhuush’ to keep the people in the building. All of NY’s transplants have actually seen these acts in their respective ‘hoods but they have yet to see an actual NY rapper perform. What Vado lacked in overall lyricism I feel like he transferred in raw energy and determination. Cam’Ron even put in hypeman work for him which was refreshing to see.
A girl from California told me the other day via Twitter (natch) that NY rap was dead. It figures that she wasn’t at the Highline Ballroom this past Wednesday night. NY rap isn’t dead, it just went back underground.