I fucking love hip hop. I don’t love all rap music. But I fucking love hip hop. I suspect many people that are celebrating or have celebrated the 20th anniversary of their 20th birthday share my sentiments. I’ve seen that conflict rear its head again with the release of the oh-so-EPIC Straight Out of Compton, a biopic chronicling the, awwww, fuck that shit, you know who and what the movie is about. I loved that fucking movie. I fucking love them people. I fucking love Cube – and his fiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiine assed son. I fucking love Dre. I fucking love Ren. I fucking love Yella (not really, just stick with me). And I fucking love EAZY.
I still remember being over KT’s house listening to Boyz N The Hood, ON CASETTE, with the door locked, under the covers – cuz was there any other way for some pre-teens to be listening to that shit? After one particularly scandalous line, I turned to KT and said “Did you hear what the fuck he said?” Cursing wasn’t new to my ears, nor mouth, but to hear it said so brazenly in the form of music certainly was. And with that prepubescent voice of Eric’s tugging at my heart, I fell in love with N.W.A. Straight Outta Compton, Eazy Duz It, AmeriKKKa’s Most Wanted, 100 Miles and Runnin’, Death Certificate (PERFECTION!) and E.F.I.L.4.Z.A.G.G.I.N., the beloved soundtrack to my senior year of high school. Things happened, people fought, people died, people left, people came – but nothing could take away the impact they had on my life, and the culture at large. Murrica never saw anything like them before. Young, brash, bold, unapologetically BLACK and telling their story in their words. FUCK THA POLICE. WHAAAAAAAAAAT? YASSSSSSSSSSSS! The most dangerous group indeed.
Approaching my 40th year on this thang, sadly and righteously, I still find reason to yell that sentiment. Them boys were SO ahead of their time, so prophetic, so revolutionary, if only they hadn’t called me a bitch 5,000 times while they were introducing the masses to the strength of street knowledge. Cue the conflict. I can appreciate, in totality, their contribution to the culture. But I also acknowledge, in totality, their detriment to it as well. Them niggas done ensured that my grandson’s grandsons will proudly proclaim they a nigga and you a nigga and she’s a nigga, and that we some niggas and then will turn around and ask someone if they would like to be a nigga too. Them niggas done ensured that my granddaughter’s granddaughters will be called bitches, hoes, sluts, cee you next Tuesdays and will likely call each other that, as a fucking term of endearment. They helped to ensure that black women are seen as objects, to be fucked, disrespected, BEAT(s by Dre) and tossed aside – to not even be the sum total of their parts. Ain’t none of that shit cool. And when I think about the effects of this music that are still being visited upon us today, it cuts deeply. Black women and men are at war – largely – with each other. No community can rise with that type of dissention in the ranks. And Old Mya struggles with them attitude having niggas, whereas Young Mya would have just said that Old Mya just didn’t get it. Both would be right. There is no resolve to my inner conflict with these dudes.
One thing’s for certain though, when it’s 90’s hip hop day in the old folks home and the song says “What’s My Favorite Word?” I’m going to scream that shit. LOUDLY.
#StraightOuttaCompton #Rap #HipHop #Movie #DrDre #IceCube #Eazy-E #NWA