Post Malone is wrong when he claims, “If you’re looking for lyrics, if you’re looking to cry, don’t listen to hip-hop”
By Sound Check
November 22, 2017
By Arielle Gray, AFROPUNK Contributor
Post Malone has become one of the most recognizable figures in Hip Hop in the past few years. The 22 year old has sold out stadiums and shows and collabs with some of the biggest names in Hip Hop & R&B- the list is too long to enumerate. So Post Malone’s thoughts on Hip Hop, which he stated in a recent interview with Polish platform Newcome, may be confusing for some of us.
“If you’re looking for lyrics, if you’re looking to cry, if you’re looking to think about life, don’t listen to hip-hop,”Post Malone says in the interview. “There’s great hip-hop songs where they talk about life and they spit that real s**t, but right now, there’s not a lot of people talking about real s**t.”
Someone better come get their boy.
For anyone who has grown up in the culture of Hip Hop, who has watched it evolve and change over the course of decades, know Hip Hop will never ever be a flat, vapid genre. Hip Hop is a musical landscape, like all other types of music, and it contains it’s highs & lows. And for anyone who is a Hip Hop lover, they know that the statement “if you’re looking to think about life, don’t listen to hip-hop” is just pure fallacy.
Hip Hop is transformative in its ability to adapt to cultural and musical change- it was one of the first modern forms of musical resistance that existed for Black folk. We translated all of our daily pain, all of our marginalization and disenfranchisement into Hip Hop. All of this continues to this day.
Post backtracks a little on his first comment and clarifies, “There’s great hip-hop songs where they talk about life and they spit that real s**t, but right now, there’s not a lot of people talking about real s**t.”
White rappers have always been a hit or miss in the Hip Hop industry and if they do make it, there’s always the question of the authenticity of the artist & music. Post Malone, in general, seems to get a pass on the things that he says and his cultural appropriation, including the 2015 incident where a video surfaced of him saying the “n word”. And his comments about Hip Hop & Rap sound a lot like what critics used to say about the genre back in the day, when it was first gaining momentum.
Not only is he egregiously wrong about the state of today’s Hip Hop, perpetuating this narrative that Hip Hop is somehow vacant of true substance perpetuates Anti-Blackness as well.
Hip Hop was discredited as an art form using some of the same pervasive language Post uses in his interview. It’s “fun” but not thought provoking. It brings people “together” but there isn’t true artistic value. Often times, Hip Hop is held up in comparison with other genres dominated by white artists in an effort to discredit it. What’s funny is that Post does the same thing in his interview. When speaking on the music that is life changing or deep, he says, “”Whenever I want to cry, whenever I want to sit down and have a nice cry, I’ll listen to some Bob Dylan,” he added. “Or whenever I’m trying to have a good time… I listen to hip-hop. Because it’s fun”.
I can’t decided what’s more disturbing- the fact that Post Malone gave the message that Hip Hop is lacking in intrinsic value to a Polish platform (where Hip Hop is only just getting traction)? Or that the fact that he’s a Hip Hop artist who is so obviously divorced from the culture that he doesn’t know there’s an abundance of thoughtful Hip Hop?
It probably wasn’t Post’s explicit intention to discredit Hip Hop but to claim there aren’t people talking about real sh*t today means he’s severely estranged from the genre- which is problematic since Post makes most of his coins from Hip Hop fans.
But hey, he’ll probably continue getting views and selling out shows and making albums with Rap artist. What do we know?
Want to check out some “real” Hip Hop artists & rappers? Check out some of our picks below.
Mick Jenkins- “Plugged”
Saba- “Westside Bound”
Nitty Scott- “Negrita”
Earthgang- “Liquor Sto’”
Tyler The Creator – “Where This Flower Blooms”
Billy Dean Thomas- “Bettlejuice”
Princess Nokia – “Brujas”