“Don’t get caught up in no throne/ These devils out here lyin/ Actin like the people ain’t dyin/ They silver and they gold/ they never saved no soul” -Yasiin Bey
The forces of Good and Evil in Hip Hop are at battle again…or maybe more accurately the forces of “Conscious” and err “Unconscious”. Here’s the thing, it’s a fight people like and one the people need. On one side of the ring we have Hip Hop/Pop juggernauts Jay-Z and Kanye West, Will Ferrell, money, conspicuous wealth and questionable values. On the other side we have Mos Def turned Yasiin Bey, Malcolm X, lyrics that reflect the financial situation people who aren’t the 1 percent are in now, and the ghost of Mos Def’s classic “What’s Beef?”
So who the fuck is Margila? Yasiin Bey may know but he doesn’t care cause he’s trying to reclaim his “Man of the People” status. Jay-Z and Kanye’s Watch The Throne track “N*ggas In Paris” is actually so ridiculous a song it seems an easy target (and a device for getting Alec Baldwin in trouble when that’s the last thing he needs!), but in today’s Hip Hop climate people don’t even take shots at the easy targets anymore. Bey hit the dynamic duo in their Achilles heel: Lack of spirituality, lyrics that reflect how regular people live or their pain and political/resistance content. Hard to argue with whee Yasiin is coming from.
“Niggas In Poorest” isn’t as easy on the ear as I would like it to be and yet it’s still music to my ears. Ready for that new Black Star yet?