In case you’re wondering Silent Jay is one of my fellow bloggers. Not to be confused with Jay Smooth or Jay Electronica, this is another Jay entirely. This one is silent…but not really. You can hear his voice in the video below. Continue reading
Hip-Hop will never be what it once was, there’s no getting around that.
It began as a form of expression that was of us, for us, and by us in many ways that it will never be again.
In today’s world the ideal hip-hop product is not one that rings true for those who shares the artists’ experiences, but one that provides a vivid, cinematic fantasy for those who will never share the experiences conveyed.”
Above is an excerpt from a post called “Rumors of our Death…” written by Jay Smooth and posted on his blog hiphopmusic.com on April 24, 2003. Yeah that’s right, 2003. That’s crazy to me for 2 reasons: Continue reading
Here on sofreshansogreen.com we’re in the middle of Black History Month Quotes and Jay Smooth Quotes Week. I’m interrupting the latter to bring you the words of Harry Allen as part of my response to comments on my post about Tavis Smiley ending his State of the Black Union address.
I made some glowing remarks about journalist Mr. Allen the Media Assassin in that post. For me, what those panels are missing are voices from persons like Harry Allen, Rosa Clemente and Jay Smooth.
Anyway, I have a lot of respect for Mr. Allen and his intelligence. He’s is considered by some to be the only Hip Hop journalist ever, cause he’s that dude. So rather than actually posting the love letters to Harry Allen’s brain that I will never send him with some quote, I’ve decided to post this instead and this is why. Continue reading
You asked for it based on your responses to the random quotes in the upper left hand section of this blog. Welcome to sofreshandsogreen.com’s Black History Month Jay Smooth Quotes Week!
My least favorite trend of recent years is how the term “freestyle” has been redefined as referring only to rhyming off-the-top, which has led to a vehement (and IMO irrational) disdain for performing written rhymes in any cypher or live venue.
I believe this mindset is entirely misguided, and can be terribly unhealthy for the art form.
I think this strict constructionism is often a product of insecurity, especially among younger heads who weren’t around for Hip-Hop’s early days or the Golden Age of ’85 to ’91 (or thereabouts). Without these credentials they need a concrete list of rules to which they can conform, and thus reassure themselves that they are “real” or “true”.
Which isn’t necessarily a bad thing I suppose. There’s nothing wrong with putting together a system that helps you maintain a sense of tradition.
But you’ve got to keep it in perspective. A system of law should serve to protect your freedom, rather than take it away. ~Jay Smooth, blogger and vlogger, on Hip-Hop fundamentalists and freestyling
I had a conversation about this with a friend who wasn’t born in the 90s yet still wasn’t into rap during the Golden Era. She told me in a time when everything is prepackaged, written by a publicist and even reality shows are scripted we want a freestyle to really be off the dome. It’s the only thing that unscripted now in Hip Hop now.
Personally I like a freestyle to be off the top of your head if you’re going to call it a freestyle, however Continue reading
Harlem rapper Charles Hamilton has resurfaced after being dropped from his label last year and of course after several public embarrassments and fails.
He recently released what was called on one blog “a rather lengthy letter” to everyone on the internet. Yes, it is lengthy. Yes, it is very, very emo. [Read the letter HERE]
But I can respect a rapper or any entertainer who says look, in a lot of ways I’m overexposed. In a lot of ways that’s my fault. I can’t stop f-ing up, especially in public so I will take several mental health days and stop this painful spectacle from Continue reading