Tuesday, 26 October 2010
An Open Letter to the Indie Emcees...
Somebody has to just come out and say it: working within the music industry can be totally soul-destroying the vast majority of the time. You invest all that time, energy, hard-earned paper and - arguably most importantly - passion into the sole career that you have envisaged for yourself since way back when. You feel it's both your destiny and indeed obligation to move the world through your craft and are prepared to let nothing deter nor hinder you in doing so...despite the setbacks, which unfortunatley seem never to be in short supply.
It does beg the question, why exactly you bother continuing down this treacherous path. In fact, I've often asked myself that very same question on countless occasions; primarily the ones where you feel that nobody is taking the time to listen to the fruits of all that effort or support an authentic, creative and honest hustle.
Put simply, I respect you and frankly I empathise with your struggle. In all honesty, our jobs (and of course the aforementioned obstacles that plague them) aren't all that different and furthermore I know what it's like to invest every penny you earn from your work straight back into your career only to be overlooked by somebody that can shout their own praises louder or had 'the image.' I've even lost that opportunity or two due to an unwillingness to conform or bown-nose, just like you undoubtedly have along the way too. Most importantly, however, having had those less than favourable experiences that we almost certainly share, just like you I can't help but go back for more every damn time, and why?
Metaphorically speaking of course, I'd rather be a Donny Goines than a Soulja Boy any day. I refuse swap my integrity for a payola job or the promise of a VIP room and a few free drinks like many of my peers and urge you to do the same. Why write this piece? Well, today I was sorely tempted to leave it all behind - as I admittedly have been numerous time in past - but instead decided to leave behind the mainstream and its B.S. for a moment to immerse myself in your music (top-quality indie music, uncorrupted by the influence of the majors or first-week sales).
I listened to The Redland. I listened to Ras Kass, I listened to some Rieces Pieces productions and of course I listened to the very talented Mr Goines; I then thought well if they haven't called it the proverbial 24, then why should I? Moreover, how dare I have the audacity to consider removing one of the few platforms they have to make themselves heard (without signing a cheque first...not that I believe they ever would). Instead, I figured I should to take this moment firstly to thank you for providing endless inspiration through your lyrics and reminding me precisely why I continue to write in this business and secondly to offer you my undying support and encouragement. On a final note, I just hope that my words can inspire you in the same way.
Frankly, we are the future of Hip-Hop and try as they may nobody can take that from us.