2021 has been quite the year so far for rappers every time you look up one is being arrested for something. Quite of few are ether locked up awaiting trial or out on bail if they are lucky.
Yes, I may be an old lady now, but Hip Hop raised me. Rappers going to jail are nothing new….but this seems to be on a scale I have yet to witness….just like the trend of rappers being murdered at an alarming rate, rappers are going to jail at a seemingly high rate as well.
So yes, I will be dusting off this Sociology degree but more importantly, I will be injecting some of my personal insight to answer a burning question, is going to jail the cost of fame for the new age rapper?
Does that seem like something you may be interesting reading as I explore this topic? Well keep reading because I’m ready to start going in……..
Pooh Shiesty is one of the ones on top……
Pooh Shiesty is a cautionary tale if I ever saw one. First of all, I pray he gets out of the mess he is in. I for one would never want to see a young man rot in prison when he could be out doing something productive with his life. Pooh Shiesty was at the top of the rap game when the feds arrested him on federal charges.
Did you read that? This man had the top rap song when he was taken off the streets…..
So we just assume that rappers have money that is long….but when a lot of your money comes from touring or doing shows, everyday you sit in jail that long money becomes short really quick. So imagine having to do an untold amount of time away from your craft?
Then what? How do you support yourself? If the motivation is to have fancy things and live well, doesn’t it defeat the purpose of rapping if you end up destitute and broke? Well if you are incarcerated that does not equate to a fabulous life of a rapper.
The Motivation to Rap……..
Let’s first remember what is the usual reason a person would even think to start rapping? Well let them tell it, most new age rappers rap about how they started from the bottom and now they are at the top. Well most rappers do not start off living in the lap of luxury; they grow up usually poor and in dire circumstances.
What does that mean?
When you grow up seeing other people who were in dire circumstances, such as yourself, you start to want to seek a way out. And when you see a way out is rapping, then you start to see rap as a way out.
Now we are not talking about rappers like Will Smith, who left MIT to pursue a career in rap, we are talking about individuals who grow up on welfare or in broken homes….not that Will Smith had it easy…..but Pooh Shiesty represents the rapper that had to get it how they live. And how does the new age rapper live? Well according to them? They live hard lives and have to get their wealth in the streets…….
But We Have Seen This Before…..
I wrote a post about seeing things in Hip Hop repeat itself and its strange to me that the new age rapper can’t seem to figure it out……we continue to see the same trends in Hip Hop keep repeating itself but each generation think they are doing something new.
Well if someone went to medical school, became a doctor and left that profession to be a rapper then we can say we have seen something new, if a bunch of rappers follow suit. Could you imagine that being a trend?
How is having the profession of a street pharmacist then turning into a rapper a new thing? Or, being a stripper and turning into a rapper or a gangster turning into a rapper…..get my drift? We saw this over and over again in past generations of Hip Hop.
Yes, you happen to have the occasional middle class kid busting through in rap…..but the trend stays the same and the trend is to be as negative as can be. And what is surprising is that so many of the younger generations think this is new to Hip Hop.
They think this is the first time other rappers have disrespected their dead opposition…..they are surprised when they in turn die and are then in fact disrespected even worst…….the news tells you this is a new trend and you all fall for it. There is nothing new about “dissing your dead ops” and trust me the consequences are always the same.
Karma comes calling and she is a b***h, and if you don’t believe me ask anyone who knows. And if you don’t believe them learn your Hip Hop history…..it’s been done before. Karma is always waiting to serve someone who doesn’t learn from the lessons of others. She doesn’t like to be taken for a joke and in the end she will have the last laugh.
So if it seems like I went off on a tangent if you stay with me I will tie this all in. So what was the question I was answering?
Why are so many new age rappers going to jail and is that the cost of being a famous rapper?
Well let’s identify the types of rappers that are falling into this trend. They are young, male and Black. And therein is where my Sociology degree kicks in and I become the bootleg Sociologist……
This is a trend that is affecting more than just rappers…..
Young Black men are going to jail……rappers or otherwise. But here’s the thing about rappers……..
The Fans Are Watching Instagram And So Are The Feds……
This new age generation lives their life on social media. If they ate a sesame seed muffin, went on a job interview or had a fight with a coworker, guess what? They are sure to do? PUT IT ON THE GRAM…….
And what happens when rappers “flex” for the “Gram”? The federal authorities are watching them and taking notes. They feds are on social media scouring the latest rap songs for clues to all sorts of cases. And rappers are not making their lives difficult.
The new age rapper is quick to get into some drama and post it for the world to see. But what is disturbing is they give so many details to some crimes they may or may not be involved in. They call it “self snitching” but some of these rappers not only tell on themselves, but they “dry snitch” on others as well.
There is another added element that people seem to forget. Its finicky, and
The fans are the ones who decide who makes it big in rap. It is a lie and a trap for a rapper to believe the only route they can go is to start making “drill music” or “gansta rap” or any other genre of rap that brings the attention of law enforcement.
Drake is one of the biggest to ever do it and he does not have to go the route of NBA YoungBoy who is another rapper I pray sees the streets again. This young man has children to support and nurture and guide. Every day he sits in jail, his kids are missing his presence, and not just financially. This man was active in his kid’s life.
I rather be dead than spend my life locked up…….but do I understand the motivation a young rapper will have to please the fans? The easiest route in Hip Hop is to please the fans. And while yes there are those rappers who really do get it how they live. And when they put it to a beat…the fans give them props. And just that EASY, they start to shoot to the top…….but what does that easy shot do when it’s gotten by channeling negativity? It brings negativity. Yes negativity, just like positivity, will bring the attention of the fans…..
When In Rome……..
So once again there is a trend because people see how easy it is to go the negative route and get the recognition which leads to money and fame and it doesn’t take much to go viral if a rappers does something negative, just as they would if they did something positive but the difference is staying power.
So what happens to the rappers that go to the negative route? They bring the attention of the feds…..and the other rappers who may be just living the rap lifestyle they get caught up in the drama too. So even if you were a rapper going straight you may be falsely accused, or harassed just because you are young, Black, male and a rapper. Why because the feds are watching…..and assuming that you are all the same……
So why not switch it up? Rappers can start a new trend……get a medical degree and then be a rapper. Be a scientist and then become a rapper. But that’s not a trend that will catch on. Why? It’s so much easier not to change. If you were selling drugs or doing drive by’s that’s all you talk about. So even if you did change, your music doesn’t reflect that so your circumstances do not reflect that. You end up in jail where you would of anyway…….just like the other rappers before you.
Can I get a round of applause? Did I give another plausible, possible theory to answer the question? Well let’s just do a little bootleg review, or as the old school teachers used to say, “Let’s check our work. Retrace our steps and see if the math adds up…..”
So the conclusion I came up with was no, you do not need to go to jail or be involved in criminal activity to make it in the rap industry. It is just an easy way to become famous but it comes with a cost and brings the scrutiny of law enforcement…..and while yes, there are those rappers who the streets call, not all will answer but they will also be affected. I wish all the rappers who are fighting cases the best…..
But what do I know? I’m just a bootleg sociologist who nobody will listen to so I started a blog……….
What are your thoughts?
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