Healthcare Debate Impacts Hip Hop Artists-many who are Uninsured



RevYearwoodpanel-225Not many people know that reknowned producer J-Dilla who died two years ago from Lupus was uninsured. Thats horrific when you consider he produced multi-platinum selling songs for everyone ranging from Busta Rhymes on down to Janet Jackson to De La Soul and Common.  One would think a man of his fame would be insured like the record label executives who own part of and oversaw the placement of Dilla’s music.
As shocking as it may seem, Dilla is not an usual case. Several years ago the Hip Hop community was called to action to raise money for popular producer Sam Sneed who worked alongside Dr Dre at Death Row Records and produced tracks for artists like Snoop Dogg.  Sneed developed brain cancer and had no insurance. Because of fundraising efforts some of Sneeds bills were able to be paid and he eventually recovered, but sadly his plight was indicative of what so many ordinary folks are going through.
When I think of the untimely deaths of  Texas Hip Hop legends Pimp C and DJ Screw, I wonder if their on going bouts with drug addictions were something that could’ve been dealt with differently with proper healthcare that has prevention as main focus and not reaction which is what happens when we go into emergency rooms.  When I think of legends like Cowboy of Grandmaster Flash & Furious Five, Professor X and Sugar Shaft of X-Clan or Big Pun, I have to wonder if accessible , affordable healthcare could’ve made the difference for them.

Hip Hop pioneer Paradise Grayis uninsured and suffers from type2 diabetes. He walks a thin line day in and day out with his health

Hip Hop pioneer Paradise Grayis uninsured and suffers from type2 diabetes. He walks a thin line day in and day out with his health

The sad thing about the situation surrounding X-Clan is that Paradise Gray who is one of the two living members  left currently suffers from type2  diabetes. He too can’t afford health insurance and talks about the trials of having to go to a clinic wait for hours and he’s not always bale to get ghis medicine. he walks a thin line day in and day out with his health.

He noted that in the case of the late Professor X aka Lamumba Carson, had gone to the hospital 3 days before passing but wasn’t given a penicillan shot which we later found out could’ve saved his life.. 

 In the video we see Reverend Lennox Yearwood of Washington DC based Hip Hop Caucus addressing the issue of Healthcare. Sitting alongside him is Ma Duke‘s J-Dilla’s mother and Phife Dawg of Tribe Called Quest who recently had serious health  concerns that he is just beginning to recover from.

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7 comments on “Healthcare Debate Impacts Hip Hop Artists-many who are Uninsured

  1. Well while i wish them well i do wish they acted like they knew that obama is not leading us to any real health care reform (remember, he is on the hook to the health care lobby for more than $18 million since entering politics!). i hope people are really paying attention, reading obama’s vague and confusing 1000 page bills that say nothing and assure that the same corporations who caused this problem will make even more money by forcing another 10-20 million people to buy their product. there will be no real public option and there wont even be anything that brings us to national full and affordable health care. i hope others will pay attention to the best journalism on this topic being conducted at and i hope we all develop a real movement that will do more than make appeals to politicians for crumbs while claiming to be some “movement” or advocate for change.

    and by the way, i remember biting being a cardinal sin in hip-hop. Sharpton has been saying “james crow jr. esq.” for at least 15 years.

    that said, im sorry to hear about Phife and them.

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  3. ‘Hip Hop pioneer Paradise Gray is uninsured and suffers from type2 diabetes.’

    How come instead of researching how this gentleman and others like them could order their lives to GET care irrespective of what the “government” decides to do ……this persons situation is just used as a way to peddle the psychology of helplessness?

  4. Party crasher.. who used the word helplessness and who said his situation wasn’t researched.. Those examples were cited to illustrate the plight of many.. but if you wanna know Paradise workes 40 + hrs a week on two different jobs.. He doesn’t have health insurance because what little extra loot he has goes to make sure his kids have it….

  5. No , you misread my post.

    The point was instead of just putting on a play to advocate a single payer plan (which in theory I support)…. assume it won’t happen and promote how to get it regardless of what the government does.

    A lot of people complain about not having something when they haven’t even exhausted whats already available – usually because they don’t know it’s there.

    Regardless of how many kids anyone has that still goes…
    And I don’t buy the sob story – if that guy really wanted more it’s out there. No excuses

  6. Party crasher.. I think you mis understood my point.. Nobody is asking you buy anything…nor do we care about your opinion.. If the resources were there they would’ve been exhausted…Obvious J-Dilla, Paradise, Sam Sneed and many more just simply aren’t as smart as you.. Please provide us sob story types some suggestions since you seem to know about the opportunities overlooked by these people, family and friends.. Nice try fam at trying to be righteous.. it doesn’t work.. on me.. But for the benfit of folks reading this thread educate us on whats out there..

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