It’s always fun catching up with Hip Hop legend Blastmaster KRS-One. He always has something colorful and insightful to say when speaking. Some you may agree with, some you may disagree with. No matter what you have to appreciate his passion and confidence..
When we caught up with KRS during the Rock the Bells 2010 in Mountainview he was on his way to the stage to perform the album ‘Criminal Minded’. He did not disappoint. In 10 minutes we touched on a number of topics including his thoughts behind his new book ‘The Gospel of Hip Hop’. KRS noted that this was the Gospel for the new millenium. He says every generation has their Gospel and that he wanted to put forth his vision of Hip Hop and remind the world about its divine aspects. He believes the culture touches on the spirit in ways we simply cannot ignore.
I asked KRS with all the wisdom he’s garnered over the years, what aspects of Criminal Minded would he change?
KRS said, he regrets how people mistook the meaning behind the album cover which shows him and the late Scott La Rock wearing an ammunition belt, holding pistols and having a grenade on the table. He said many thought he and Scott were the jump off for what would eventually be called ‘gangsta rap’ when in fact, they were attempting to put forth a ‘revolutionary’ pose.
KRS explained, that no gangsta would walk around wearing ammunition and holding grenades. He talked about how BDP was influenced by the Black Panthers and Black Liberation Army and wanted that album cover to be symbolic of the stances they took.
KRS also talked about how he regrets the harsh, sexist words directed at Roxanne Shante. He noted that he was young and wild back in those days and in hindsight cringes at some of the things he uttered. He said its something all rappers will go through as they get older. How we express ourselves without full knowledge and understanding can be embarrassing once it’s obtained.
We concluded our interview by talking about President Obama. A couple of months after Obama’s inauguration , KRS came to Oakland and did a wicked freestyle where he talked about the biggest problem the president would have is the power and control of the Fed Bank. Over 100 thousand people viewed that video which sparked a lot of discussion. KRS caught al;ot of heat and was depicted as a hater. Nowadays his insight isn’t so easily dismissed or challenged
We talked about those earlier remarks and pressed KRS as to where he stands now. He stated that he respects the President, but make no mistake, Obama is a politician who runs a government.
“He’s a politician..he’s not your boy. he’s not your man”, KRS said.
He went to add, that we are now in a globalized world with a globalized economy and America has been resisting its entrance into it. KRS said, gone are the days when people could easily identify themselves as a race or religion. Things are changingas we are now in what people will deem a ‘New World Order’
written by Davey D
Here’s the link to the full interview we did with KRS at Rock the Bells.. let us know what you think..
fresh for 2010, suckers!!!!
nice one, Dave.
KRS One is the truth. His mesages put your mind in overdrive.
Thanx KRS One and thank you Davey D.
Good points as usual…
Always on point KRS1!
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“…Federal Reserve Banch that runs society. Got ask the right people the right questions…” – KRS-1.
Now you know we can’t do that because that would be “blaming” and spreading hate. Entertainers like this guy is “not your homeboy, he’s not your man”. He’s an “entertainer”. Listen to how “carefully” how he stated about Obama’s mother specifically for the people who purchase hip-hop albums – now that’s a “Politician”. 🙂
HipHop is dumbfuck purgatory. It’s a subculture that attracts all the dumbfucks of society and bask them them in superficial accolades.
yawn… @ that last comment..
I respect & love KRS as an artist, but just because he’s a legend and a dope MC doesn’t mean he automatically has credibility when it comes to speaking about Obama or national policy issues. He doesn’t know what he is talking about. And that’s not to say that Obama is perfect, there are some credible critiques of our President, but KRS doesn’t have a clue when it comes to this stuff. He needs to get away from those uber conspiracy heads who smoke weed and pop shit in the coffee house or the street corner all day and he needs to read about REAL issues, that require people to understand policies and how they affect people’s lives. Keep making great music KRS, I love you, but don’t speak from some place of authority on politics when you have no authority.
Educated thats a nice tactic.. to some how suggest that someone doesn’t have insight into politics.. Politics is for the people.. everyone.KRS, you and me.. so he has everybit of authority.. I mean who are you? We know who KRS is but who are you? what’s your name? what do you look like? What gives you authority?
What exactly did he not have a clue about? What are the REAL issues? Cmon bruh you can do better than try and play holier than thou..
It’s not about being holier that now, Davey D, if the people don’t agree with you and your hip-hop cronies, you kick them off the site. I got an email on that Rober guy and how you banned him from the site. I see how you playing. You right, Educated Thoughts. This is all propaganda and indoctrination going on on this site. KRS-1 said it best “I don’t care… We taking over the world…” Childish Shit!!!
SMH.. no son thats you Robert.. and every time u impersonate someone or go above board with the racial slanders I will delete.. If you don’t like it ,move on
Call me what you want, Davey D, just spell my name right. I got the email on how you be playing our folks on here.
Robert its not an email..it’s plainly stated for all to see..
You’re correct Davey, politics is for the people and I don’t have more authority than anyone else, but the same goes for KRS as well. And I didn’t mean to come off holier than thou, but just because he’s a legend doesn’t mean he knows what he is talking about, same goes for politicans as well…just because they are in office doesn’t mean they know what their talking about either. More than come across holier than thou I meant to bring KRS’s opinion back down to a level playing field because he’s a normal person, just so happens to be a hip-hop legend. But I digress, real issues to me aren’t about complaining about New World Orders and all that stuff, its about tangible, pragmatic ways to improve lives. So for example, what is KRS’s thoughts on how we can write comprehensive clean energy legislation AND get it passed through Congress, how do we put together a jobs bill that can jumpstart our economy, etc. Throwing stones at those in office is fine, it keeps then on their toes (hopefully)…but what the conspiracy theorists don’t understand (whether they are right or wrong) is that we have to figure out a way to work with what we’ve got and the way the system currently is. Yes we want to change the system, but for the time being let’s figure out pragmatic steps to change what we can.
I just wanna give props to Davey D for pushing “educated thoughts” back.
Obama is a war criminal he tripled the occupation of Afghanistan, opposes habeus corpus in Afghanistan, has bombed pakistan f or lies and killed thousands of people-again for lies, has attacked Yemen, for lies.
Sorry you can’t blame republicans for that. The Democrat party is the other wing of the one large war party and Obama is a war criminal. Those are actual facts.
A pragmatic thing to do would be to boycott the War Party’s which are unredeemably criminally culpable. Federal discretionary spending over 50% war spending with 4.5 trillion being stolen from “trust funds” such as social security and civil service union pensions. Social security has never run a deficit so when you add in the interest paid on the debt you can say about 80% of the current federal debt of 13.3 trillion is due to war spending. Almost all of it for lies, lies and damn lies.
Voting for the two wings of the one war party is not a strategy of resistance it is a strategy of enabling the one War Party (Democrat + Republican) to continue murdering millions and sending us the bill for trillions.
Anyone defending Obama is supporting a war criminal – fact. The man needs to be caged and rot away for life after he is convicted. Those with good sense already know this we just have to wake up the mentally deaf, dumb and blind and take action now!
DonJuan3 — All that is cool, you hit good points, and I’ve heard that all before, but the fact is most people don’t care or they don’t believe that stuff, or they’re just Republicans who say the complete opposite of you which is Obama is a socialist, an undercover Muslim “extremist”, and “soft on terror”, etc.
I don’t think boycotting the entire political process is the pragmatic thing to do, in fact I’d say its detrimental because it leaves a vacuum for the radical right to come in and set their agenda. Say what you want about Obama, but he’s a vast improvement on any Republican administration. And all the coffeehouse, street corner talk can be enlightening, but while we’re debating things on message boards real decisions are being made in Congress and the White House, the question is whether we try to get candidates on the ballot who represent our interests or let Glenn Beck and Sarah Palin push their agendas.
Educated for years.. KRS was in the forefront of solving problems..He often did it when folks were too busy telling us how rappers dont know anything while they themselves were screwing us..
For example, Stop the Violence movement was an incredible initiative.. dealing w/ Black on Black crime.. He teamed with the Urban League..
HEAL.. was an educational program he started to fix our crumbling education system.. Human Education Against Lies. He did the Hip Hop and spirituality album.. Spiritual Minded where he tried to bring a more direct connection btwn Hip Hop and God.. He brought almost 400 artists to the UN and had 38 delegates from countries all around the world to sign declaration for Peace and declare Hip Hop a culture..
He held a conference one year after 9-11 to discuss issues around Voting and political participation and foreign policy..
I can go on and on..what more do you want the brother to do? is it not enough, should we toss in his 5 books or the rigorious college lecture circuit or the speakers burea he established with pioneering rappers?
Over the years I’ve had lots of debates w/ KRS but I would never ever accuse him of complaining and not trying to solve the problems he complains abt Nor would I simply write him off as a conspiracy theorist..
Pragmactic steps?? How about taking some bold ones toward a vision you sincerely believe in.. Work with Congress? write bills? Hes had those sit downs and concluded that a community that identifies with Hip Hop should move forward and establish a path, nation and reality that works for them..
Does it give him authority? maybe maybe not.. what it does demonstrate is that he has a solid constituency that he regularly builds with. he has and is apart of an organization that attacks problems confronting their community.. At what point do we see that as a a good reason for him to weigh in and offer an opinion when asked.. about politics..
KRS is a legend for a reason.. he put in lots and lots of work..
Educated in response to debating on message boards.. u can do both.. U hone ur arguments share opinions and then u put them into action..I would challnge you to show us a path..provide some links.. numbers suggested reading material etc.. What are the action steps?
You make good points Davey, I’m well aware of the Stop the Violence movement and some of the other things KRS has done, although not all of what you mentioned, so thanks for enlightening me. And yes he has a right to weigh in, everyone does, I just say it doesn’t make him correct, or that he knows more. I disagreed with his opinion, not that he has no right to an opinion.
You make a good point on your last comment, and I whole heartedly agree that the internet/message boards, etc puts the power back in ordinary citizen’s hands and allows us to share knowledge and build. But like you said, the key word is action. We saw how Obama was able to utilize his online movement to organize in the real world as well. He was able to succeed because he mobilized the people and put it into action. So whether we agree with him or not DonJuan3 — that’s cool, but I would encourage you to NOT withdraw from the process, but use your energy to actually become more involved and build a movement and support candidates that represent your agenda. I read this quote once and I really think its true: “The death of democracy is not likely to be an assassination from ambush. It will be a slow extinction from apathy, indifference, and undernourishment.” I encourage you to stay involved in the process, and while I may not agree with all your saying, or your stance on Obama (I volunteered for him and still believe in him), your obviously an intelligent brother and so withdrawing gives just a bit more power to Fox News and their ilk.
Davey, in terms of suggested reading material, I think this book is pretty insightful:
“Rules for Radicals: A Pragmatic Primer for Realistic Radicals”: http://www.amazon.com/Rules-Radicals-Saul-Alinsky/dp/0679721134
I also think this article frames why I think that while we may not like the dirty sport of politics, we have to engage, which sometimes means making compromises and tarnishing our shiny purist cloak of armor:
Educated I have not withdrawn.. However, i may not vote for him.. and I say I I say those folks who feel like key issues were too severly compromised..The make up of this country is interesting, many people have come from places that were harsh.. the decline of the middle class doesn’t impact them bc they come from extreme poverty.. So in many ways a GOP or Dem makes no difference.. They are used to doing without, living 10 to a house and going through the storm..
We also have a growing class that is quite willing to shoot it out in some sort of wreckless martydom. This impacts us all especially if folks on our political spectrum bow out.. For example, this situation with Brown folks who hate what is going on with immigration. What happens if they bow out and they’re the margin of difference.many are willing to make the sacrifice to send a message.. Listen to us.. Others like me and you arent so willing to go down that road..
KRS is willing to go through the storm.. hence part of our task is to find out how to connect folks and get key issues addressed..What does it say about our country that folks are looking to be a country within a country?.
I wasn’t referring to you about withdrawing, I know you’re highly involved, I was speaking towards DonJuan3 because he mentioned boycotting the process and sitting it out.
But yea, I hear you. I think for various reasons re-building at home will be a multi-generation project…due to so many people being imprisoned, communities torn apart, lack of support in education, general apathy, and so on…the foot soliders who can make a difference, and many who are descendants of those who were active in real movements such as the Civil Rights movement, simply don’t care anymore. They have the energy to invest in banging on eachother, it just needs to be re-directed on a different path. On a social level I think we need a patchwork of mentoring programs in inner cities and education reform to build the next generation of leaders who are socially aware and savvy enough to make the change. And somewhere a long the line we have to figure out how to silence Fox News, which to me is most frustrating because of their growing influence.
Actually, that just reminded me. I recently read “Whatever It Takes” which was a really great book about Geoffrey Canada who is the founder of the Harlem’s Children Zone. His philosophy is that in order to really have an impact on children from neglected neighborhoods you can’t just expect school to do it, simply because they are only in school for a few hours a day. His idea is to literally take them from the cradle to college in a series of interwoven steps to make sure they succeed….so before they are even born they have support classes for the parents (chosen by lottery) teaching effective child-rearing practices, then when the kids are born they go to “baby college,” then a pre-kindergarten program, then the Harlem Children’s Zone charter schools that he runs, all the while having tutoring and after school programs to guide these kids along the way. Fascinating stuff, I highly recommend it, here is the link: http://www.amazon.com/Whatever-Takes-Geoffrey-Canadas-America/dp/0618569898
I’m curious to hear your thoughts on Wayne Madison’s latest article on Obama
Makes you wonder what kind of single mom would move her 6 year old kid from Hawaii to a country where a CIA backed military coup had just killed (depending on who you talk too) anywhere from 1-2 million people and that Obama’s step father was one of the more high ranking generals in that fascist coup (The general that seized power when on to become Indonesia’s president for the next 31 or so years. Say what you will about fascism, but at least it provides some job security for those at the top of the food chain)
I don’t blame Barry Soetero at all for those actions, when you’re 6 years old you really have little say in how you live your life, but what kind of single mom would move her kid from paradise to a land of genocide. Yeah, that seems like a great place to raise a kid.
That and the fact that Obama’s step dad was a high ranking general in that genocide and I never heard about it till now? Really curious to hear your thoughts on the matter.
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With regard to Divinity, and my guru, the Teacha, Lawrence, he teaches that dogs are attracted to dog reality, and birds to bird reality, and that everything is encrypted with meaning.
To utter truth blatantly to other rap artists is Divine.
People exploit him (HIP HOP), and then he apologizes when it is not necessary.
Scott Sterling was a counselor and no friend of his, and shante is a doctor. Both occupations fall under dog and bird reality.
His wife on paper is a product of queens and was inkin deals in the mainstream with fifty the drug dealer.
Hiphop will repeat it success by dissin all partcipatin in tryin to be him.
Scott is lost in the wind…so is the fat bitch ramona scott la rock…
Kris is God, and he is Divine and special. Rap music are the traitors.
I hope everyone accepts this truth less they be dedtroyed by their evil intentions and dedperation.