12 Beefs We Should Remember from 2010

It’s that time of year again where we look back, remember and reflect on what went down this past year- 2010.. For me, there was so much making it hard to put it all in one essay.  But I figured, lemme try and reflect a bit at atime..So here ya go..

Here’s ‘12 Oh Snap, You Remember That Beef ? for 2010.. Some were funny, Some not so funny.. Some we just shouldn’t forget. And just so folks know, because I know y’all are gonna ask,  I didn’t include Oscar Grant vs Police, Shirley Sherrod vs the NAACP or the BP Oil Spill. Those will be for my year end write up.  I wanna go in on those topics in a different way..Also I forgot to include the conflict Bishop Eddie Long had with 4 young men in his church who accused him of sexual misconduct.  I’ll include in my end of year write up as well.. In the mean time enjoy-Enjoy

-Davey D-

12Trae the Truth vs the Boxx. This was an under-reported beef which could’ve and should’ve had far-reaching implications. At the core of  this beef was a nagging question: ‘What happens when a radio station not only decides to ban your music because of a disagreement, but fires it’s deejays and bans other artists who even associate with the artist? thats banned?

This is what happened with one of Houston’s most popular artists Trae the Truth. Earlier this year, he had an argument with an on air personality where she clowned him on air. He clowned her back  in a mixtape and the next thing you know he was banned.

Trae although not happy could deal with it until the station started insisting to local promoters and other artists that Trae not be included on their bills and songs.  Any one caught supporting Trae would be banned from the The Boxx. Several of the the Box’s deejays including popular host , Brandi Garcia were fired for supporting Trae or playing his records at nightclubs.

Such punitive actions prompted Trae to sue the radio station, which in turn set off all sorts of debates about the responsibility of those who control the public airwaves.

Here’s a video of the press conference along with an Open Letter to the KBXX

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4V4m-nXwa9s

Scarface

11Scarface vs VHI Hip Hop Honors.. I don’t know if this was a beef in the traditional sense with lots of animosity, but neverthless it was one that got a lot of people talking in 2010.

Hip Hop legend Scarface decided to address VH1 about their Hip Hop Honors show and how they were going about honoring Southern artists-which was this year’s theme.

Scarface who was to be honored, shocked everyone when he returned his invitation> he got major props from fans when he penned an open letter detailing the reasons for his decision. He felt it was important to stand up for a region that is often overlooked and clowned.  He wanted long term changes not just honors at an awards show. He penned the following words for Ozone Magazine

I was nominated [to be honored at the Dirty South Hip Hop Honors] but I declined to accept because I don’t wanna be classified as just “Dirty South.” I’m Hip Hop, man. I’m not going because I feel slighted. Even though it was a nice gesture, I feel like it’s just a pacifier. They’re like, “Let’s give these niggas down there a pacifier so they can stop feeling left out. We’ll make Luke and all these niggas down there look funny,” you know? “Let’s put a plate of fried chicken and some watermelon and let’s just do some nigga-ass shit.” (laughs) Quote, end quote. “Some nigga-ass shit.” Fried chicken and watermelon. “Shit, the faster we get this over with, the better.”

peep the rest of the letter HERE

10Al Sharpton vs Tavis Smiley: In 2010, many of us were waiting for boxers Floyd Mayweather and Manny Pacquiao to mix it up. That didn’t happen but we go the next best thing.. two Civil Rights leaders, Al Sharpton and Tavis Smiley going at on the airwaves.. Now in my opinion it wasn’t over trivial stuff although some tried to make it so..

It was a spirited debate over how President Obama was handling issues important to the African American community.  Tavis felt the President has not been on the case the way he should.. Al Sharpton who had just visited the White House along with other Civil Rights leaders, took issue with the way Tavis was coming at him..

He felt Tavis was grand standing and trying to act like his annual State of Black Union Roundtable was the be all end all..This played out on the air and generated tons of debate..

Many got sidetracked by the pairs respective personalities as folks weighed in on what they liked or didn’t like about both men. On the flip side, many vigorously debated the hard questions about Obama and whether or not he’s been responsive to Black America.Check out the story and the audio archives HERE-Tavis vs Sharpton

Eventually Tavis held his roundtable in Chicago under the name  ‘We Count’. Minister Farrakhan showed up and drop serious gems about President Obama and how we should view his presidency. He went in on whether or not African-Americans should publicly be criticizing him.. I think its worth a listen.. Check it out HERE-Minister Farrakhan Speaks on Obama

Related to all this,  are the videos put out by two of Tavis running buddies, Professors Cornel West and Michael Eric Dyson. Throughout 2010  both went in on Obama.. Cornel got at Obama for not addressing the poor during his state of the Union address..Apparently President Obama didn’t appreciate Dr West’s critique and stepped to Cornel about that.. Dyson got at Obama for waffling on important issue.. He suggested that he be more like Bush and stop bowing down to his enemies.

Actor Sean Penn went in on Wyclef said he's been MIA for the past 6 months

09Sean Penn vs Wyclef Jean:..Actor Sean Penn is never one to pull punches and he most definitely lived up to his rep  during a CNN Interview when asked about his thoughts on singer Wyclef Jean running for President of Haiti.

Penn went in on Clef and basically said that his campaign was fanciful and that while it excited many of his fans in the United States, there was little excitement on the ground in Haiti because Wyclef had been missing in action for the past few months.. Penn said he feared that Wyclef would be used and become a shield for corporate interests and policies that have resulted in Haiti’s extreme economic hardships which were exasperated in the wake of Haiti’s devastating Earthquake where over 100 thousand people perished  You can peep Penn’s comments HERE..-Sean Penn Goes In on Wyclef

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=a6UK8lf6o3c

Many of Wyclef’s supporters who saw this newscast and immediately accused Penn of being the ultimate Hater. Many  were still reeling and circling the wagons after see Wyclef endure what many felt were unfair attacks on his YELE Charity.

If folks recall shortly after the earthquake Wyclef set up a charity where you could donate by texting to a number. Your donation would be added to your cell phone bill. As money came rolling in there were all sorts of unflattering stories that surfaced that came accused Wyclef of shoddy book-keeping.

He was accused of keeping the money after he did a couple of events and it wasn’t long before  the criticisms levied at him took on nasty racial tones. Many took offense as they saw Wyclef tirelessly working on relief efforts and they came to his aid  especially after held a tearful press conference defending his charity.

Others nodded their head in agreement with Penn because they knew what time it really was politically speaking in the embattled nation . Many knew about Wyclef’s political leanings including the fact that him and his Uncle,  Ambassador Raymond Joseph supported harsh policies championed by former  President Bill Clinton which included the suppression and banning of Haiti’s largest political party the Lavalas and the harsh removal (overthrow) of democratically elected President Jean Bertrand Aristide..

What was really crazy about this situation was Wyclef’s cousin and fellow Fugee member Pras came out and endorsed Wyclef’s rival.. a popular musician named Sweet Mickey. He explains why he was not supporting his famous cousin HERE-Pras Says No to Wyclef Run for President

John Mayer

08- John Mayer’s Racist Remarks.. At the start of the year everyone loved John Mayer. He was a fufunky white dude  embraced by many in the hood especially after he did some skits on the Dave Chappelle show. He hung out with iconic musicians like Questlove and pretty much was seen as ‘that guy’. There were quite a few sistas who felt like if given a chance they would get at him.. Everything was cool until Mayer did an interview for Playboy Magazine and said the following;

“I don’t think I open myself to it. My dick is sort of like a white supremacist. I’ve got a Benetton heart and a fuckin’ David Duke cock. I’m going to start dating separately from my dick. …I always thought Holly Robinson Peete was gorgeous. Every white dude loved Hilary from The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air. And Kerry Washington. She’s super hot and she’s also white-girl crazy. Kerry Washington would break your heart like a white girl. Just all of a sudden she’d be like, ‘Yeah, I sucked his dick. Whatever.'”

Folks were stunned when they read these other remarks:

Someone asked me the other day, “What does it feel like now to have a hood pass?” And by the way, it’s sort of a contradiction in terms, because if you really had a hood pass, you could call it a nigger pass. Why are you pulling a punch and calling it a hood pass if you really have a hood pass? But I said, “I can’t really have a hood pass. I’ve never walked into a restaurant, asked for a table and been told, ‘We’re full

This was all said in addition to him bragging about his sexual exploits with exes like Jessica Simpson and Jennifer Anniston. People did not hold back and went in on Mayer and let him have it.. Among them was author Adam Mansbach who penned an widely read article reminding us that Mayer was no different from Senator Harry Reid who earlier this year attributed President Obama’s success to him not ot having a Negro Dialect.

He reminded us that Mayer was no different from former Vice Presidential candidate Geraldine Ferraro, radio host Don Imus, comedian Michael Richards and baseball player John Rocker along with a host of others who crossed the line and made over the top racially charged remarks. You can peep Mansbach’s column HERE-“And the Hood Pass..

As the firestorm erupted Mayer soon found himself twittering apologies trying to clean things up. He even stopped a concert to let folks know how wrong he was.. Not sure if Mayer got his ‘hood pass back.’

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=npASm6_8vLc

Solar

07Solar vs the World… The untimely death of Hip Hop legend Guru was sad enough. The beloved emcee had touched us all and his passing earlier this year left us all wanting to come together and collectively mourn. Unfortunately that was disrupted by Guru’s producer/partner Solar whose actions and words left a sour taste in everyone’s mouth.

Many were disheartened when a farewell letter Solar produced depicted Guru as someone on his death-bed who was bitter and vengeful. The letter stated that Solar would handle all his affairs control his business dealings. The letter also stated that his former deejay and partner DJ Premier should not be associated with him at all..

Folks were skeptical about the authenticity of the letter  and felt like Solar was out-of-pocket and being manipulative. Many accused him of isolating Guru from his family and was using his death as a way to uplift himself. Whatever speculation folks had about Solar was bolstered by this disturbing video from Guru’s nephew Justin.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1TNkP4pH6-0

Folks were even more disheartened when reports came out accusing Solar of beating down Guru on numerous occasions and that the two were entangled in some sort of abusive love relationship.

Things got so bad Solar wound up going on MTV to deny the allegations..But even more stories came out about him beating Guru including this one from the mother of his child who went into great detail about what she had witnessed between the pair…

Sadly Guru’s death was marred by chant s and rally cries of ‘F–k Solar’. There was even a website set up http://www.fucksolar.com/ which professes to be documenting Solar’s downfall for Guru. The controversy surrounding Solar overshadowed the accomplishments of Keith ‘Guru’ Elam

06Helen Thomas vs Israel... She was considered the Dean of the White House Press Corps. 90 year old Helen Thomas was legendary. She sat in the front row and always asked sharp, pointed questions to more presidents than any other reporter. She was beloved by all the Presidents she took on until a video surfaced of her criticizing Israel..

What happened was Thomas was leaving the White House  after a celebration for Jewish Heritage Day when a reporter caught up with her  and asked her thoughts about Israel.

The feisty Thomas without hesitation said,  They (Israel) needed to get the Hell out of Palestine’.  She continued by saying the Jews that were there were occupiers and they need to go back home to Poland, Germany and America.

Now many of us weren’t clear if Thomas was referring to the settlements or she was talking in general. There was no opportunity to debate or ask. The reaction to her remarks were swift and punishing.

Within a day of her remarks, she was dropped by her agent. Her invitation to keynote at a university  was rescinded. Her book project was dropped. Former White House press secretary Ari Fleischer condemned her. President Obama moon walked away from her and Thomas suddenly retired/ fired from the Hearst Corporation. She was labeled an anti-Semite  and her 57 years of reporting was forgotten about as she was quickly nicknamed Ms Hezzbollah and Ms Harmas. Thomas later apologized for upsetting folks but stuck by her remarks in interviews done after the incident. She said it was true Israel was a bully and was occupier and that any sort of criticism of the country was like touching the 3rd rail.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RQcQdWBqt14

05Texas vs the US History… Leave it to the state of Texas to stir things up in such a way that the rest of the country gets impacted. Case in point, while most people ignored the election of folks to the Texas State Board of Education, a group of right-wing nuts got themselves on there and decided it was time to change things up. They started by proposing to remove important Black and Brown figures like Thurgood Marshall and Cesar Chavez and replace them with folks like conservative leader Newt Gingrich and the late Jerry Falwell.  They removed words like slavery and replaced it with a nice sounding name like Atlantic Triangular Trade. In short Texas decided to white wash history.

Sadly what many people failed to realize was that because Texas is such a large state, the changes it put in text books would impact 90% of the country because publishers would print books based on the huge amount Texas purchases. Related to this Texas Text Book controversy was Arizona passing a law to get rid of ethnic studies and teachers with accents.  Yep this all went down in 2010

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-OUNw6SUt8k&feature=fvw

04- Epic Bearded Man vs Coolio (When keeping it real goes Wrong) … There was a crazy fight that took place earlier this year on Oakland’s famed AC Transit bus that caught the imagination of folks all over the country..  A senior citizen (Epic Bearded Man) 67 yrs old got into an exchange of words with a much younger man sporting braids  (he was dubbed Coolio). The argument stemmed from the Epic Bearded Man asking about a shoe shine and Coolio Man not appreciating the racial dynamics to the questions.. Words were exchanged. Epic Bearded man got up to leave.. but that wasn’t enough for Coolio who was being egged on a young woman filming the confrontation. Bearded man warned Coolio he was one white boy not mess and walked to the front of the bus and sat down in the senior citizen section.  Coolio didn’t head the warning.. He went up to the front of the bus took a swing ..the rest is history.

Coolio did not know Epic Man is also known as Vietnam Tom was said to be former special forces guy who served in Nam who is known for clocking fools including the police.His sister says he wasn’t in Nam.. Whatever the case Tom can fight..He’s no joke and put fools on notice.

After this incident went viral there was all sorts of follow-up interviews Also the young lady who filmed the clip and was seen stealing Tom’s wallet, got hacked and harassed for months … You can peep them here  Drama on AC Transit , Interviews with the Combatants

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wF6W3206l70

03-Dr Laura vs N**gers:  There’s not a whole lot one can write about this incident.. All you have to do is listen to the phone call and shake your head in utter astonishment.. Dr Laura reminded us just how backwards things can be at times in this country.. Her use of the N word 11 times was bad enough. What took it over the top was how dismissive she was to her troubled caller along with her overall analysis about race. Dr Laura basically told her caller there was no more racism because Obama was in office.  Y’all remember this call heard around the world?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hAD-PipXGwA&feature=related

Debbie Riddle

Kind of in the same vein is Texas lawmaker Debbie Riddle who sort of looks like Dr Laura. Whereas Dr Laura went in on Black folks, lawmaker Riddle went in on Brown folks accusing them of having ‘anchor babies‘ and ‘terror babies‘.. Read about it HERE

Anchor babies are undocumented parents who have kids in the US so they can be citizens. Terror Babies are parents who have kids in the US take them back home, train them to be terrorists and then send them back to the US where they can supposedly enter legally and blow up stuff. Her assertions were so outrageous until you discovered that she is hard at work in the Texas legislature trying to pass 6 bills addressing these issues. She actually camped out in front of the capital to be first on the floor to get at these bills the day after the midterm elections

02 Arizona vs Brown Folks (SB 1070) This is an epic battle that is still being waged. Its one that all of us should be paying attention to because it shows what can happen when you get a few racist, backwards thinking people with a pen elected to office.

Arizona Lawmaker and White Supremacist supporter Russell Pearce sponsored the immigration bill

SB 1070 claims to be the toughest law in the country to stop the flow of undocumented folks from crossing the border. There are large numbers of White Supremacist forces behind this bill. Including long time Neo Nazi supporter Russell Pearse who is the brain child of behind this law. He’  successfully fought to ban ethnic studies in Arizona public schools and universities.

Sadly SB 1070 falls in line with Arizona’s sordid history of intolerance. Folks may recall this was the state that vigorously fought to NOT celebrate Martin Luther King‘s holiday. Only after a boycott pushed by singer Stevie Wonder which caused the state millions did they back off..

The passage of SB 1070 set off a slew of protests, boycotts and a number of songs and PSAs from prominent artists like Zack de La Roca, Talib Kweli, Taboo of the Black Eyed Peas, Cypress Hill, Johnny 5, Pittbull,  Toki Wright, Public Enemy and a number of Arizona based artists called Az Artists Unite. Many artists committed to boycotting the state in an effort called Sound Strike. The battle still wages shout out to all who have stood up.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cjsqQvTooNc

Since we’re on the racism White Supremacist tip,  we can’t mention the hostility around SB 1070 and not talk about the drama around the Mosque at Ground Zero. As 9-11 drew close we saw innocent cab drivers stabbed in the throat, we saw Mosque get vandalized, we saw sitting Senators and Congressmen insist that American citizens who practice a religion remove themselves from an area that was populated with fast food joints and strip clubs.. We saw a Christian Pastor named Terry Jones threaten to burn Holy Qurans.

Islamaphobia is something else when it raises its ugly head and we should never forget how it’s close cousins to the racial intolerance displayed around undocumented immigrants. This video says it all

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EwaNRWMN-F4

01Jimmy McMillan and Landlords Everywhere: We figured we end our year in beefs with one that everyone can relate to..NY Gubenatorial candidate Jimmy McMillan showed up at debate to remind folks what the real issue was in the middle of the worst recession in decades.. He repeated over and over.. he said The Rent is Too Damn High..McMillans words resonated with renters everywhere. Did rents get lowered as a result of this rallying cry? Not yet, but it sure feels good to say at the end of the month when handing in that rent check..

Although this is humorous this touched a nerve because it speaks to troubling underlying issues. Many of us had houses foreclosed on. Many could not get housing because of recently ruined credit. In some areas we saw rents skyrocket to the point of being more  than mortgages for houses.. Hello San Francisco??  We’ll leave you with this video

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=x4o-TeMHys0

Bonus Beef: Chris Brown vs RazB: We had already completed our year end beef story and it was up and running when we got this strange tweet from former B2K member Raz B.. It read as follows..

Im just sittin here Thinking how can n@@as like @ebenet (Eric Benet) & @ChrisBrown disrespect women as Intelligent as @HalleBerry11 @Rihanna

Everyone reading this collectively said ‘Ooohhh’ and it was on.. Singer Chris Brown quickly retorted with a series of disses which referenced Raz B admission that he was molested as a young member of B2k.. Chris used homophobic terms terms like butt-plugged and homo-thug.. He also talked about the irrelevancy of Raz B’s career.

Raz B  returned fire and questioned Chris Brown’s sexuality with retorts like;

@Chrisbrown Do you hit your boyfriend @andre_merritt like you do your women?

These sorts of disses went on throughout the day resulting in Chris Brown looking like the bad guy even though he didn’t initiate the fight.  Many have noted Raz B as the one who is constantly seeking attention and by going after the embattled Chris Brown, who tweeted insults long after the initial outburst from Raz B.

Whatever attention Raz wanted, he succeeded in getting it. Ideally Chris should’ve ignored him… By responding, he not only made the national news (this was reported on Early Today )..He also brought into question his use of slurs offensive to gays. He also came across as one who was insensitive to victims of molestation.

Ideally it would’ve been good if the pair ended their beef and turned their venom to people like Fox News pundit Tucker Carlson who yesterday suggested that Eagles QB Michael Vick should’ve been executed.

Perhaps they could’ve went after racist Tea Party members or smashed on corrupt cops like the one who killed Oscar Grant.  Better yet.. they could’ve made plans to do a song together and set an example for young fans on how brothas can work together.  After all yesterday was the 4th day ofKwanzaa with the principle of the day being Ujamaa which means co-operative economics..

Imagine if the pair came together to raise money for those in need? Instead they raised money for comedians, gossip columnists and TV and radio shows who reported on their exploits. The beef between Chris Brown and Raz B was a fine example of ‘Negro Entertainment’.

Return to Davey D’s Hip Hop Corner

Scarface Reminds Us Houston Rappers Are No Joke-He’s the Latest to Speak Truth to Power-Turns Down VH1 Honors

We have to show love and give props to Houston rappers for always stepping up to the plate over and over again, no matter what.

Case in point, when the Geto Boys came out, many did not know  but they would often lay out money and pay for legal counsel of those who were locked away in jail and needed to prove their innocence… I remember doing a show with Bushwick Bill and Scarface and them talking in great detail about the prison industrial complex, the horrors of the death penalty and why they had spent well over 200 thousand bucks trying to free those locked away on trumped-up charges…

What impressed me most was the fact that they were doing this without a whole lot of fanfare. This wasn’t a publicity stunt or anything like that. In fact the way we even wound talking about the topic in the first place was I had asked them about the uproar and controversy around the execution of Shaka Sankofa.

I recall when Katrina happened and interviewing Paul Wall and him talking about the work that him and many of his fellow Houstonian artists were doing to help victims. He talked about the clothes they had donated, much of it new. They talked about money they were raising and how they were doing what they could to make folks comfortable. The list of names involved was a who’s who. It was very impressive. I recall my man DJ Zin doing a number of radio shows from the Astrodome highlighting the efforts that many of the Houston artists had undertaken..

Speaking of Paul Wall we got to give him dap for making a trip to Africa,  learning about Blood Diamonds and then returning to Houston and firing all his suppliers to his grill shop until they could prove they weren’t using conflict diamonds..This was shown in the documentary Planet Bling.

I recall the 2008 election and getting involved in efforts to register the over one million voters not registered in Houston and radio hosts like Matt Sonzala introducing us to everyone from Slim Thug on down to K-Rino who all spoke passionately and insightfully about the day’s political climate and things they felt needed to be done. Artists after artist came through, donating time, videos, music and their likeness for a Get Out to Vote documentary we put together called ‘Texas is in Play‘ . Even though Barack Obama was making his historic run, many of the artists we ran into spoke about local issues and how folks could impact things. End result was record turn out,  all but 4 judges being swept from office and the ouster of a tyrannical sheriff named Tommy Thomas.

Bun B

We saw other Houston artist like Bun B step up. He attended the Democratic Convention in Denver and weighed in on important issues. We saw him recently get down and put together a successful fund-raiser for victims of the Haiti earthquake. Again Houston’s rap community came out in mass to show support..

Over the years we’ve seen artist like Trae Da Truth step up and do everything from visit juvenile halls to put on a festival to raise money and school supplies for kids. Recently we saw him put the gauntlet down and launch a lawsuit against powerful broadcast company Radio One and their station KBXX. This came about because Radio One decided to ban Trae and anyone associating with him after he responded in a mixtape with verbal jabs to being falsely accused by a station jock of ‘attracting a bad crowd’ to his Trae Day community event. Trae was not allowed himself to get bullied by some big time corporate media outlet..

The list of community events engaged by Houston based artists is a long one. The point being made is that many do step up to the plate, speak their minds and try to do what they think is right.

One of the people garnering a lot of attention is Scarface who recently penned an article for Ozone magazine explaining why he wasn’t gonna be apart of VH1’s Hip Hop Honors. Personally I’m  a bit conflicted because I know Fab 5 Freddy who produces the event is my man and he seemed genuinely excited that there was finally an opportunity to honor a region and many of the artists for their accomplishments which he feels are often overlooked.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rvjcaVYJXn0

However, Scarface in his essay lays out some compelling points and left many of us both marveling at his conviction and re-assessing our own place in this culture we call Hip Hop.

Below is Scarface’s article.. Check out Ozone Magazine for more info..

http://www.ozonemag.com/2010/05/13/scarface-speaks-on-vh1s-dirty-south-hip-hop-honors/

Scarface

I was nominated [to be honored at the Dirty South Hip Hop Honors] but I declined to accept because I don’t wanna be classified as just “Dirty South.” I’m Hip Hop, man. I’m not going because I feel slighted. Even though it was a nice gesture, I feel like it’s just a pacifier. They’re like, “Let’s give these niggas down there a pacifier so they can stop feeling left out. We’ll make Luke and all these niggas down there look funny,” you know? “Let’s put a plate of fried chicken and some watermelon and let’s just do some nigga-ass shit.” (laughs) Quote, end quote. “Some nigga-ass shit.” Fried chicken and watermelon. “Shit, the faster we get this over with, the better.”

Honoring [Uncle] Luke and James [Prince] and [Master] P and Timbaland and JD and Dungeon Family is a good thing. I don’t wanna fuck their Honors up. They helped lay the foundation. More power to ‘em. I respect what they do and I respect what they’ve done for Hip Hop, but to put us in a category is disrespectful. Why would you categorize us as “Dirty South”? Why can’t you just honor some muthafuckers from down here and leave it like that? You ain’t gotta make us look extra country. We know where we’re from and we know where you’re from. We know where Hip Hop came from, man. We’re cool with that. I’m proud to be from Houston but don’t make a mockery of my accomplishments. We’re not “dirty” down here in the South anyway. This shit down here probably cleaner than the rest of the country, cause we got grandmas down here. Our grandmas don’t play that shit.

I was a part of the Slick Rick and De La Soul and Too $hort and Public Enemy [Hip Hop Honors]. I felt good about being a part of that. I went [to Hip Hop Honors] when they honored Def Jam because I wanted to be a part of that. I felt honored that they would even call me to do it. But this year, I totally disagree with how they’re trying to categorize us. You know how they make us look on TV? Like we live on the front porch with flies and shit flying around us, with our stomachs all big eating watermelon rinds? That ain’t us, man. Don’t fuckin’ make a mockery of us because we come from down here and you have no fuckin’ idea what it looks like. They’re gonna try to put us with some cows and just make us look fucked up, man, like we don’t know what the fuck we doin’ down here. We’re smart, man. Our life is slowed down so we don’t miss nothing. When shit gets moving too fast you miss everything. Shit’s slowed down here so we see it all.

I come from the era when New York and L.A. had the only Hip Hop, and they weren’t fuckin’ with us, at all. If you think I’m lyin’, check the history of Hip Hop. Try to pull up some footage from the 1989/1990 New Music Seminar. That’s what I base my whole fuckin’ life on: the New Music Seminar 1989/1990. They was NOT fuckin’ with us. We sold records all over the fuckin’ country and New York made a mockery of it. They fuckin’ booed the Geto Boys in New York. They sure did.

Back when Luke had Skywalker Records and J had Rap-A-Lot Records, they weren’t tryin’ to do no South shit. “It didn’t come from New York, son, so fuck that.” That was their attitude. Just because a TV was made in Japan, is it a Japanese TV? Or is it just a fucking TV? If a lightbulb was made in China is it a Chinese lightbulb?

It was hard breaking through. It was hard getting respect from the East Coast. We didn’t get no fuckin’ love from nobody. Fab Five Freddy came down here early in our career to see what we were really about, and I respected and appreciated that. But we been having money down here. We been rollin’ fuckin’ Bentleys and Ferraris down here since the 80s. Muthafuckers ain’t just started rockin’ gold and platinum chains. We had that shit in high school. Shit, we just now started running out of money. (laughs) That’s how long we been had money down here.

Everybody throws up a fuckin’ smokescreen to make the picture look how they want it to look, but I know shit stank. I ain’t no goddamn fool. I was there in the beginning. We were fighting the power for real. Our raps were considered negative rap, and we got a lot of fuckin’ flak behind that shit. And we were just telling the truth. We were under immense scrutiny, from politicians to radio stations to the media. Luke got up there talkin’ about “Pop That Pussy” and had naked hoes on the stage; they were going to jail and shit. The Geto Boys were talkin’ this politicially-charged, racist-ass, system-ran, gangsta-ass dope-dealing whoopin’-ass shit, and it wasn’t accepted in New York.

Eventually New York came around and started fuckin’ with us. But for an East Coast-based show to call themselves showing some fuckin’ love by making a Southern watered-down version of what the show is supposed to be or what Hip Hop really is, man, I feel fucked up about that shit. Because we fought harder than a muthafucker. When [Ice] Cube was on Hip Hop Honors, it wasn’t the “Hip Hop West Coast Honors.” Every part of the ghetto is the same mu’fuckin’ story. Hip Hop is one machine, regardless if you come from New York or Bareback, Africa. It’s fuckin’ Hip Hop.

But that’s just [my opinion], and fuck me. I don’t mean nothing. I’m just a nigga who fought harder than a muthafucker to get our records played in New York and on the East Coast period. And now all a nigga needs to do is fart on a record and it gets played. So it’s fine by me. I’m cool with that. I’m not mad about it, I just feel disrespected. Whoever goes [to Hip Hop Honors], it’s fine and dandy by me. But if you wanted to do a Southern-based show you shoulda got a nigga DOWN SOUTH to do it in the South.

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Scarface is calling it a day-Politics Has ruined the Music Biz

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When reading this article, please pay close attention to Scarface‘s remarks about 360 degree contracts. They’re a very sinister part of the music industry that has really took all of the fun out of making music. The way it is now, if an artist opens up a Taco stand in Botswana, then the record label gets part of his loot. If an artits decides to do a movie, then the record label gets part of his loot. Its straight up crazy and sad. Scarface is only touching the tip of the iceberg.
-Davey D-

Scarface: I’m Done

By Niki Gatewood
 
Scarface

Scarface

Envision a desolate warehouse; everything about this building is nondescript. Let’s call this place corporate headquarters. Inside the hollow doors, a blinding spotlight shines down illuminating a wretched assembly line. There is a listless conveyer belt; it whines as it shoves forth prepackaged stereotypes. Container after container whirs by in an overwhelming fury. Within these shrink-wrapped skeletons are faux Hip-Hop reproductions. Robotic arms line each side of the conveyor belt; they’re positioned to snatch away any renegade instances of creativity and uniqueness that may have slipped past. These distinguishing traits are no longer necessary and are carelessly tossed aside. Innovation and creativity are sacrificed for a mass-produced sound. The corporation gives little yet reaps millions. That’s the cost-effective “Amerikkkan” way. Somewhere a greedy cash register laughs, cling cling.

 
These warehouses are springing up around the nation. Hip-Hop is being hunted and transformed into an empty rap clone. Some MCs, like Brad “Scarface” Jordan are aware of this mutilation. Rather than entertaining the powers that be; Scarface has chosen to remove himself from that particular arena.

AllHipHop.com: With your contribution to the game you have our respect and our ear; what would you say about the evolution Hip-Hop? How would you describe what it was in its infancy to what it has become today?

Scarface: The 360 deal is f***ery. You’re giving up money all the way around. What ever you do the record company is there. That’s bulls***. My advice to any artist is to do what Lil Wayne is doing or what Soulja Boy is doing, maintain the rights to your s***. That 360 s*** is total f***ery. I wouldn’t dare even dream about doing a 360 deal. As a matter of fact, that’s some made up s***; that’s not even in the books.

Well, with any kind of music that you f*** with, you got some great music and you got some not so great music. That’s Hip-Hop, that’s R&B, that’s Rock and Roll—let me give you an example. A Rock guy, his name is f***ing Meat Loaf, right. I think that he’s the absolute f***ing worst! But, people love Meat Loaf. You can think of the worst MC you’ve ever heard and people love it, you can think of the worst R&B singer you’ve ever heard and people love it. So, it’s all in one’s preference on what’s great and what’s not…

AllHipHop.com: What would it take to get you out of “retirement” or this just a self-imposed hibernation period?

Scarface: I don’t know. I don’t like it no more. I don’t like the powers that be at all. I don’t like it.

AllHipHop.com: Are you so disgusted with them that you’ll stop making music, period? So personally, you’ve stopped all recording, or you won’t make another track for the public to hear?

Scarface: That’s hard to tell.


“I think the business side of Hip-Hop pissed me off. You know, the business side, the political side— the business side and the political side of Hip-Hop pissed me off.”


-Scarface


AllHipHop.com: After your work on Emeritus have you made any new tracks?

Scarface: No.

AllHipHop.com: Have you been back to the studio?

Scarface: Nope, and I don’t plan on going either. 

http://vibesource.files.wordpress.com/2008/07/scarfacemp0vibesourcemagazine.jpgAllHipHop.com: No? [stagnated silence] How can you love Hip-Hop and feel like that?

 Scarface: I think the business side of Hip-Hop pissed me off. You know, the business side, the political side— the business side and the political side of Hip-Hop pissed me off.

AllHipHop.com: Do you feel as though you’re equipped as a business man to handle what was going on in the industry?

Scarface: I don’t want to be equipped for it.

 AllHipHop.com: You just don’t like playing the game?

 Scarface: Yeah, I didn’t like playing the game, you know. You got to play the game fair. If the game ain’t played fair then—you could have it all and still lose everything. They don’t play the game fair. You got to play the game fair, man. Any game that you decide to play in life; you got to play the game fair. If you don’t play the game fair then nobody will play the game with you no more.

AllHipHop.com: Is it inevitable for our respected MCs to stop making music because they’re disgusted with the bogus practices in the industry?

 Scarface: It’s so many things on what the industry is. Why would you buy somebody’s s*** when you can download it for free?

AllHipHop.com: But that’s just one aspect. Some of these rappers don’t deserve to get their album purchased when they only have one good track and maybe a funny skit. I know you personally don’t get down like that; but, you have to look at it from both sides. Besides that what other industry practices don’t you agree with?

Scarface: Like I said, I just don’t like the way that these record company owners and executives are playing god with a n**** career.

AllHipHop.com: Why not embrace the indie route?

Scarface: Why?

AllHipHop.com: You will have full creative control; you’d be able to do everything on your own. You wouldn’t have to rely on the puppet master’s approval to get your creativity out there.

Scarface: You know what’s so cold about the puppet masters?

AllHipHop.com: What’s that?

Scarface: The puppet master won’t admit to being the puppet master. That’s what’s so cold about the puppet master. Man, I’d rather not, there’s so many other ways, for me to— I’m so talented in other areas; so, f*** Rap, f*** Hip-Hop! I’ll say it again; f*** Hip-Hop.

AllHipHop.com: But what about your fans; how can you say that?

Scarface: My fans should say f*** Hip-Hop, too. Hip-Hop doesn’t even exist no more. Does it; is it Hip-Hop still? Is there such a thing? Define the word.

“You was proud to go and buy a f***ing Ice-T record— “6’N The Morning,” Power. You was proud to go and pick up A Tribe Called Quest or N.W.A. You was proud of an Ice Cube or Kool G Rap record….you was proud to own that s***.”


-Scarface


AllHipHop.com: To me, Hip-Hop is a cultural element of expression. It expresses lyricism, dance, art; it gives insight into our community. Why do you think Hip-Hop is losing that essence?

Scarface: Any two ways that you get a White boy singing the Blues; somebody’s lying somewhere. You know, the Blues—have you heard the Blues before? For a White boy to put the Blues out, and says what’s hot in Blues, it’s a lie; because, he doesn’t even have no idea. He doesn’t have no idea why this is done and why we feel how we feel. You cannot expect for a 45 year old 50 year old White boy to dictate what’s hot within the Black community.

Why the f*** are they in charge of what we put out? Well they are. But, why the f*** do we allow them to be in charge of what’s put out. That’s not Hip-Hop, man. That white boy is not Hip-Hop, you’re f***ing 50 years old, man. How could you even think that?

AllHipHop.com: Will the public ever reach the point of critical mass to where we will demand that Hip-Hop stop being manufactured to fit one certain sound and fit one certain image? Will a boycott work?

Scarface: Let me tell you what Hip-Hop is [and] let me tell you what Hip-Hop was.

Hip-Hop was The Sugar Hill Gang, Kurtis Blow, Lovebug Starski, and Kool Mo Dee—you know. Hip-Hop was LL Cool J and Whodini, and Run-D.M.C. Hip-Hop was Blastmaster KRS-One, D-Nice, Big Daddy Kane, Marley Marl, MC Shan and Biz Markie.

You was proud to go and buy a f***ing Ice-T record— “6’N The Morning,” “Doggin’ The Wax,” Power. You was proud to go and pick up A Tribe Called Quest or N.W.A. You was proud of an Ice Cube or Kool G Rap record. You was proud to own AmeriKKKa’s Most Wanted; you was proud to own that s***. I agree that 2 Live Crew made a mark in Hip-Hop, you know. I believe that a lot of states in this country have dope MCs that made a huge impact on Hip-Hop. The minute it turned into a business and not a culture it became too watered down. The essence of Hip-Hop is not in the music anymore. The element of Hip-Hop is not in the music anymore.

AllHipHop.com: With that being said, and as a veteran MC, shouldn’t you feel some sort of responsibility to bring it back to what it was? The kids coming up now, they really don’t know any better unless they invest that time to go back to discover Big Daddy Kane, to go back to MC Shan, to go back to A Tribe Called Quest, to actually discover what it was then to what it is now—

Scarface: I really think that N.W.A. made the best Hip-Hop records ever! I mean if you define Hip-Hop like you define the Blues; they made it a way of life rather than just a fad. You know, JJ Fad, MC Hammer, Big Kid Flash— I know you’ve heard of these people, right?

 

“Hip-Hop ain’t no “booty-dew. Do the booty-dew, do the booty-dew—do the so and so, do the so and so-you know. Don’t get me wrong; every genre of music is going to need their dance records… ”


-Scarface


AllHipHop.com: What will it take for Hip-Hop to get to back to embracing creativity and delivering a message rather than being a number’s game?

Scarface: It ain’t no number’s game no more. Nobody has any numbers no more. Hip-Hop is changing; it’s a money thing. Until the power’s that be start taking it seriously it’ll continue to be in the state that it’s in. It’s some s*** that’s out today that wouldn’t have ever made it before the change. I think that today radio and visual played a huge part in what “they” say Hip-Hop is.

Middle-aged black people and middle-aged white people make up Hip-Hop; when honestly, youth is Hip-Hop. I hear some f***ing MCs that will forever go unnoticed because of the way that the game is. [Ed.’s note: Scarface mentioned the greatness of K-Rhino and Z-RO as prolific Southern MCs.] But they always tell us the truth, the story. Hip-Hop ain’t no “booty-dew.”

AllHipHop.com: [laughs]

Scarface: [chants] Do the booty-dew, do the booty-dew—do the so and so, do the so and so-you know. Don’t get me wrong; every genre of music is going to need their dance records. You’ll have to listen very very closely to what I’m saying. I feel like, the power’s that be, that control what’s being heard in black music and what’s being signed in black music, you know, as far as—the people who put that s*** out there, man. They don’t know nothing about our craft and our culture and our struggle.

It’s impossible for Henry Fartburger to know what’s hot in Hip-Hop. It’s impossible, he don’t know the culture, he’s not familiar with the culture, dude. He’s never been to the f***ing hood, unless he signed one of these goofy ass n****s and they took him to out there, on a pass. Them mutha****ers don’t pass through the hood, man. They’re not from there. They don’t know anything about us. They just sign a check. If you ask me it’s a f***ing conspiracy to destroy black music—to destroy the craft. 

http://vocalrebellion.files.wordpress.com/2009/07/gb2.jpg

 AllHipHop.com: Will Hip-Hop preserver and escape this stage that it’s experiencing now?

 Scarface: With the 360 deals in place and people putting out songs that don’t make no f***ing sense—rather than giving the great s*** a chance? Let’s say that Eminem did between 6 and 7 [hundred] thousand the first week. Man, f***ing Eminem is brilliant. That’s a f***ing artist. It ain’t no f***ing way he shouldn’t have did a million or two the first week. That muthaf***er is dope, man. But then you go to what we call that assembly-line Hip-Hop; muthaf***ers is going crazy for that s***. We’re not hearing Eminem on mainstream radio. We only get to hear that on XM. They’re not playing Jadakiss on mainstream radio.

We hear a lot of Wayne, which is good, to me Wayne is one of the dopest artists that is out. What about Outkast? I’m not hearing them on mainstream no more. Are they trying to repaint the picture of what Hip-Hop really is? Are they trying to put another face on Hip-Hop? How could you?

AllHipHop.com: Did these feelings propel you to retire after you released Emeritus?

Scarface: Nah, man. Dissatisfaction, I’m cool. I’m going to have my fanbase. I think it was a lot of bulls*** between me and my record company that made me not want to f*** with it no more, in all honesty.

AllHipHop.com: Is this just a phase? Can you really stay away from the mic that long?

 Scarface: F*** the mic. Man, f*** the microphone. I’d rather watch from a distance.

I don’t want nothing to do with it. I’m done with that s***. That was a phase of my life that was good to pass on. I’m just glad that it’s over. I’m done.

 “I’m done.”

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