Not in the mood to type much tonight, but after relistening to some of the Rihanna songs posted up on here earlier, I’m moved to state the positive side of gangster rap (after criticizing it numerous times on here) in terms of ways we have benefited from exposure to it.
The main thing is instilling a sense of rebellion and questioning authority. That actually I continue to consider a valuable contribution from rap and hip-hop in general. Can call into attention the corruption of the “powers that be” as well as our own corruption in choosing to milk the System in whatever ways. That’s useful, IMO, to get people thinking about that sort of thing, questioning this reality and what we’re told and how shit breaks down across various socioeconomic lines.
But even when a rap song doesn’t appear to advance that agenda, the aggressiveness of the tunes still can help stimulate that inner angst and bring it to the surface. Because we all know we’re experiencing it, just apparently manifests as anxiety and depression when suppressed. A whole lot of us are not satisfied with what’s been presented to us as the new status quo. People are falling between the cracks, but more than that, we’re all sacrificing our freedoms to this whole new way of life, unprecedented in all of human history — yet we’re acting like we’re on autopilot more often than not and accepting “official” and “expert” narratives without taking time to contemplate deeply for ourselves.
I do. It’s a favorite pastime here. Just what I’m noticing in most folks I encounter out in this great big wilderness we’ve constructed into a concrete jungle society. Best of luck with this phase in the game, folks. Won’t pretend I can adapt to all that is confronting me. Likely can’t. C’est la vie. Telling it like it is there. Blame lack of ambition. That’s fine. It’s more than that, but I’m thoroughly used to how I tend to be perceived by others.
Anyway, stimulating our aggression can have both positive and negative consequences. All depends on what we decide to do with it. And that is impacted by our programming. Input comes from everywhere. No one is immune. But sometimes arousing anger is useful and needed, very necessary. Keeping that spirit alive and appreciated has both its benefits and drawbacks. I understand however many out there desire a world where violence is eradicated and peace is somehow widespread installed, but the way people envision going about bringing that reality into being is what winds up being most troubling. Won’t work as their logic leads them to oftentimes believe, this much I can just about guarantee.
Welcome to the mass of paradoxes known as human life. Have fun sorting out this tangled web. None of us probably ever will be able to. I guess the trick is to not let it drive us too nutty in the meantime. Life has its gifts and blessings — always important to keep that in mind too. Existence is about taking in perspectives. That appears to me what it all ultimately boils down to, fundamentally-speaking. Learn from what we can in terms of navigation and according to what we desire, where we opt to steer ourselves. That’s an individual quest and cannot help but be so. Calls on us and asks of us, whether we choose to heed it or not. That’s what I’m wrestling with currently anyway.
But I am reminded of so many enjoyable rap songs, even the ones that came to feel like guilty pleasures. Walked away from plenty of it and haven’t cared to listen to much new stuff coming out. But still. I can appreciate the value where it’s evident. Conjuring up the “bad motherfucker” state of mind is sometimes necessary and worthwhile. lol Sometimes we need to tap into that part of who we are, whether to defend our interests or those of others we care about, or to reject bullshit we see going on. To take a stand. To say “Fuck that!” Not playing the game the way someone else might envision. Stupid to play it that way. Go black market if you need to. Just go entrepreneurial and I’m happy for ya. Do what you need to do.
There are a bunch of “scripts” out here circulating that influence our thinking and impact our modes of action. Get into our heads and convinces us of wrong-headed shit, no matter how good the intentions may be of those who push them. People tend to believe what they hear repeated to them long enough. And that brings us to the downside of too much of gangsta rap’s lyrical content. Unfortunate how much of that turned out. But that’s a topic for another time. Said what I came to say here tonight.