There was a moment when rap music was considered the CNN to the center city. It described the frustrations, the struggles, the truth about how America’s disenfranchised and underserved viewed themselves and their community. It became obvious through the music that the conditions that existed in these communities were created and maintained by a power that was more wretched than any of us could have imagined. The stakes were high that’s for sure and this power wasn’t about to subject everyone to the evil truth. That’s why the dark jedi cloak their faces. Otherwise everyone would be able to see how disfigured their evil has made them. Rap music was similarly disguised from the ghetto CNN into the ghetto HSN.
Home Shopping Network doesn’t offer a goddamn thing that any of us need, but we will buy the shit they sell if that is the only thing they sell. Consuming completes us as Americans, moreso than love and self-esteem can. It reaffirms the notion that we have power over something, anything. I do a lot of my shopping in the 99cent store because that is all I can afford sometimes and because the Chinese got it, for cheap. Rap music is just like the 99cent store too. Nothing on the shelves is built to last. I can’t think of a post 9-11 rap CD that I would still want to bump in my car (fuck you repo man). There was a time when the music wasn’t this bleak, even a BLEEK CD wouldn’t be that bad provided that JAY appeared on half the tracks. I am not an old school head that wishes for the comeback album from the SugarHill Gang. There is official music on the streets, but none of it gets the shine from the ivory tower called Viacom. Check out JOELL ORTIZ, peep KIRB & CHRIS. You should already know about FRANK & DANK, SLUM VILLAGE and CAPPADONNA.
I had such high hopes for rap music and my generation. I feel like we let each other down by not stepping up to rally, or to vote, or to educate ourselves when the call was made. Instead we just shopped and partied. Now I should prah’lee qualify that last statement because I am sure that I don’t speak for all of you. I am as guilty of all the above as anyone so maybe my disappointment is when I see my own reflection. I am as much a part of Hip-Hop as any emcee or deejay that you listen to on the radio. I owe Hip-Hop a debt for my sense of style, the way I speak, my love of art and how I move through the world. Can you imagine what the soundtrack to our lives would sound like without Hip-Hop music? I love acid jazz, but there is only so much acid a brother can take before it starts to eat away your spinal fluid, excuse me, now I digress…
In 1977 GEORGE LUCAS released the first film in his monstrously epic series called ‘Star Wars’. The series would forever change the way that we look at movies. The series is the ultimate parable of good conquering evil, or something like that. It was certainly good art.
There was a moment when I considered rap music to be good art, a weapon for change, and a Force for good…
KANGAY WEST = LUKE SKYWALKER
Does anybody remember when MOS DEF annointed this dude the future of rap music on the Def Jam Poetry show?!? I normally take MOS DEF very seriously, but after that comment he made on this dude’s behalf I think that MOS was on the Kool-Aid. KANGAY ain’t even give MOS no beats either.
50 CENT = PRINCESS LEIA ORGANA
Before you fools start acting up you need to understand that Princess Leia was stronger with the force than Luke was. In the same way, 50 CENT is more influential than KANGAY is. 50 CENT is everywhere, all the time. He is making money off this blog and I ain’t making money off this blog.
The actual reason that I had to make 50 this character though was because just like Princess Leia, he would love to be kissed in the mouth by Han Solo…
NAS = HAN SOLO
This was a no brainer to me. NAS stares out of his Queensbridge apartment window and poetically imagines himself to be a daring, outlaw swashbuckler.
Also, the main reason that NAS had to be Han Solo is because he is married in real life to Chewbacca.
Say what you want to say, at least KELIS is bossy enough to find the humor in this piece of shiite blog.
JAY-Z = LANDO CALRISSIAN
Fuck loyalty, Lando was alll about his business. When he saw an opportunity to come up in the game he took it. DAME who?!? That’s why he made the deal with the Empire to freeze Han Solo in the carbonite. NAS still had some ether left in him so he was able to break free and now he and
Lando JAY are cool again, and its nothing.
GNARLS BARKLEY = C3PO and R2-D2
Did you catch GNARLS BARKLEY on the MTV awards a few months ago? They freaked a set of their song ‘Crazy’ while the entire band was wearing ‘Star Wars’ themed costumes. They’re cool, but they’re totally teh ghey so I had to make them the fag robot couple.
THE ROOTS = THE MODAL NODES
After I saw the ROOTS Crew perform for the thousandth time I realized that these brothers would be the only cats that had a chance of saving Hip-Hop from itself, but that task may end up being too Herculean for even these ultra-talented brothers. In the first ‘Star Wars’ movie when shit breaks fool in the bar and dude gets his arm cut off wasn’t it funny how the music only stopped for like a second?
LIL’ WEEZLE = JAWA
You can’t sleep on these cats from the first movie either. They were the ultimate hustlers because they would steal your shit and sell it right back to you. I imagine that LIL’ WEEZ needs to have some of that scavenger attitude in him right now also since the Ninth Ward is still fucked the fuck up.
MOBB DEEP = EWOKS
These lil’ dudes were all about making music with tree trunks and playing around. Anybody remember Bars & Hooks?
THE JEDI KNIGHTS
The Jedi Knights were the guardians of the galaxy. They used their power to shed light on the darkness. Some would be corrupted by the darkside, but the most courageous and virtuous of them remained true to the Force.
GRANDMASTER CAZ = YODA
Yeah bitches, there is no father to CAZ’ style. Without his ryhmebook there would be no commercial Hip-Hop. I don’t see commercial Hip-Hop as a negative in as long as what you are selling is the truth.
RAKIM ALLAH = MACE WINDU
Even though Mace Windu dies in the series and the God is still with us I had to make him this character since his knowledge of the Force and his ability with it was second only to Yoda. Mace Windu had actually defeated the Dark Sith Lord until he was double crossed by Darth Vader. Draw all the connections that you see fit.
KRS-ONE = OBI-WAN KENOBI
KRS is just as gully now as he was twenty years ago, maybe even more so. When you carry a lightsaber tuned in to the truth you think that you are invincible. That’s why I picked KRS-ONE to play Obi-Wan, also because his mentor SCOTT LA ROCK was killed before his training was fully completed.
As one of the last Jedi left standing Obi-Wan was as much of a teacher as he was still a warrior. I remember reading the ‘Autobiography of Malcolm X’ after being inspired by the imagery of KRS-ONE, PUBLIC ENEMY and LARRY DAVIS
The ranks of the Jedi are far too numerous to name on this site, but I will try to recall as many as possible and describe their contributions to the life giving Force that surrounds us all.
You shouldn’t even ask me because English words do not do him justice.
|DJ KOOL HERC
Along with brother BAMBAATAA, he crafted a monumental art form from literally nothing. The Bronx is still the poorest region in America per capita. The struggle still continues but now it is our responsibility to demand better schools, better jobs and a better life.
Raw, unbridled passion. To this day no one has painted the graphic rise and fall of man as well as ‘The Message’ does. No one dares utter that primal growl either.
THE FURIOUS FIVE
The brothers are the forebearers of the rap collective. Each member carrying their own distinguished style and swagger.
‘Yo! Bum Rush The Show’ was a sonic smack to the face that made the T.I.’s (Trade Federation) recognize the power of rap music once and for all. P.E. changed rap music in so many ways. Their in your face, unapologetic, pro-Black image was real and unfiltered. The only thing that I can think of right now that keeps it this real is the ‘KILL WHITE TEE‘ movement.
|DJ JAZZY JEFF
When I saw JEFF perform with the ROOTS Crew I beckoned him to do the transformer scratch. Too bad I was yelling from the uppermost balcony.
PRIMO has been holding it down for years and he has never compromised his sound no matter what funky flutes or corny keyboard trends are infiltrating Hip-Hop.
|DILLA b/k/a JAY DEE
One word. Genius. He loved Hip-Hop like we all should.
R.I.P. JAMES YANCEY
As the chief architect of the Wu Tang Clan, the RZA found a way to create energy using the powers of The Furious Five, Public Enemy. Poor Righteous Teachers, and Sonny Chiba movies.
THE WU-TANG CLAN
For all intensive purposes, rap music ended after the Wu-Tang. There will never be another collective with the talent, the imagination or the style. The entire diaspora of positive Black manhood was represented by the Wu. Not perfect, but still very positive.
The jury still hasn’t come in on this trio, but I imagine it might not be good. 50 CENT and EMINEM are undoubtedly the most influential rappers to this point, but they are both padawans of Dr.DRE and one of the sacred laws of the Jedi is that no good master can have two students.
There is a character in the ‘Star Wars’ universe named Sifo-Dyas. He was responsible for placing the order for the clone army with the Kaminoans. Sifo-Dyas was under the direction of the Dark Lord of The Sith.
THE TRADE FEDERATION a/k/a THE T.I.’s
The Trade Federation were only pawns of the Dark Lord of the Sith, but he used them to send the Jedi on errant missions and ultimately to their demise. The T.I.s are represented by the executives that run Viacom Corp. They own all manner of media outlets including the big three cultural hustling networks – B.E.T., M.T.V. and VH-1.
BIGGIE and TUPAC
BIGGIE’s influence is surprising considering his abbreviated catalog of work, while TUPAC continues to make records and movies ten years after he was killed. Are either of these artisits to be considered Jedi. You have to decide.
These are the padawans or students of the Jedi. They show a high concentration of the mito-chlorians that signal someone who can be strong with the Force. JOELL ORTIZ, SAIGON, PAPOOSE and YOUNG JOC are some of the younglings that may grow to be strong with the light side of the Force. Let’s hope that is their goal.
Before I close this thought I almost forgot to mention a character that was essentail to the ‘Star Wars’ series. Without Queen Amidala, there would be no Luke or Leia. The same goes for this young lady. How many female emcees have sprung from her womb? RAH DIGGA is certainly the nicest, but no one else can fuck with the LYTE side of the Force.