Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Vermont Hip Hop: Get Over It

May 28th, 2014, and it's official: we're calling it. Here and now.

Vermont Hip Hop exists. It is a real thing, it has been a real thing for well over a decade. It is not a novelty, it is not an exotic species. We do not need to preface every article on the subject with these cornball "believe it or not..." disclaimers about Ben and Fucking Jerrys and Maple Fucking Syrup. We especially don't need to be reading turd bombs like this, from Mitchell Manacek at Seven Days:

"Hip-hop, as a genre, can be polarizing. Antagonists readily downplay its musicality and deride its lyrics, writing them off as promotions of chauvinism, crime and violence — and with some reason. Trap music and hip-hop club anthems are often vulgar, full of braggadocio, and can be downright tasteless. But that is not the case with any of the songs on This Is How It Must Be, the new album by Burlington hip-hop group the Precepts."

This isn't even up to Wikipedia standards. "Antagonists" is a great prop for stating opinions without having to take responsibility for them, which in popular "hip-hop" parlance would be classified as "a bitch move." You know who has a problem with hip hop? David Duke. Bill O'Reilly, Peggy Noonan and Sean Hannity. It's not even like Manacek is stating unpopular opinions -- there's nothing there: it's just terrible, stupid writing.

It also demonstrates a total lack of familiarity with the genre. You're not doing us any favors by trying to frame good local rappers as a "smarter" alternative to some Stormfront caricature of hip hop, one of the most diverse and truly global music genres on Earth. In fact, you are doing the total opposite: you are making BTV look dumb.

Not bad, not "racist," just dumb. Please: stop.

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