The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #152354   Message #3563998
Posted By: Lighter
03-Oct-13 - 12:28 PM
Thread Name: Traditional Music: Where are we going wrong?
Subject: RE: Traditional Music: Where are we going wrong?
> riddled examples of radical politics

Surely you don't mean shootin', killin', rapin', and I almost forgot braggin'.

But you do seem to assume that "radical politics" automatically means "benevolent politics that would enhance the lives of all (or at least all whom we think deserve it)."

Rap (even more than other recent pop music genres) became fantastically popular largely because of zillion-dollar advertising and marketing campaigns aided by cynically eroticized images of the performers (often with harems).

If rap had really been propagandizing some kind of coherent, appealing, beneficial social agenda insistently and repetitively for the past 25 years, I think we'd have noticed some positive results by now. And presumably that would be true even if you mean non-commercial, unrecorded, street-corner "folk rap."

Like other words and lyrics, it basically goes in one ear and out the other, leaving various attitudinal residues. And do you really want teens, oppressed or otherwise, learning their agenda for social change (in whichever "radical" direction you prefer) from rhymers who declaim their love for violence? (Radical neo-Nazis can rap too, though maybe not in Greece.)

I also have a problem picturing thinkers like Jefferson, Marx and Engels (to take the most obvious examples) as choosing the hip-hop idiom to advance their extensively thought-out radical positions.