By Plot Mhako
I normally take a few minutes to think through every message before posting but on this one (last week) I took more time to carefully select the wording knowing fully the possible reactions given how emotional and cultic the constituency I was dealing with would be:
There are a number of things that informed the post & here are some:
1. The need to stir a conversation and bring attention to the ASAPH nomination and provoke people to action whilst creating a domino effect through media contacts, artists and influencers.
2. Addressing the “near silence” and lukewarm reaction to his MTV nomination (which is a huge achievement for the genre and music in Zimbabwe)
3. Confronting a general gatekeeping culture in the music industry in Zimbabwe.
My message was clear and these were the key words : GATE KEEPING, TOXIC, LOUD MOUTHED, A BUNCH, FAKE, HIP HOP HEADS, SILENT, SCORED A MAJOR.
These were the words that most hip hop heads missed and they gave an emotional uninformed response.
The reaction to me vindicated my general perception and assertion about the GROUP of hip hop artists who I was referring to. They are not only emotional, loud but display a great deal of ignorance and shallow understanding of SIMILES & METAPHORS something important in hip hop.
Whilst Hip Hop has gone more & more commercial over the years, the culture remains deep, rooted in protest, speaking truth to power. This is genre i believe we have bastardized by adding a ZIM at the beginning (something a lot do not agree with).
The genre comes with multiple elements and not just music. I have been a practitioner and a promoter of all the hip hop elements for years through different initiatives.
Sadly I see a lot of purists who act cultic with a sense of entitlement over anything hip hop. Like ana Papa they have a “touch not our genre attitude” and at the end of each year massage each others’ egos through accolades and they go in a troll or frenzy depending on who has had their back rubbed the most or rubbed the wrong way.
This is the moment there is more hype and talk about the genre and there are a few “Gurus” who keep winning even when they are putting no work. They feel so entitled and their actions block the efforts and works of genuinely amazing and hard working new cats.
They are LOCAL champs with no recognition or honor beyond the BORDERS.
These are the LOUD mouthed TOXIC, BUNCH of FAKES I was referring to in my post (not an attack on hip hop). Interestingly SOME of them VINDICATED my post as they were LOUD in their VEILED and EMOTIONAL responses.
They literally GUARD the CULTURE but do it under the mantra #FORTHECULTURE. They have assumed they are the culture & they gatekeep it that’s why they dictate “I WILL SCRATCH YOUR BACK IF YOU SCRATCH MINE”. Where is the love? Where is the culture? The opportunity puts the country and the genre on the map.
There is so much dope talent out there, a lot of it new and a lot that quit over the politics and perpetual monopoly within the genre.
However you can not monopolize good content and people’s ears.
New compelling voices will keep disrupting and taking hip hop to the next level.
Keep on voting lets bring the MAMA home.
After reading this post listen to KING PINN’s INAUGURATION released two decades ago!
Until next time… THE PLOT THICKENS!