Thursday, June 11, 2009

Dead Rappers=Dead Presidents

It's weird how fiscal (someone else's) death can be in the entertainment biz.

Without some blowhole murdering Tupac Shakur, how successful would Master P* have been? He literally based the first half of his rap career on dedicating just about every one of his mediocre songs to Pac's memory. The second half was spent pimping out his family members & giving out record deals like so much free cheese. It's still unclear to me if the two ever even met. Yet, Percy Miller shouted him out intently, & often, like the two had been college room mates. Or prison cell mates. & P wasn't the only dude to benefit from a posthumous Pac. There was actually a time in (west coast & down south) Hip Hop when even the slightest indication of Tupac influence meant guaranteed success. If he IS in a grave, he's rolled over no less than 500 times by now.

Take rapper Fat Joe*. A relatively obscure hip hopper from the Bronx, NY in the mid-90's. If it weren't for my insatiable love of the culture, I wouldn't have known who he was either. He had a couple of bland records that were met by unexcited praise, but the smartest thing he ever did was introduce the world to the super-lyrical MC Big Pun. Pun took the rap world by storm, only to die from a heart attack a couple of years later. From this untimely death was born fame for Joe, who began every song with some sort of short rant about the man he dubbed his "twin". Though Joe never possessed the skill of Pun, as long as he could convince folks that Pun's ghost was somewhere in the room, he had our attention for the moment.

I won't even go in on Puffy & Notorious BIG*.

Now, to the list of parasites, we can add an unknown rap cat named Charles Hamilton. First glance at his name would indicate that he's a figure skater, or some type of child backgammon protege. No Dice. He's best compared to that strange guy who always talks in mumbles & never matches his clothes, purposely. Regardless of failing thus far to become a hip-hop-household name, he continues to attempt to brainwash the masses into thinking he's offering above average rap records, when they are merely clear cries for help. He even got punched in the face by some girl he put in a song. One would think she would be grateful for her 5 minutes of fame. Instead, she kicked his ass for being so homotional. Even that attack on his manhood wasn't enough to deter him from douchebaggery.

His next album was to be Executive Produced by a producer by the name of J-Dilla*, who passed away about 2 years ago from Lupus. Even though he was an underground artist, Dilla had produced hit records for a large amount of notable artists. For the most part, he just starting getting the respect his craft deserved when his life ended.

Nonetheless, he's dead now, & in some odd attempt at homage, Charles decided to make Dilla executive producer on his next album. Problem is, they've never worked together, met, or shared any type of mutual friendship (stalker!). As strange as that may be, Hamilton said that he did so in an effort to see to it that Dilla's family benefits from a percentage of every album sold. Which, really wouldn't be strange at all if he didn't plan on releasing the album on the 'Net for free download. What first appeared a genuine effort on his part to contribute to a dead man's family quickly evolved into a marketing scheme implosion, further cementing Hamilton's legacy of being a f%cking jerk.

When idiocy outweighs musical output, something's not working in your favor. This is the stuff that true douches are made of.

Call me old-fashioned, but in my day, if one wanted to help out another, we simply took them whatever we thought they needed. May even have called & asked first if it was cool for us to even extend our hand to them. A good sign if someone is an asshole is assuming that whatever they decide to do for us will be good enough. If Hamilton didn't have the money currently available to manifest his good intentions, he could've organized a fundraiser for Dilla's loved ones. Folks love giving for a cause. It's the homeless people that they refuse to help. If properly orchestrated, he could have raised tens of thousands of bucks to give them. Hell, at this point, a tattoo of J-Dilla on his back would have been better received by the public.

According to Charles' blog, the politics of the music game made it virtually impossible to put Dilla's stamp on his brand. No Dice. It was probably more like Dilla's mom caught wind of this bum ass clown & shooed him away like bees at a barbecue. So, to save face, he blamed it on a bunch of people who don't really exist.

We know death is the Holy Grail of marketing. & if you can't get a co-sign from a dead dude, its time to change careers.

If it's worth anything, Robert Louis Stevenson is my executive publisher. Shouts out to his mom.
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*-Google Alert