It has been an ongoing conversation throughout hip hop about do the streets influence the art, or does the art influence the streets. Many believe that rappers glorify street culture which in turn makes a whole generation of rap listeners glorify that culture as well. On the other hand, many artists believe that lyrics do not glorify street culture, but that they are just a messenger, telling the listener about what goes on where they come from.
Charlamagne Tha God spoke on this topic during a recent episode of The Breakfast Club where he called out the hypocrisy of rapers who will say “rest in peace” but whos lyrics glorify murder.
“There is absolute power in the tongue which is why it does confuse me when I hear artists, you know send out rest in peace’s to people but then continue to glorify and celebrate the same lifestyle that ultimately led to these people that they’re saying R.I.P’s to demise … so it’s just interesting,” Charlamagne said.
This has been a frequent topic in hip hop especially as of recent, given the increase in murders among rappers and the recent R.I.C.O. charges brought against Young Thug, Gunna, and other YSL affiliates, where prosecutors are using rap lyrics as evidence against the group.
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