Hopsin’s “No Words” was Criminal
Allow me to begin with a shoutout to Hopsin, who did what no other rapper with the slightest bit of juice decided to do, and created a diss track to the hottest rapper(s) in the game right now for reasons unbeknownst to me. I mean there are several reasons, which I’ll go over in just a minute that explain how pointless, close-minded, and potentially harmful your tactics were upon the release of “No Words” – though I have many for you. And, like, just for the sake of an argument from common consent, that was probably the most fun you had ever shooting a video and instead of confirming that what these guys are doing does amount to some of the most fun ever had in the rap arena, probably only rivaled by the time that brought us “Shake Ya Tailfeather”, “Tipsy”, and any Ludacris track from said era, you had to come from the other side with some ol’ bullshit.
So here comes Hopsin, back from… who the fuck knows? with an attempt to shit on those, presumably Rich Homie Quan, Young Thug, Future, and you know, any other rapper making more noise than he. For what? To show how discontent he is with hip-hop right now? To show how “easy” it is to make a Future-esque song? To subvert a rapper due to their lack of lyrical prowess (as if that’s the only good rapper criteria)? Cause his song does none of that. In fact, it touches on just how great these guys are doing in their elements, which should be celebrated by not just fans on rap but all types of artists observing these guys doing what feels good to them, feels good to other people, and which is also lucrative -the icing on the codeine-clad cake. By demeaning this new style, Hopsin, is in fact doing them a favor. If these rappers had any doubt that their music wasn’t going in the right direction, this was at least a confirmation. Insert the whole imitation being the highest form of flattery argument here. And in that way, Hopsin comes out as the Meek Mill -likely one of the rappers he begrudges- of this situation, though he cannot boast the courtship of the hottest female rapper and one of the most beautiful women in the public eye. Anyways, he stepped out to make a statement about the state of rap, which will amount in nothing more than a circle-jerk amongst Hopsin and his fans and long-winded, mediocre journalism (like this!) that show just how dumb Hopsin looks. If you haven’t read the story, Meek ends up looking like a dumbass, gets bodied by Drake on tracks twice, and ethered on stages and on memes, with nothing to show for it for his fired shots.
Perhaps Hopsin is just exercising his first amendment rights, which I respect, I guess…
But in a way, with your fan base and the sentiments of hip-hop conversations, which tie directly in the culture as a whole, you have taken a stab at the Black community in a time when Black culture is on way to an apex. You’ve just committed a “Black on Black” crime, which is worse as it’s also an “artist on artist” crime, where these guys don’t owe you money, haven’t stepped on your Js or tried to swoop bae at a function. So what’s your reasoning, Sin? You have reached out to your audience, who are likely caught up in their own traditionalist rap shit, with all the terrible arguments that come with it, to take shots the at the success of these young Black men who are appealing to the world right now.
They bump Future at frat houses and when athletes step the plate at baseball games! These guys have arrived! Another step in the direction of asserting the African-American claim that they can and will succeed against historical odds that has Black culture and lifestyle attacked on the daily basis on the internet and via mediums inspired by the thoughts of Limbaughs and O’Reillys everywhere. And even more powerful a statement; instead of conforming to norms or making pop songs tailored for the masses, Future, Quan, Thugger and more have done it their way, the south’s way, the Black way! You decided to shit on that?! Maybe it’s that Hopsin can’t see color through the contacts he wears and he just sees people living their wildest dreams and decided to hate on that. The tastemakers of today’s sound have followed the trajectory put in place by the earliest Black superstars who’ve exhibited their genius in the past, rendering themselves a force to be reckoned with.
In a time where bigotry and prejudice has resurfaced as the hot-button issues of the day, this was one of the worst moves that could have been pulled by not only a fellow black man but by another artist, who lives life expressing themselves as Hopsin does. There is no way that Hopsin doesn’t come off as the “sensible negro” reprimanding his fellow Blacks for living so naturally, so organically, so… savagely, if I may. What we have are Black people caught in a fight to push their ideals and their culture to the top front page of American, thus world, culture, which they are in the process of right now and doing so successfully, versus another Black guy who holds these antiquated ideas of what art should be, which is the antithesis of art and expression, no?
Here we are at the end of 2015, and “Jumpman”, a double whammy of Black culture is one of the hottest songs on the streets. We got guys in dreadlocks, a Black hairstyle, all over media giving the world a look in. Essentially these guys, on the streak which they find themselves, are pushing soft culture into the households and psyches and people all over which undoubtedly lends power the community which they represent. A guy like Kendrick Lamar who has assumed in a different role of all this, while promoting Black culture, hasn’t bothered to shit on these guys for being different, cause in some ways they aren’t.
There’s mostly been recourse from the old heads like Snoop whose age render them more conservative and less open to new ideas of expression. Hopsin and all his fans sound like old men in this situation. Another shoutout goes to Hopsin for being the Clint Eastwood of rap following all of this.
And, you know, maybe the lifestyle portrayed ain’t so glorious. Maybe the fact that violence is one of their most discussed subjects is a problem. Perhaps this is the impetus for a conversation that needs to be had by all consumers of this product that surround some real issues. What does it say the Hopsin’s satirical video showed him raising the sound levels in a music studio with a pistol?
Without the need to answer of the questions posed in the piece, it’s necessary to say that what Hopsin did was tactless and provocative to the point of being detrimental to progress of “No Words” type rappers are making whether it be commercially or socially. Let’s hope that this repression of raw, soul-inspired music continues to dominate airwaves and streams. Hell, we need a new Migos track, a Chief Keef comeback and a Bobby Shmurda bailout in order to keep telling the stories of their origins with the sickest Metro Boomin, Zaytoven produced beats -which Hopsin came nowhere close in imitating- to keep these guys popping around the world.