Mumble Rap and Similar Sound
If you’ve been born anywhere within the last thirty years, there’s a very good chance you’ve been active on a social media website. Whether you were asking your friends to put you on their top 8 on Myspace or updating relationship status’ on Facebook, almost everyone in the 21st century joined in on the fun. Even I enjoy tweeting rap lyrics and denying all J. Cole slander on my twitter timeline. The joy of raging twitter feminists and Kanye stans gassing 808s and Heartbreak just keeps us coming back. While it’s all fun and games on our end, the effect of social media makes the world a lot smaller.
Twenty years ago, nobody could imagine sending a message to someone that lives in New York from Florida in 20 keystrokes. Ten years ago we probably wouldn’t even accept a friend request from someone we don’t know. We basically were restricted to our own zones, listening to our own music. Down in South Florida, we had our own jooking music, and Ice Berg. Trick Daddy, Trina, Slip n slide were on the radio, along with other southern snap artists. In New York, Dipset was poppin with their pink fur coats and over in the West Coast people were funkin to Mac Dre in their hydraulic low riders. Every region has a unique sound to it. This was before social media of course.
Now it’s different. Anywhere in the world is reachable. Snapchat, twitter, periscope make anyone or anything able to be seen. Suddenly your favorite rapper lives in Philadelphia. His favorite rapper lived in California. Everyone begins to listen to each other’s music. The regional barriers die down, everyone’s inspiration begins to derive from the same artists. Everyone begins to talk about the same things. Adding onto how insecure of a genre rap already is; to fit in, their subject matter must also be similar. The unique sounds of the Dirty South, East Coast, West Coast and Midwest began to mesh into the melting pot of the internet. Everyone used to have their own sound. Lil Wayne, Boosie, T.I., Andre 3k were all southern artists and each have a distinct flow and artistry while keeping the southern sound. Jay, Nas, DMX and Jadakiss were very unique and all from NY, while still retaining that NY swag.
Now at the height of SoundCloud rappers, Foreigns, Go yard bags and Wraiths. This makes for a very interesting situation for rappers, producers and consumers alike. Basically everyone can be a rapper. Now instead of dropping albums, it’s more profitable to drop tons of songs for popularity. Instead of taking time to write 100 songs and pick the best 12 after perfecting your sound, people just drop all 100. Since they’re probably not good at rapping, why not just pick the most popular flow possible? People hear Lil Uzi Vert everywhere, Why not sound like Uzi so people will like it? Uzi is catchy, so why not listen to more Uzi? People Like beats that Uzi raps on so why not make a bunch of “Lil Uzi Vert Type Beats” up? Over time it dumbs down the market, making the overall skill level to succeed lower and lower, hence the music we have now.
Not taking anything from Uzi, I’m bumpin The Perfuct Luv Tape as much as anyone else and the fact they’re making money in a semi-positive manner is a great thing. But in time, due to the nature of the game, the rappers who don’t stand out right now will either get better or be lost in the same song sauce of over saturated rappers. For now, the lack of originality in the game is worth mention. Everyone should just be themselves, not everyone needs a wraith.
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