Rappers are like reporters, reporting on what’s going on around them. Whether their reporting about Rollie’s with a dab of ranch or being Wesley Sniped. We can always learn a thing or two from the culture. In no particular order here are a few life lessons I’ve learnt from Hip-Hop..
Song: Tupac – keep Ya Head Up
Lyric: “please don’t cry, dry your eyes never let up.Forgive but don’t forget,girl,keep your head up.”
Song: Notorious B.I.G – Mo money, Mo problems
This song samples Diana Ross’s ‘I’m coming out’ and includes a skit of Biggy speaking on the jealousy & envy that comes hand in hand with wealth. A gentle reminder for us youngins that their somethings money can’t buy, like, loyalty and love.
Song: Nas – I Can
Lyric: “I know I can, Be what I want to be. If I work hard at it. I’ll be where I wanna be.“
According to Nas this is the vow to take if you’re gonna be the best but first, be careful of the company you keep and read more, learn more so you can change the globe. Nas also makes reference to Africa being the cradle of civilization.
“If the truth is told, the youth can grow. They learn to survive until they gain control.” – Nas
Song: Dead Prez – Discipline Lyric: “ practice makes perfect. Health is wealth. All things in moderation.Plan your work, work your plan.“
Discipline is a short-groovy track taken off the conscious rap duos début album Let’s get free, the lyrics are quite self-explanatory. Discipline makes things easier.
The media is highly saturated by sexually suggestive songs, videos and images yet no one wants to discuss sex openly- the single taken off the rap trio’s Black’s Magic album talks about the positive and negative sides of sex. An alternative version of the song was later released with a lyric change that addresses the spread of HIV/AIDS.
Song: Queen Latifah – U.N.I.T.Y
Lyric: “U.N.I.T.Y that’s a unity, love a black woman (you gotta let him know) infinity to infinity (You ain’t a b* or a H*) “
Women are subject to some form of harrasment on a daily – in this Grammy winning classic Latifah raps about loving black women from infinity to infinity and that’s obviously not done by beating women neither by calling women by derogatory terms.