It is said that there is indeed time for everything and seasons come and go all the time, as humans are born to die, which is why, in Odega Shawa’s words, Terry Tha Rapman’s time has elapsed.
Every time a hip hop musician gets frustrated with trending evolution of the platform he declares that ‘hip hop is dead’. In their careers both US rappers Nas and Eminem declared hip hop dead. Hip hop did not die of course. It was just flirting with new forms and new ears, like any solid hip beauty would do at giddy moments.
The argument is long and worn. Do you sell or tell the game?
There are artistes who decide to sell the game, bounce to whatever is hot on the market and line up S£x dosed lyrics to sound likable to DJs. Some decide to tell it, to stick to their nuts and lay out work that would stand out on the sands of hip hop time, f…k the money and S£x songs. As Tupac Shakur so well phrased it in ‘Hail Mary’: ‘Picture paragraphs unloaded/Wise ones being quoted…’
Others wisely try to combine selling and telling. The bottom line is bills and stacks to pay them.
For long years Terry Tha Rapman belonged to the second group, the ones unloading wise words to the streets, hoping it could transform both street minds and his own pockets. It obviously didn’t work out that way. Wizkid and Davido, both of whom would say anything and bump to anything to sell, was making people like Terry Tha Rapman sound so old and boring. Like seriously. Who wants to get dragged through three complete sixteen bars of solid reality on every song, with some inevitable string or piano straggling on top to differentiate one song from another?
Certainly not this fast track memory generation with their whole self-esteem tied up to the brand of mobile device they are using – and the year it came out. They could all barely keep their eyes open during school lectures and just when they managed to escape the classroom to social media here comes Terry Tha Rapman and his likes with their ‘real hip hop’ nonsense. When there’s Tekno and Mr Eazi. Awwww, how could Tekno release only Rara? He’s so cute! Let him be dropping three singles at a go purrleeeeaaazzzz!
So Terry Tha Rapman thought about it and decided that enough was now enough. What the heck is this? In fact enough was now even more than enough, if the truth is told. People that depend on him for their welfare are not going to get any goodie from ‘real hip hop’. Meanwhile every new pangolo crooner is throwing cash around on instagram.
The real hip-hop oracle kicked out the shrine and dropped ‘Gamusu’, his new single – a direct and unashamed grasp for Tekno and Wizkid’s sell space.
The true disciples of real hip hop could not believe their eyes and their ears. If you piss on real hip hop heads of course they throw you out with the trash. The outcry was shrill. On his facebook page Terry Tha Rapman would have none of it. As far as he was concerned anybody complaining is a fake fan and hypocrite who wanted him to end up broke or worse on the streets. His facebook defence was as shrill as the castigation that followed ‘Gamusu’:
‘Being in this game for so long, I can attest there’s something ideologically hypocritical from so-called fans and media who show you no support when you release consistent materials from your acclaimed genre only for them to gnash their teeth at you when you go the other way,’ he says. ‘Hiphop (rap especially) is dead and long gone thanks to fake fans & media who do not support the movement.’
Fake fans like us? *Looks around in confusion*
Terry Tha Rapman said he should have done this a long time ago sef, before any wide eyed teenage girl in Africa ever heard of Tekno or Wizkid. ‘For the records, apart from being an artist, I’m human and if I cannot diversify (which I should have done years ago), then I’m in the wrong planet. I don’t know where people get this debate of ‘Hardcore rappers don’t sing’ or ‘Rappers don’t go commercial’. Says who?’
Ok, here’s the thing Lord TR, as you said you now prefer to be called. Nobody wants you lost and broke on the streets. They just want to hear hip hop the way it was created, the way they got used to you serving it. It is not intelligent to fight with your old fan base too, especially when the expected new one has not accepted you in toto. We understand you have bills to pay, again especially under Buharinomics. All you had to do was inform us beforehand and ask us to go with you. Tell us it is not sustainable for you to keep sacrificing commerciality for art form. Even tell us to tune off for a short while. You could deceive us by saying you would be back to real hip hop and that this gimmick is just a specialized cash chase. Paper. Mullah. Owonikoko. We know what that is. Like Daniel Sparks puts it in your comment section on Youtube: ‘Well, guess I guess mans gotta eat.’
Why do you have to address our outrage as if it does not matter? Suddenly, we are your enemies? Really? We are the ones that made you what you are Terry, take it or leave it. We put you on that spot when we stood by you through all the years when the stupid DJs and radio OAPs did not. Sorry we didn’t make you a billionaire. That’s not how it works anyway. Forgive us. Rakim still retains the top spot god on MC lists in the US for his game not his cash. We thought that was where we were going with you. Our bad. We thought wrong.
How dare you declare hip hop is dead when gut-it-like-it-is MCs like Mode 9 and Snatcha are still out there?
You are dead Terry. Your essence is gone. That’s what it is. You are dead to real hip hop. Let’s hope the chewing gum pangolo generation starts tattooing your names on their asses and their Boo.bs now Terry. We pray you cut some of those ‘ambassador’ deals sharp enough. We accept we lost and they won. But stick with them. Stick with them Terry because if we ever catch you near a sixteen bar again we are going to Jet Li your ass and hang it out for Mode 9 to rap about!
PS: this message is endorsed by the core Terry Tha Rapman global fans association.
Written by Odega Shawa/LIS
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