In earlier posts I talked about the record labels controlling what is being put out and making meaningless music, but the internet has slowly changed this process. The internet has allowed the voice of the people to be heard and change the music being played now. An example of this is J. Cole who has been defying the trend and putting out music that really touches upon real life struggles. J. Cole spent 2 years obtaining a loyal fan base through free music in the form of mixtapes over the internet. After 2 years when he had a following strong enough he dropped his album and it paid off. The album delays also happened because the labels believe J.Cole did not have the single to sell well, but eventually they let him drop the album and it proved all of the critics wrong. This has opened new doors in rap for artist like Kendrick Lamar who are even more political to have their chance to put out their music.
“Tell me why mamma do you cry
Is it cause you know my teacher be feeding me lies
Is it cause you know that Preacher is greedy inside
Cause racism is alive I see the disguise
Mamma I know it hurts
It hurts me to watch you go to work barely hanging on
Some rich man getting richer while you slaving for him”-J.Cole
Kendrick Lamar is another rapper who speaks about politics and struggles in his music and does not water down his music. He took a little bit of a different approach than J.Cole by not signing with any record labels and selling his album on itunes with no official in store copy. Kendrick Lamar refused to sign with labels until he had the power in his hands. He recently signed with Interscope records and has said he does not believe it will affect his creativity because they wanted him more than he wanted them, which allowed him to have the control. Now he is capable of making an album with the record labels behind him without affecting his message.
“Every day we fight the system, just to make our way
We been down for too long but that’s alright
We was built to be strong cause it’s our life, na-na-na
Every day we fight the system, we fight the system
We fight the system (Never like the system)
We been down for too long but that’s alright, na-na-na” Hiiipower- Kendrick Lamar
While these artists have made huge changes to the music industry it was only made possible by the fans and the people. We needed to step up and make a change against these corporations and show them that we will not support the music they were putting out and we deserved better quality than this. I also think fans of the music industry realized they do have the power to make changes and really affect these power hungry corporations and at the end of the day it is up to us to say enough, this is what we want. This does not just apply to music, but to everything in the country and we can make a change when we work together and stand up for what we believe in.