Thursday, April 18, 2013

interesting post by Ian Hogarth on hip hop's changing relationship with its own past

he sees it as having become (lyrically) less allusive, with MCs much less likely to made an interpolative quote-nod to hallowed ancestors....

has hip hop been claimed perhaps by atemporality / "the endless digital now"?

certainly trap, ratchet, radio rap etc seem pretty line with the NOW!ism of EDM and Top 40 dancepop alike

Ian offers various speculations as to why...

one thought: the loss  of a sense of the past, while it seems like ought to free you from History's burdens and open the way for the future ... it doesn't really seem to work like that

in fact having a sense of history seems to be essential in order to move forwards -- without a sense of the past-ness of the past, it seems you can't project into the future (science fiction, true science fiction as opposed to space fantasy, is the historical method flipped around and projected forwards)

NOW!-ism / atemporality is really the uncoupling of the present from the dialectical chain that carries music/culture/civilisation from the past to the future

c.f. the hardcore continuum, where "roots n' future" consciousness is precisely what enabled the music to keep pushing forward... it's as if the past, tradition, etc served as steps in a stairway that you climbed onwards and upwards -- you pushed down on the past, and that pushed you forwards...

roots 'n' future = defining temporality of black music of all kinds (funk/soul/R&B, hip hop, reggae too obviously   -- where the past is recycled, pragmatically, put to service in the present -- old riddims, anthemic refrains, etc)

until now?

noticeable that in the last ten years we've not heard much from dancehall -- it hasn't thrown anything much our way, as it were...   has its R 'n' F dialectic disintegrated too? is it stuck on a gym treadmill, going around and around...


unconnected,  really, except that a parallel quest for something else while reading Ian's post, checking emails, led me to it ....

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