Hip-Hop Speaks: Rhymefest & Dr. Boyce Watkins Talk About The Cons Of Lil Wayne And Rick Ross Losing Commercial Endorsements [Video]

Hip-Hop Speaks: Rhymefest & Dr. Boyce Watkins Talk About The Cons Of Lil Wayne And Rick Ross Losing Commercial Endorsements [Video]

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For the past few years Dr. Boyce Watkins has been putting the pressure on artists to start being more accountable for their lyrics and stop spreading genocide with their music.

Lil Wayne, Rick Ross and Tyler The Creator were recently caught in his scope as pressure was put on their corporate sponsors which led to Tyler’s Mountain Dew commercial being removed and Lil Wayne losing his sponsorship deal with Mountain Dew and PepsiCo and Ross being left in the cold by Reebok.

Despite the “victory”, was there any real momentum gained. Grammy award-winning Hip-Hop artist/activist Che “Rhymefest” Smith discussed the after effects of the boycotts with Dr. Watkins as the two came to a meeting of the minds that it doesn’t end with the removal of the artists.

The Chicago rhyme slayer and community activist said that he became concerned after watching rappers lose their deals and people reacting as if they had really done something. Rhymefest stated,

“I saw people celebrating and saying, ‘We did it, we did it,’ but then I thought about it, what did we really do? We criticized something that was reprehensible, lyrics that were indefensible. We made Black men lose some money, lose some endorsement deals but what didn’t we do?

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We didn’t put nothing in that place. It seems to me that when we talk about Hip-Hop over the years whether we’re talking about Rev.Jesse Jackson, Rev. Al Sharpton, Rev. Calvin Butts and I would even say now Dr. Boyce Watkins…

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We’re very good at criticizing and making people lose deals and money especially in the Black community but we’re not very good at replacing it. We’re not good at saying, ‘hey there’s an artist named Ryhmefest, or Jasiri X or Common or Talib Kweli. Mountain Dew, why don’t you take down the negative stuff and pop these up.

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And one of the reasons I think they’re not good at is because the people having this stuff taken down don’t know nothing about Hip-Hop. They know what they don’t like but they are not listening to the youth, or the music, or the new generation and the proper positive Hip-Hop.

So what happens, ok we’re going to take Lil Wayne and Tyler The Creator down and we’re going to replace him with another stereotype two years later. Because we as Black people never replaced ourselves, all we did was criticize… We have to stop being on each other without replacing it with something.

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It’s a thing of when you start the campaign, have a cohesive plan that we are going to replace this…Mountain Dew is not motivated… they don’t know who the artists are that they should be talking to. They go to the record labels and magazines but why not have them come to a Dr. Boyce Watkins and ask who should we have and then you have someone already ready to replace them with.

Then you say to the artist we want to get you this deal with Mountain Dew because we feel you have a better message that should go out but what we ask of you for the community is x.y.z…. so there has to be a more cohesive plan… and to make sure that corporate money stays in the Black community.”

As the two Hip-Hop intellectuals debated, Dr. Boyce also made it clear that he was no Calvin Butts. Butts made headlines in the 90s for bashing gangster rap and rolling over CDs and tapes with a steam roller and whose primary target was Snoop Dogg at the time. One of the huge differences between Dr. Boyce and Butts is that Watkins actually speaks with rappers and brings dialogue to the table.

Snoop even said back then that was his main issue with Butts was he had to buy my CD first and then he rolled over it instead of being a leader and coming and talking to me personally.”

Dr. Boyce Watkins

“I’ll make this very clear. I’m not a Calvin Butts or C. Delores Tucker. I am of Hip-Hop and can recite Lil Wayne lyrics by heart because I’m a big fan of Lil Wayne but I have a problem with that last 10% where he’s talking about killing little babies and encouraging Black men to go out and get high all of the time so when it comes to the heart of Hip-Hop, I consider myself someone to be right in the center of it and not as someone visiting it from a foreign country.”

The conversation got even more interesting as Rhymfest revealed he wasn’t a fan of Lil Wayne’s content and thought that 70-80% was based around nonsense.

This is what we need more of. It’s time to silence the coonery and start pushing our best representatives forward. Peep the dialogue below:

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