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|Posted on Thursday, August 21, 2003 - 01:10 am: |
I don't think those artists in the least bit suffer any loss of "street cred" because of their relative mainstream acceptance. And they (and their enormous bank accounts) probably really wouldn't care even if they did. The only REAL "street cred" is gettin' paid. Sure some people will hate on them and try to put a negative spin on their success/wealth. But the bottomline is most of those in the hood, even those who don't like them, know that they would consider bungie jumping off Mount Everest for a chance to be in T's, Cube's, Def's and Smith's place.
I disagree that Tupac's success was due to his being "sell-out" or "telling his fan's what they wanted to hear". There were and are plenty of wannabe hip/hop 'stah'rers' who would do and are doing those things in spades who still regularly dine at soup kitchens. And actually Shakur's most popular songs ("Keep Yah Head Up", "Dear Momma" & "Aint Mad At Cha'") extolled appreciation of and fidelity to Black women and championed Black enlightenment, responsibility & liberation.
'Pac was/is popular because, in spite of his troubles/failings, he was an estremely compelling, charismatic, talented and productive person whose gifts transcended artistic genres (performing, writing/producing/arranging, poet/essayist and actor) and whose art often very fairly and poignantly mirrored the plight of young Black men/women.
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