Michael P. Jeffries is sick of the pop formula

June 29, 2010
By

authorphoto.jpg
Michael P. Jeffries, whose forthcoming Thug Life: Race, Gender, and the Meaning of Hip-Hop offers one of the most insightful examinations of contemporary hip-hop music by an academic in years, has an article on the website of The Atlantic that gives readers a chance to preview the kind of trenchant critique of the hip-hop hegemon he serves up in his new book. Jeffries’ article begins with a quote from rapper Drake on the pressures of the music industry:

What if I don’t really do the numbers they predict?
Considering the fact that I’m the one that they just picked
To write a chapter in history, the shit has got me sick.

—Drake, “9AM in Dallas”
I’m sick too. Sick of the paint-by-numbers pop-formula used to construct Drake’s debut album, despite the success of his more adventurous mixtapes. Sick of major record labels’ self-fulfilling prophecies about which artists and images are marketable. But more than any of this, I’m sick of the notion that hip-hop needs saviors like Drake.

Continue reading at The Atlantic or find out more about Jeffries’ book due out December 2010.

Bookmark and Share

Comments are closed.

Search for books and authors