Google+ Q Dot: 7 reasons hip hop has no billionaires reply

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

7 reasons hip hop has no billionaires reply

I'm writing this in Johnny rockets eating a burger and as a reply to another magaZines twitter post about why hip hop had no billionaires .... I said I had 7 more reason and here they are.

1. Lack of equity/ownership over the culture. 

Even the most powerful labels in hip hop have been partially or wholly owned by bigger companies. This is the only genre where even it's most iconic label (def jam) is owned by another entity. For example, in Jazz you have Blue Note records which I believe is still a label that is independently owned with major distribution partners. 

2. Those in leadership positions lack the formal business training and higher education needed to compete.

For most in hip hop, this is a hustle and not a business but in actuality it's a business. There's a reason why a degree like an MBA is important. Those people in other industries are trained to lead businesses on a level the average street corner hustle can't comprehend. So we as a culture are behind because we can't seem to hire competent work forces in our businesses to watch them grow properly. 

3. Socioeconomic obstacles.

Hip hop is still a minority ran industry and the facts are minorities like blacks and Latinos are not competing in America when it comes to education or finances. How does that correlate to billionaires? Most billionaires are educated. Most billionaires built their fortunes in business. But out of the 30 wealthiest african Americans only 3 earned their wealth through business, the rest earned it through sports and entertainment. It's vice versa with our white counterparts. The kicker is - you have a better chance of winning the lottery, having triplets or being struck by lightning then you do going pro in sports, becoming an A list actor or platinum selling musician. Furthermore, on average, regardless of race, one can only move up one socioeconomic class in his or her lifetime. So if you're middle class the chances are you can only move up to upper middle class. There are exceptions but they are RARE. 


4. Hip hop industry isn't made up of a workforce of those who grew within the culture and understand it best.

Ever been to Nashville? Ever seen a country concert? Chances are the venue is owned by someone who came up in the country industry. The lighting and sound crew? Probably been in the country industry. I'm in SF right now on tour and Jay Z and Bey just played, I bumped into the lighting tech for the tour who just so happens to be a country music guy. Why? Because hip hop doesn't understand that there are more important roles to be played. They all want the spotlight. When likeminded individuals can work on something they love they make it great but I'm sure the country guy workin an urban tour is just doing it to pay the bills.


5. No concerted effort to preserve the integrity and history of hip hop culture.

It's odd but have you ever tried doing hip hop karaoke that wasn't rappers delight? Right. You can't. Why? Hip hop is always looking to the new and forgetting the old. That's why you rarely see rappers doing covers of older songs. It's looked down on. 

6. It's been sub categorized to death - more so than any other genre.

Rock has sub genres and jazz had it's periods but nothing is more sub categorized than hip hop. East coast, west coast, trap, down south whatever... It's confusing. You ever heard of west coast country? No. What about dirty south folk. Nope. There's something to keeping things simple. The successful genres do that.

7. It's not family friendly.

Ever take your kids to a local rap show? Doubt it. Go to a country concert, a rock show or a jazz show and you'll see kids with parents, parents with friends. I've seen 4 generations of families attend country concerts. But hip hop just segments itself to death! 

Just sayin.