We don’t f**k with Keef either, but damn white man…
For those that aren’t aware, let’s take a minute to define a “minstrel show”.
Encyclopedia Britannica defines it as:
Minstrel show, also called minstrelsy, an indigenous American theatrical form, popular from the early 19th to the early 20th century, that was founded on the comic enactment of racial stereotypes. The tradition reached its zenith between 1850 and 1870. Although the form gradually disappeared from the professional theatres and became purely a vehicle for amateurs, its influence endured—in vaudeville, radio, and television as well as in the motion-picture and world-music industries of the 20th and 21st centuries.
The earliest minstrel shows were staged by white male minstrels (traveling musicians) who, with their faces painted black, caricatured the singing and dancing of slaves.
Now, take a look at this opinion blog written by Edward McClelland Of NBC.
Via NBC Chicago
Until last Friday, I was going to buy Chief Keef’s new album, Finally Rich. I’m a big fan of Chicago hip-hop. For those of you who think Keef is a guitarist for the Rolling Stones, Chief Keef is the biggest new star in the genre, a 17-year-old from Englewood named Keith Cozart who became famous after his homemade video of the song “I Don’t Like” blew up as a huge hit among Chicago Public Schools students…
…Chief Keef was arrested last year for pointing a gun at a police officer. This year, he filmed a video with the music site Pitchfork in which he fired off a few rounds at the gun range. Police also want to know whether Keef was involved in the in the gang beef that led to the murder of Joseph Coleman, a 16-year-old aspiring rapper who went by the name Lil JoJo. After Coleman was killed, Keef mocked him on Twitter, then claimed his account had been hacked. None of this was enough to cost him his $3 million recording contract with Interscope records.
It should’ve been enough to put me off his music, which, from what I’ve heard of it, is pretty lunkheaded: simplistic rhymes, primitive beats. But it’s also a window into the world that has made Chicago the murder capital of America, and that piqued my curiosity.
Since last week’s murders at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Connecticut, though, I haven’t had the stomach for any violent entertainment. While I was watching this Sunday’s Bears game, ads for the movies Gangster Squad and Django Unchained came on TV. Both ads packed two or three shootings into 30 seconds. I don’t want to see either. A culture that glorifies the sexiness of the man with the gun is one reason we have 300,000,000 guns in America. I also don’t want to pay $14 for the minstrel show of listening to a real live South Side thug. I don’t want to support a scene that makes gangbanging a resume builder for music success.
Although we all know that Chief Keef is the far beyond the limit of ignorance that we’ve grown accustomed to in hip-hop, are you offended by a white writer referring to Keef as a “minstrel show”???
Image via flickr