By Cory Serfoss
Wow, what just happened? Even though the Grammys were almost a month ago, a certain bad taste still lingers. Put yourself in the avid Kendrick Lamar fan’s shoes, where he’s had one of the best rap albums put out in the last decade. He’s had the best guest verse put on another rappers song reminiscent of Eminem’s forever classic takeover of Jay Z’s “Renegade,” his opening role in one of one of the top three most profitable concerts of 2013, Yeezus, and his skyrocketing reputation of being not only a great rapper but an artist.
How else can I put it, somewhere in Kendrick Lamar’s six Grammy nominations, including that of the most acclaimed, Album of the Year, Best New Artist and Best Rap Album, what could stop him from becoming one of the youngest Grammy stars of all time?
The National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences, also known as the Grammy committee, concocted the perfect potion to change every Kendrick Lamar fan to Dr. Jekyll’s with every category loss. And to pour salt on the wound, the winner of each of these awards was Macklemore.
The once hailed idea of may the best artist win has now faded along with not only viewers, but artists discontent with the hailed most prestigious musical award show on Earth. With this comes again my discontent with that of rap artists never being appreciated in the musical spectrum. The consensus of the Grammy awards and rap has turned into them not knowing anything about rap unless it comes from a commercially fueled perspective.
What angers many is the fact that rap is either not appreciated like all of the other genres or it is washed and branded into something that it is not. In turn, what has stemmed from this rivalry between Kendrick Lamar and Macklemore can be juxtaposed to that of commercial rap and what rap purists would refer to as “real rap.”
The majority of Mackelmore’s success comes down to the fact that his hits are full of catchy pop songs that deal with material things such as being the coolest person at a party, being very frugal when shopping or just raising your hands in the as if imaginary ceilings can’t hold you down. This doesn’t only stem from this year though as last year’s best rap album of the year award won by Drake’s “Take Care” didn’t even make TV.
Instead, he received it on the red carpet off screen before the show as if it was a waste to even show it on television. Maybe my expectations are way too high, and Macklemore could be the best thing rap has produced since the late Notorious BIG.
Problem is if I’m choosing between, Kanye West’s “Yeezus,” Drake’s “Nothing Was the Same,” Jay Z’s “Magna Carta,” Macklemore’s “The Heist” and Kendrick Lamar’s “Good Kid M. A. A. D. City,” Macklemore would come dead last.
In an era where everyone yearns for that of change and instant gratification, lets keep rap music in it’s purest form where it is about the substance, and less about the commercial appeals of techno beats and annoyingly repetitive choruses.