Common Talks Hip-Hop And Social Change: ‘It’s an evolving organism’

In a recent interview with the New York Times for their TimesTalks segment, Chi-Town emcee Common dropped insight surrounding topics such as his hip-hop career, influence on young black leadership, and hip-hop’s ability to encourage social change.

Common is recognized as a Grammy award-winning musician who is a polished artist with soulful poetry who is groomed in sound activism for communal needs. Moderated by New York Times National Editor, Marc Lacey, the two embark on into a dialogue that revolves around social equality and race relations.

Lacey recalled Common’s Oscar speech when “Glory” won the award best song and pointed out his commentary regarding social equality and queried the rapper’s deed about being a socially conscious rapper.

“My struggle is the same struggle as that kid from the south side of Chicago which is where I’m from,” says Common. “When I first started rapping, its like you know you rapping about yourself, how dope you are…but then after a while, you’re like wow, after you start telling personal stories people start saying man, ‘your stories affected me.’ Your music has a bigger effect that just you.”

In light of the current Hollywood phenomenon where power players are being exposed for their acts of sexual misconduct, Lacey asked Common about hip-hop’s role in the cultural catastrophe:

“Hip-hop I don’t want to act like hip-hop is the cause of the culture. The culture of women being put in a second class is a part of American culture,” the rapper clarifies. “We’ve been a reflection of that meaning you hear hip-hop artists who are human beings that came from neighborhoods where that culture is accepted…”

On rapping about Trump:

“I’m not gonna go and put my energy towards that. It’s more about uplifting.”

When asked about his perception of the current state of hip-hop, the Finding Forever emcee finds new artists expressing their own versions of truth and also senses a strong desire for simply stardom by most. The focal point for stardom plays a role in the faint creativity found in the sounds of modern day hip-hop artists, Common explains:

“I think the younger artists are speaking their truth and speaking from the creative place that they are, where they are in their lives. I don’t feel that the creativity is as innovative as when hip-hop initially started…,” said Common. He goes on to state how the hip-hop genre changed once corporations poked into it pushing a mentality where aspiring artists do not “have the desire to be an artist, they might just want to be a superstar or they may just say ‘man, I just want to take care of my family.’ That doesn’t necessarily raise the level of the art.”

He doesn’t knock new artists for thinking this way, he just doesn’t find the music to be unique. He gave kudos to artists such as Kendrick Lamar, Chance the Rapper, Noname, and even SZA-who Common says is “hip-hop in her own way,” for being modern-day acts that are conventional with their works.

“Its a lot of artists out there that are still innovative, but the music overall doesn’t have the creativity and purity that hip-hop had in the 90’s and 2000’s…”

This past week, the official portrait of Michelle Obama for the Smithsonian’s National Portrait Gallery by Baltimore artist Amy Sherald was revealed and ended up triggering an uproar of admiration from the masses. POTUS 44, Barack Obama‘s portrait was also revealed, crafted by notable portrait painter Kehinde Wiley. “It’s just the royalty that Michelle Obama, First Lady Michelle Obama and our President Barack Obama, the royalty that they are came out in those portraits,” Common describes the paintings. “When you see them it just reminds you of the light that we have as human beings.”

Common’s perspective on matters surrounding hip-hop and social issues is one that should be taken into consideration by hip-hop fans reigning from all backgrounds, simply due to his veteran status in the culture which is guarded by potent experience and solidity. For the past ten years, the Chicago based legend has been committed to helping inner city youth reach their highest potential through the mold of his foundation, Common Ground.

Watch Common’s Q&A with Marc Lacey for TimesTalks, below.





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Black Panther Just Scored One Of The Top Openings OF ALL TIME — Box Office Totals HERE!


We knew it would, we knew it would, we KNEW it would, and it did!!

Black Panther is now officially one of the most popular movies EVER with one of the best opening weekends of ALL TIME!!!

Related: ALL 18 Marvel Movies, RANKED!

The ground-breaking superhero movie did a cool $192 million across North America over the past three days!!

When you also include the four-day holiday time frame by adding Monday projections, it looks like the film is going to surpass a total of more than $218 million for its opening weekend JUST in the United States and Canada!!!

That makes it one of the best domestic openings EVER!

And globally, too, you can add in another $169 million around the world — which gives Black Panther a total of an unreal $387 million global debut!


The weekend isn’t over, of course, and there’s some thought the film could climb as high as $225 million domestically by the end of Monday, so perhaps those totals are even a bit conservative!!

But there’s absolutely no doubt that it is one of the best openings and most popular new release in the history of the industry!!! Can’t beat THAT!!

Related: The Women Rule Black Panther In Our Review Roundup!

And don’t take it just from the box office totals alone!!

Listen to what people — celebs and regular movie-goers alike — were saying about the movie, too (below)!!!

Sunday Drive: Subaru Ascends up to the hottest market segment in America

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From crossovers to sportscars … and the contents of a long-forgotten storage unit.

Continue reading Sunday Drive: Subaru Ascends up to the hottest market segment in America

Sunday Drive: Subaru Ascends up to the hottest market segment in America originally appeared on Autoblog on Sun, 18 Feb 2018 18:20:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Rapid fire rifle device on special offer in salute to Donald Trump

‘Bump stock’ used by Las Vegas shooter in promotional tie in with presidential campaign slogan

There’s a Presidents’ Day sale on bump stocks, the device the Las Vegas shooter put on his rifles. Slide Fire Solutions, a bump stocks manufacturer, is offering 10% off with coupon code: MAGA.

That’s a salute to the campaign slogan of President Donald Trump, who promised to “Make America Great Again”, and who has responded to the deadly massacres in the past five months by continuing to oppose any new gun control laws.

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Travis Scott Speaks Publicly For The First Time About Newborn Daughter Stormi…

So adorable!!!

Travis Scott is clearly a proud papa to newborn baby daughter Stormi Webster, and Kylie Jenner‘s man finally had something public to say about it this weekend, too!

Related: Don’t Expect Photos Of Stormi Anytime Soon…

TMZ caught Travis Scott leaving a club on Saturday night, and while he wasn’t full of tons of words for the media, he did have one very special and very simple thing to say about his newborn daughter (below):

“She’s beautiful.”

Awww!!! So wonderful!!

He’s obviously one proud new dad — and you can tell by watching him in the full video HERE!

[Image via Lia Toby/WENN.]

Upgrade your home office with this $49 AmazonBasics Mid-Back Mesh Chair

The AmazonBasics Mid-Back Mesh Chair is on sale for $49.16. It normally sells for around $10 more and has received 4.2 out of 5 stars from over 2,700 customer reviews.

This comfortable office chair has a contoured mesh back for breathability. It also features a padded seat, pneumatic seat-height adjustment, and dual-wheel casters. Your purchase is backed by a one-year warranty.

Keep the office upgrade party going with this AmazonBasics Mesh Wastebasket for $9.

See at Amazon