Posted May 1, 2018 by Mike Mineo in Features

A Pack of New Projects from Rap Veterans

Rap was born out of young men’s ideas. They evidenced the trials and tribulations of various classes of young men in America. The tone was impactful, strong, passionate and sometimes rebellious. Little do people understand that as young men grow up, while the trials and tribulations continue, they are often of a different shade than the more radical thought process that drives a yet naïve mind. Suddenly, the fire of the youth seems to have petered down to something of a dying ember. Increasingly, it was being felt that the veterans and founding fathers of rap had nothing to say, simply because they no longer reflected the angst of youth.

That notion is changing now, mostly due to the original rap fans themselves growing older too and wishing that their lives also found a voice in the same tones as in their teenage and young days. New projects are being increasingly launched by rap veterans. This information is listed out by Jackpot Mobile Casino which has a diverse collection of handpicked mobile slots, various casino games and much more from the leading game developing giants. Here is a lowdown on some of their efforts.

4:44 – Jay Z:

This was probably an eye-opener for all those people who thought rapping at an advanced age is passé. Jay-Z’s thirteenth solo album is as an adult as it can get, with all grown-up problems and outlooks, mostly revelatory, apologetic and simply an expression of vulnerability, something that very few young rappers would be good at. But this is Jay Z. He aces the album, which is also visible in the remarkable success this album has achieved since its release.

No News is Good News – Phonte

Another stalwart of rap – Phonte – release only his second solo album No News is Good News this year and it is truly a diary entry of a young, vibrant man growing up. There are stories on relationships and health – something that seems quite alien to a man known for his take on industry politics. His songs are now a reflection of the good and the bad of growing up. Strangely enough, the album is about winning in life, in the strangest ways, even at times, when it looks like you’ve lost. Pretty powerful stuff, from a legend himself.

August Greene

Again, this eponymously named album is focussed on serious issues, especially one that one would associate with being a black man in today’s world. There are versions and perspectives that many would relate to, which makes the album so impactful. Besides, there are also tracks on love and mistakes. All in all, this is a well-made rap album, benefitting from expert piano play from Glasper and Common’s words and Riggin’s beats.

This new tilt towards ‘dad-rap’, as it is slightly disparagingly called, is an example of the evolution of music. Rap is a powerful tool of expression, and it is heartening to see it ageing gracefully. Of course, there are some players who still try to retain their age-old youthfulness, but often, that is a wasted effort, as the concept of youth, like music, is ever changing.

Mike Mineo

I'm the founder/editor of Obscure Sound. I used to write for PopMatters and Stylus Magazine. Send your music to [email protected].