I'm blaming you for this blog, Kid Rock. You and that damned "Cowboy" song. It's all your fault.
Let's talk about "hick-hop," shall we? So I was under the foolish impression that hick-hop was shit like Limp Bizkit and Bubba Sparxxx. You know, that mashed-up, metal-ish/hip-hop-ish/country garbage that constitutes, at most, a Nelly dance move or two.
I'd even lump Blake Shelton in with my previous idea of hick-hop, with whatever the hell it is he's doing now with that "Boys Round Here" garbage. Annoying but tolerable, for the most part.
So when I sat down to write on this whole hick-hop craze, I thought I had a pretty decent grasp on what I'd be getting.
I did not. I had no grasp on hick-hop. At all.
In reality, most of the music that is considered hick-hop is way more offensive to the eardrums (and soul) than anything poor Kid Rock could have done. The Jawga Boyz' "Ridin' High" (below) is an example of a common "hick-hop" music video. Oh, and that Jawga Boyz? It's pronounced "Georgia Boys," for those of you who read it as Jaguar Boys, as I did. Yup, Georgia Boys. The awkward spelling makes it gangster, apparently.
So what this hick-hop is, essentially, is not straight-up country, and it's certainly not hip-hop. It's a new(ish) genre of music that smacks together the terrible parts of country music and cheesy, drum-machine-generated beats, which is where the hip-hop component comes in. It creates this rural-themed, Autotuned twangy "rap," complete with a plethora of Walmart references and images of the stars and bars flown at will.
In other words, it's hip-hop that has been culturally appropriated by self-described rednecks, who have, in turn, hammered it to shit with references about dip, the South, their dislike of big cities (from which that whole hip-hop genre originated, dudes) and their love of the Confederate flag. Can I get a collective "ugh," please?
However, rather than kill you with a million words on why this stuff is the epitome of fuckery, I'm going to show you. I've watched a few Jawga Boyz videos so you don't have to, and here's what I've learned thus far about the hick-hop craze and why it's so anti-hip-hop, even with those drum machines creepin' in the background.
"Cash Money Redneck" No. No matter what you've been told, there is no such thing as a "cash money redneck." Either someone misheard Ja Rule and Weezy back in 2001 when they were with the Cash Money Click, or we've just completely jacked the name and tattooed it across our arms because, well, we like it because it's so rap. Oh, and that would be the same arms that we use to fly that whole "Southern pride" symbol that so many find racist. It doesn't work.
"Got a confederate flag hangin' out my backside, but only on the left side" Yeah. That also does not work, nor is it, dare I say, culturally acceptable to be "rapping," whatever the subject matter, while waving a Confederate flag around like a helicopter. See, folks, that whole "South will rise again" thing is racist. Yeah, I said it. It's racist, and what weirder place to espouse racist sentimentality than in a hip-hop song. Somethin' in the mud jug ain't right.
Makin' it rain, Mud Jug style The object in the above image is a little thing called a Mud Jug, and hick-hop artists throw them to their waiting audiences in much the same manner that T-Pain would make it rain in the club. A for effort on this one, but those Mud Jugs are dip spittoons, and they're going to take an eye out.
I would also like to point out that one cannot roll a Philly blunt in a massive wad of dip, which makes it all the more backwards. Everyone knows tobacco products are only used for rolling Philly blunts if you're a rapper. They are definitely not for spitting into a Mud Jug.
Redneck hick-hop cliques A dude with a shirt that says something way not racist like "Super Cracker," a guy with a punk-rock mohawk (a well-cultivated mohawk, might I add) and a bunch of shirtless dudes in camo shorts holding beers. Guys, the rap songs say "shorty," not "shorts."
All Super Cracker needs is a Confederate flag cape to complete the look, I guess. Also, what's up with the dude and the sideways hat? Would someone please show him some hip-hop videos that aren't on VHS? You know, something from this century? Because this clique is not the one.
This is not "tricking out your ride." Again. And again, again, again. If you're going to adopt (and I'm putting that nicely) another genre of music that stems, at least originally, from the inner city -- a rainbow of colors, ethnic groups and cultures -- perhaps you should not trick out your ride with the damn Confederate flag, because historically it is what symbolized the oppression of folks with a darker skin tone than yours.
Maybe get some rims or hydraulics to replace that offensive rebel-flag license plate; those seem like they'd be nifty for when you're muddin'. Or maybe just abandon the whole wannabe hip-hop thing altogether if you're dead set on sporting the rebel flag. Music as a whole would probably be safer that way.
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