I Don’t Wanna Be Loved….I DON’T Wanna Be Loved??? Huh?

...oh the days when it was cool to love and value women.

I was listening to the radio the other day, which I rarely do, because no matter how much you like a song, you hate it when it is played every seven minutes and twenty-three seconds, and I heard this song that was jammin!  I turned the radio up, and started to groove, not so much listening to the lyrics, and then I heard the hook…I don’t wanna be loved, I don’t wanna be love, I just want a quickie….I found myself reminding myself to close my mouth.  I’m so disturbed because I can only imagine that this song is considered a contemporary “slow jam”….Someone’s lil girl is being seduced by some boy passionately suggesting that she be his quickie buddy, and that being able to separate feelings from sex is a sign of maturity. I would venture to say that in previous generations there were definitely girls who went for this, or felt empowered by being able to have meaningless sex, but it seems that this girl is quickly becoming the rule, not the exception?  Is that acceptable?  Perhaps this evolution isn’t an issue at all.  Where should young people learn about romance, and what they should expect from a mature romantic relationship?  Where did we learn this?

Is there anything on the airwaves for popular urban music that is giving this generation even the semblance of heterosexual romance or love?  Anything on these types of stations that might tell a young girl that when she grows up a young man will come along that she will fall in love with, who will show her that he loves her and wants to be with her and spend the rest of his life loving her?  Ok, well how about a song that will tell her that she has value beyond her sex appeal, sexual skills?  As I continued listening I found that the station was dominated with explicit sexual messages about the male prowess, ability to make a young lady wet the bed, make her legs shake, describing women as accessories, bros before hoes (super homo)mentality or “empowered” women spewing aggression and claims of finding pleasure in the use of whips and chains in sex.  There were very few exceptions.  Of course, the line up has to be no more than about 15 songs repeated throughout the day.  Recognizing that the listening demographic is likely 13-25 I have to ask what kind of character development this supports.  While I’m sure we can all agree that there is definitely a sector of parents that cannot be relied on to shape their child’s development along these lines, so is there a responsibility of artists to consider the messages they are sending?  Could part of the responsibility fall on the stations that air the music?  Or, am I just showing my age by even seeing an issue?  idk. let’s go!

oh yeah, guess who’s bizzack. I shouldn’t a left you, without a dope beat to step to!  

-Brookes

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Marketable Hood Traits

Swag On

 When I think of the POTUS and what he has undoubtedly accomplished in his relatively short lifetime, it’s apparent to me that at some point he probably had to lego of n-word “hood” shit.  Ok, I’m actually not sure the president was ever really “hood”, per se, but I’d like to argue that even if you weren’t raised in the inner city projects etc etc…dang near every Black American has been exposed to some hood-esqueness(<–that’s a word…some of y’all might name your future kid that…don’t front) in their life.  You’ll see small glimpses of this exposed for the president from time to time.   I just feel we need a full-blown holiday where we can be 100% Negroes all day long..without being fired…Anyhoooo…that’ll never happen…but real talk, there are definitely some traits attributed to our unique experience that I feel should be embraced and revered.
 
Imperious (Swag)-I’m not sure any other race of people have quite the confidence and boldness that we do.  Brothas, this is the one thing that I think keeps us sistahs rooting for y’all.  Black folks..we set the tone…we make trends trends! Even though swag is sometimes considered over-confidence and a bit cocky…you need that.  The world releases a new statistic every week attacking who we are and what we represent…and still we rise! (Maya Angelou)  This is obviously something that can’t be beaten, hosed, or dragged out of us…it’s in our DNA.  Use it to your benefit daily…it demands respect, attention, and hell…admiration.  With your swag on…you can sell anything to anybody, you can keep a level head in the midst of chaos, and of course you can bag a bad chick.
 
Intuitive- We see through bull-ish…because we’ve seen it all…done it all..we don’t get bamboozled like white folks (s/o to white people).  We just don’t do it.  We’re never on the episodes of Paranormal State having moved into a haunted home thinking we can outsmart a ghost.  Intuitiveness will help you steer clear of  unprofitable decisions, unworthy business partners, and armed robberies.
****This only kicks in full throttle once you’ve fully graduated from “hood”  mentality though…this explains exceptions like First 48, armed robberies, and dope boy baby daddies.
 
Ingenuity- My people, whew…we can make up some ish, can’t we?  I’m sure we’ve invented or “discovered” more things than any other race of people…ever…well, next to E.T.s.  If you don’t believe me…check out ghetto prom…my point exactly.  Whether we’ve obtained the most patents or not, we are geniuses.  The problem, however, is that we seldom use this characteristic to our advantage.  I mean if we can discover the perfect medley of catfish and spaghetti, I’m sure we can win Top Chef, right?  Did you see the many uses we came up with in college for Ramen Noodles?  The challenge is redirecting this energy into something profitable.  We should never be unemployed, hungry, or poor…no excuses…making something out of nothing is our specialty!
 
-Zorah
 
 
 Interesting list Z.  The “hood” is definitely where trends are born.  Generally, this is because in the hood you are forced to be resourceful.  You are forced to know how to make hotness out of a collection of things that otherwise may not be.  I will say, as far as this goes I sense a change however.  Where the hood used to create the look, now it seems that the look is created by folks from the hood, who now have real money.  For example, white tees and jeans definitely stem from the hood where money to buy all the designer label wasn’t present, they created a look that was crispy for them.  The same style parlayed it’s way into mainstream, but now the jeans are $300/pair designer label, instead of levis, and the look must be complimented by sparkling chains and watches and earrings.  I will agree that the hood still makes it trendy.  
 
On a deeper level, as a people so determined to create their own distinct culture while also attempting to assimilate, our greatest success usually comes in finding the delicate balance/blend of these two forces.  Denying all things connected to blackness will increase your chance of getting a job, but maintaining some of the character that seems innate to Blacks, regardless of the address of where you were born, family structure or familial economic standing, will serve to promote you in nearly any career.  I may be mistakenly translating the hood essence you’re discussing to be the qualities and characteristics that have grown to be a part of us out of the overall Black American experience but there are some distinct differences, cultural, that I do believe serve Blacks well, as well as any type of organization, just as the qualities that can be found in other cultures.  The sooner the corporate structure learns to truly appreciate these differences instead of encouraging individuals to hide them, or suggesting that they serve a one-dimensional purpose e.g. hiring black marketing majors to work accounts targeted to blacks, the sooner they will increase effectiveness and profits.  
-Brookes
 
So folks, what other characteristics do you feel that are part of “hood essence” or Black-ness do you feel have cross-over appeal??

 P.S.  Feel free to comment below instead, or in addition to discussing on twitter/FB ow where ever else y’all discuss.

 P.S.S. Hop on over to www.s-choirmusic.com and check out the homie!