Brooklyn rapper Fabolous recently shared his thoughts on the state of New York rap and explained why the Big Apple’s music scene has fallen behind other cities like Miami and Atlanta.
From Fab’s perspective, New York artists became too comfortable in making local music rather than mass market anthems.
“I think it gotta step up and be competitive again,” Fab said when asked what can bring New York rap back. “I think New York got into a place where it was almost an arrogant feeling where they were doing stuff and they were always going to get the play and people are always going to know them. The time came where other people started making good music and relatable music. One thing I’ve noticed from traveling for ten years of my career is that a lot of places relate more than to New York City because New York is such a city-city. It’s so fast — it’s different feels, different environments, different things around you and I come from New York. So me going other places, just doing music, it showed me how Cleveland is relatable to Chicago and Chicago is relatable to Houston. They have different little parts about them that make them different but they’re more relatable to each other than they are to New York. It kind of isolated New York a little bit and I think they have gotten isolated musically too. They just want to make music for them instead of making music for the masses.” (Nitecap)
A few weeks ago, fellow Brooklyn rapper Maino also said New York artists have to make music that appeals to other regions.
“Since I came on the scene, which would be like 2008, everybody’s been asking me, ‘What’s the state of New York hip-hop,’ but if you’re actually paying attention to New York hip-hop, there’s actually a lot going on,” Maino explained in an interview with DJ Skee. “It’s just that we haven’t been able to connect with the rest of the country all the time. It’s a lot of great music out there. There’s dudes like Lloyd Banks, you got Jim Jones, you got Fabolous, you got a lot of artists connecting but we got to get back into the habit of making music broad and music that not only New York can vibe to but the West Coast and the South.” (Skee Sports)
In July, The LOX’s Jadakiss credited artists like Maino and Jay-Z for keeping the Big Apple fresh.
“I feel New York is doing d*mn good,” Kiss said in an interview. “You still got me here, [Styles P], Sheek Louch, Fab, Uncle Murda, Maino, Joell Ortiz, Nas, Hov, you know. New cats, Fred the Godson, we good. We’ll be all right. Don’t worry about New York at all. We’re gonna be around. When the trumpets blow, we’re still gonna be here. For real.” (“Femme Fatale Mixshow”)
Last year, LOX’s Styles P pointed out the lack of unity amongst some New York rap acts.
“I think unity among New York rappers is cool,” he said in an interview. “I think if you a New York rapper you bred different and me being a follower of New York rap, being a follower of hip-hop and real emcee’s I can say that I’ve never really heard Kool G. Rap and Rakim on a song — you know it’s a lot of emcees I ain’t hear on a song so I think it’s supposed to be competitive in New York. I think it’s bred to be competitive, I’m cool with everybody else but if you ask me who’s the best, my click of course.” (Miss LS)
Check out Fabolous’ interview below: