Hip-Hop pioneer Rakim recently talked about witnessing Jay-Z achieve success in the rap game and explained why artists should be inspired by his accomplishments.
Rakim also said the fellow New York-bred emcee has opened the door for younger generations.
“I think as far as records, business, if it’s clothing, Jay-Z man,” Rakim said in an interview about his current favorite rapper. “We gotta start respecting those that’s making a large foot print in the game and when you look at what Jay-Z’s doing from his records to his business moves to his clothing to bong bong to his bong bong, that’s the measuring stick right now for all of the young brothers coming up. Don’t do what he’s doing, do as he’s doing and as you learn what made him successful. Don’t follow his footsteps but figure out what made him successful and get that paper y’all.” (Blok TV)
Last year, Jay talked about nearing 40 and still wanting to have a long-run in hip-hop.
“I hear it all the time — ‘Yo, he should let the young guys, the new generation of guys come in,'” Jay explained in an interview. “But you don’t become the front-runner in music because someone lets you. You have to claim your shoes…If you grow up listening to hip-hop, you love hip-hop and that’s the end of it. But if you’re a 30 year-old rapper still trying to make music like you’re 15, then you’re making it narrow. At my age, I can’t relate to a 15 year-old. I deal with mature and relevant topics for my age group — it has to all be based on true emotions. The more diversity and the more mature we make hip-hop, the bigger the net you cast.” (Reuters)
Rakim also discussed the age-factor with SOHH last fall.
“Yeah, I think what’s happening is, rappers are becoming, especially for people that love a rapper, rap and hip-hop come to party,” Rakim explained. “You can’t just put it down. It’s not likesports where you know, you lose a step. You can lose skills in rapping of course, but it’s a little different man and I think sitting back and watching the R&B genre, you got, at any awards show and you see brothers like Al Green come out and tear it down. It’s longevity in R&B…I just touched 40, but still, I don’t plan on stop listening to rap anytime soon and I don’t plan stop rhyming no time soon and it’s that tug-of-war with the fans. Every time you see the fans or go to a show, they’re like ‘Yo, do another album,’ so it’s like that love between the two, the fans and your music. I think we should stretch out our age limit as far as hip-hop ’cause if that’s the case, I think when brothers grow up they just want to leave rap entirely and listen to other genres of music so I think there is room for a little mature sound of hip-hop, for the older, grown and sexy, whatever you wanna call it.” (SOHH)
Last month, Jay-Z broke ground at the construction site of a new arena which will be the future home of his NBA team, the New Jersey Nets.
Governor David Paterson, Mayor Michael Bloomberg, and Brooklyn Borough President Marty Markowitz today joined Forest City Ratner Companies Chairman and CEO Bruce Ratner, Barclays PLC President Robert E. Diamond, Jr., and NETS investor and cultural icon Shawn “Jay-Z” Carter at the ceremonial groundbreaking of the Barclays Center at Atlantic Yards. The 18,000-seat world-class sports and entertainment arena is being developed by Forest City Ratner Companies (FCRC), which will operate the arena in partnership with Mikhail Prokhorov‘s Onexim Sports & Entertainment. The Barclays Center will host more than 200 events annually, including professional and collegiate sports, concerts, family shows, and NETS Basketball. (Market Watch)
Check out Rakim speaking on Jay-Z below: