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Jineea Butler

Stories by Jineea

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Hip-hop, East Coast swag: LL hasn’t lost his street cred

I had the honor of sitting in on LL Cool J’s private listening session in New York City. He was previewing excerpts from his upcoming release of the G.O.A.T II.

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Breaking the chains: Learning to turn it up so you can turn it down

Rikers Island Correctional Facility in New York is in the news again, this time allegedly for officers brutalizing inmates. I did time at Rikers Island. No, not as an inmate, thank God, but as an employee. It’s another world behind those bars, where only the strong survive.

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Turn it around: A challenge for the hip-hop generation

Lately, hip-hop news has been fueled with beef and rants of all kinds.

Respect begins with us – monitoring our words as well as our actions

"What are we talking about? We talking about fiction or we talking about fact? You talking about fiction? Hold up pardon my back …" – Excerpt from Jay-Z, What We Talking About

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Waiting for ‘someday’ to finish the journey

We shall overcome, we shall overcome, We shall overcome someday; Oh, deep in my heart, I do believe, We shall overcome someday.

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Waiting for ‘someday’ to finish the journey

We shall overcome, we shall overcome, We shall overcome someday; Oh, deep in my heart, I do believe, We shall overcome someday.

Remembering George Orwell’s 1984 in 2013

Was the book 1984 by George Orwell a required school reading for you? If it was you would know that Orwell introduced Big Brother in 1949.

Rapper Macklemore acknowledges ‘White privilege’

Is hip-hop losing its color? Recently rapper Macklemore recognized that it is White privilege that catapulted him to success. In a Rolling Stone cover interview, Macklemore, born Ben Haggerty, said, “If your gonna be a white dude and do this shit, I think you have to take some level of accountability. You have to acknowledge where the art came from, where it is today, how you’re benefiting from it. At the very least, just bringing up those points and acknowledging that, yes, I understand my privilege, I understand how it works for me in society, and how it works for me in 2013 with the success that The Heist has had.”

Hip-hop artists miss a beat by avoiding D.C. march

Beginning this weekend, there will be two celebrations of the 1963 March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom – one on Saturday and another one on Wednesday, the actual anniversary of the march. Yet, I haven’t heard or seen much enthusiasm from the hip-hop community and began to wonder what it is going to take to bridge the gap between these two generations. While no one can argue the importance and significance of the original march, we may have to pull teeth to get this generation to participate wholeheartedly. Let’s examine why.

DJs mix it up in a tribute to 40 years of hip-hop

It’s hard to believe, but on Sunday, hip-hop celebrated its 40th birthday. Yes, the big 4-0. It’s been four decades of creativity, invaluable efforts and love. Do you remember the doubters who said it wouldn’t last? They sure missed the mark.

Hip-hop artists have a responsibility to youth

Since its inception, hip-hop has been a target for problems in the Black community. Forty years later it’s still a topic of discussion. On July 22, Bill O’Reilly launched a tirade of issues in his Talking Points segment of The O’Reilly Factor on Fox News titled President Obama and the Race Problem. O’Reilly attacks African American leadership for having no clue on how to solve the crisis in the Black community and offered his own set of solutions. While O’Reilly and his right wing approach is sometimes uncomfortable to digest, he gave a somewhat valid synopsis on what’s happening in our neck of the woods.

Misguided efforts: Pebbles makes the wrong kind of waves

Pebbles Ward, who is a cast member on the hit reality series South Beach Tow, reached out to the Hip Hop Union for help.

Sure young men, you can ‘sag’ butt it will cost you

Do you ever wonder what message our young men are really sending when their pants are sagging to the point of showing their underwear? Has it crossed your mind that they might be mooning us? Before we can figure it out, they pull up their pants, only for them to gradually fall right back down. Focusing solely on body language, it’s not a stretch to think they are saying, “Kiss my butt.” Or, words to that effect.

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Hip-hop can maintain political momentum, keep candidates accoundable

Hooray! The Associated Press reported that America’s Blacks voted at a higher rate than Whites in 2012 for the first time in history. Was it because there was a Black man running for president, or because threats of voter suppression? Was it a combination of the two? Or, did White America vote in fewer numbers because they felt, like many Blacks have felt for years, that neither candidate represented them and their views?

The Hip-Hop Dilemma, the generation gap

I call it The Hip-Hop Dilemma. The symptoms are all around us. You hate the new direction hip-hop is going in and you hate that the young boys are wearing tight jeans. Still, hip-hop has a tremendous pull, something that you can’t ignore.