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On The Roots newest album ‘. . . and then you shoot your cousin,” one of the most powerful tracks is ‘When the People Cheer.’ Each stanza is written from a different perspective. The third stanza, Black Thought’s stanza, is written from the perspective of a sex addict that has reached both a financial and existential low because he is enslaved to sexual pleasures. He knows that what he is doing is wrong, but he can no longer resist the strip clubs. He turns in to an after-hours joint to blow his last dollar on a lap dance.

Netflix’ new documentary Hip Hop Evolution is a history of the development and rise of Hip Hop and Rap. In one of the interviews, Ice T, a primeval purveyor of Gangster Rap, talks about his early rhymes: “I was just writing about my reality.” He was trying to capture “the laid back vibe of reality.” The people in the neighborhood listened because they recognized their life in his words. According to Ice Cube, another early Gangster Rapper, Ice T wrote rhymes that “were our version of what a day in the life of Los Angeles was like.” They were not trying to create a new genre. They wanted to fetter their daily insanity with verse.


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