Why is there such snobbery towards Hip-Hop?

Hazy992

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Now I LOVE Hip-Hop, it's one of my favourite genres and I listen to it probably every day. So it frankly pisses me off when some people (and I must stress, SOME) start saying that rap isn't real music or that it isn't worth their time, thinking they're better than those that listen to it.

Now I know some rap has its problems, like Lil Wayne and 50 Cent being derogatory to women and the sheer idiocy of the Insane Clown Posse, but how can you lump that nonsense with the golden age rap of Public Enemy, Grandmaster Flash and the like or the more alternative stuff of Tyler The Creator or Immortal Technique? Hip-hop is a valid art form just like other genres of music.

I've even heard some people (including here on The Escapist) say that rap, by definition, isn't music at all! Webster defines music as 'vocal, instrumental, or mechanical sounds having rhythm, melody, or harmony.' Hip-Hop clearly hits these criteria.

BTW I'm not a Hip-Hop elitist or anything like that. I listen to loads of genres; Punk, Metal, Soul, Funk, Pop, Dubstep, D'n'B, Grime. If it sounds good I'll listen to it. It just annoys me that people are so harsh and dismissive of something I love so much.

TLDR; why are people so dismissive of Hip-Hop? It's a legitimate genre of music, and a legitimate art form.


EDIT: I think there needs to be some clarification here. I really don't mind if people don't like the genre. People have made serious, well thought reasons as to why hip-hop isn't for them, and that's fine. I'm not trying to make people like it, I don't think less of you for not liking it and I hope you don't think any less of me for liking it. What I need to stress, and I really need to stress this, is that I want to know why there is such elitism and snobbery towards hip-hop, not why people simply don't care for it.
 

ztara

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i think, and this is from an outside point of view, that to the uneducated a large amount of the subject matter is the same. Not a huge amount of... versatility. I'm personally put off in a large way by the self glorification. The stance toward women is a big deal too, something i can't really set to one side. Also i like music as much as lyrics and, well i think that a lot of Hip Hop (being so heavily based in lyrical stylings) doesn't satisfy my interests.


Like i say im no expert, and their are exceptions. (All praise Akala) but its just not my bag.
 

Hazy992

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ztara said:
i think, and this is from an outside point of view, that to the uneducated a large amount of the subject matter is the same. Not a huge amount of... versatility. I'm personally put off in a large way by the self glorification. The stance toward women is a big deal too, something i can't really set to one side. Also i like music as much as lyrics and, well i think that a lot of Hip Hop (being so heavily based in lyrical stylings) doesn't satisfy my interests.


Like i say im no expert, and their are exceptions. (All praise Akala) but its just not my bag.
See, I have no problem with what people like you have to say. You have genuine, thought out reasons why you don't like the genre. There's genres I don't like and I have my reasons. I just get annoyed with musical snobs who automatically put all rap under one label without giving it any thought and look down on people who listen to it.
 

HardkorSB

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I think you mean RAP, not HIP-HOP.
Anyway, it's the same with everything. If you're not familiar with something and you just get the info bout it from the media, and even that only when it pops up because you're not actively trying to research it, chances are that if you're not into what's popular right now, you're not going to like it. The media are showing mainly things that are easy to "absorb". If I were to get my info on things just from TV and the radio, I wouldn't be that well informed, now would I?
Let's take a genre that seems to be popular on this site, metal. What can I know about metal if I won't look into it? The general idea is that it's just loud noise from the instruments plus some guy screaming to the microphone, while a group of drunk an/or stoned idiots form a mosh pit and attempt to injure one another in it.
Going back to rap, when you look at all the Lil Waynes and the Young Jeezys, you can get the wrong idea about the genre. If someone isn't even willing to take 10 minutes of their time to learn something about it (that's how long it takes thanks to the internet) then it's just not worth it to try and "convert" that person.
What is really annoying is when you say that you don't like a genre to someone and that person will tell you just how wrong you are because you haven't heard the REAL whatever. However when you try to persuade that person to a genre that he doesn't like, he'll just dismiss it without a second thought.
 

The Diabolical Biz

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Sup brother! As a massive fan of 90s Hip-Hop I hear exactly where you're coming from (Illmatic is my favourite album of all time), sometimes these forums can be ridiculous. All I see is people who clearly have never listened to a Hip-Hop song in their life and simply base their opinions of it from some kind of already-ironic stereotype, bizarrely.
 

Hazy992

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HardkorSB said:
I think you mean RAP, not HIP-HOP.
Anyway, it's the same with everything. If you're not familiar with something and you just get the info bout it from the media, and even that only when it pops up because you're not actively trying to research it, chances are that if you're not into what's popular right now, you're not going to like it. The media are showing mainly things that are easy to "absorb". If I were to get my info on things just from TV and the radio, I wouldn't be that well informed, now would I?
Let's take a genre that seems to be popular on this site, metal. What can I know about metal if I won't look into it? The general idea is that it's just loud noise from the instruments plus some guy screaming to the microphone, while a group of drunk an/or stoned idiots form a mosh pit and attempt to injure one another in it.
Going back to rap, when you look at all the Lil Waynes and the Young Jeezys, you can get the wrong idea about the genre. If someone isn't even willing to take 10 minutes of their time to learn something about it (that's how long it takes thanks to the internet) then it's just not worth it to try and "convert" that person.
What is really annoying is when you say that you don't like a genre to someone and that person will tell you just how wrong you are because you haven't heard the REAL whatever. However when you try to persuade that person to a genre that he doesn't like, he'll just dismiss it without a second thought.
You make a fair point. It's just that Hip-Hop seems to get an unfair amount of criticism, at least in my eyes it does.

And BTW, Hip-hop is a genre that is almost always accompanied by rapping so calling it Hip-hop is technically correct ^_^ and anyway thanks to the media, rap has become a loaded word, so I say hip-hop out of personal preference.
 

Casual Shinji

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It must be the large amount of metal that's in the ground over here.

There is rap that I like, but ironically it's the good rap that I don't "get" because it simply isn't my scene.


Rap like this I can appreciate for it's quality and sincerity, but it's very much about black culture, persecution, gang life... Things that I'm totally not familiar with. So it can't really hook me.
 

Hazy992

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The Diabolical Biz said:
Sup brother! As a massive fan of 90s Hip-Hop I hear exactly where you're coming from (Illmatic is my favourite album of all time), sometimes these forums can be ridiculous. All I see is people who clearly have never listened to a Hip-Hop song in their life and simply base their opinions of it from some kind of already-ironic stereotype, bizarrely.
I second that! 90's Hip-hop is amazing (although I'm ashamed to say I've not listened to Illmatic).
 

Kahunaburger

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I think that some people are turned off by lyrics the find offensive and/or negative. Racism also has something to do with it in some cases, as it did with the opposition to jazz and rock.*

*Note: in no way, shape, or form should this remark be construed as implying that people who don't like rap are racist.
 

The Diabolical Biz

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Hazy992 said:
The Diabolical Biz said:
Sup brother! As a massive fan of 90s Hip-Hop I hear exactly where you're coming from (Illmatic is my favourite album of all time), sometimes these forums can be ridiculous. All I see is people who clearly have never listened to a Hip-Hop song in their life and simply base their opinions of it from some kind of already-ironic stereotype, bizarrely.
I second that! 90's Hip-hop is amazing (although I'm ashamed to say I've not listened to Illmatic).
Go do that now. It takes a couple listens to sink in, but it's only 40 minutes long and once you've got it...

Bam.
 

Hazy992

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If you want a good idea of what Hip-hop is capable of you should listen to more alternative stuff:


Also, listen to more international stuff. Some of my favourite hip-hop artists are French
 

Hazy992

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The Diabolical Biz said:
Hazy992 said:
The Diabolical Biz said:
Sup brother! As a massive fan of 90s Hip-Hop I hear exactly where you're coming from (Illmatic is my favourite album of all time), sometimes these forums can be ridiculous. All I see is people who clearly have never listened to a Hip-Hop song in their life and simply base their opinions of it from some kind of already-ironic stereotype, bizarrely.
I second that! 90's Hip-hop is amazing (although I'm ashamed to say I've not listened to Illmatic).
Go do that now. It takes a couple listens to sink in, but it's only 40 minutes long and once you've got it...

Bam.
Gonna hit YouTube now :) Although I have heard NY State of Mind before and liked it (Saints Row 2 has an amazing soundtrack).
 

Gxas

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The above are examples of Rap/Hip-Hop that I enjoy.
There is meaning, such deep meaning, behind the lyrics, and that is why I enjoy it.

When people hear "rap" or "hip-hop", usually, they think "top 40". This, in a nutshell, is what is wrong with people today.

The same goes for all genres though. I heard one girl say, "I don't like any band that is part of a genre with the word 'core' at the end of it." She then went on to listen to My Chemical Romance and Jimmy Eat World. Both of which are considered emo-core bands.

It is a preconceived notion based on other peoples' opinions on the matter which causes people to think, "Oh, there's a lot of people who don't like Fall Out Boy. I've never heard a song of theirs, but they must be terrible musicians. I'll just go listen to All Time Low."

People anger me.

(Did I lose track of my point?)
 

RanD00M

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Well I do like rap even though many might not guess it. As the man in my school that listens to the heaviest music, I still listen to rap. Now I don't listen to a lot of artists, but the artists that I listen to I listen to. Then there are also songs that I like even though I dislike the artist/s but I digress.
Now most of the hatred here stems from lack of knowledge on the subject of rap and hip-hop. Most of the people that say they hate it have most likely only hear the latest hits, which are usually bad. But I'm certain that there are also some that generally dislike it after trying some of the better artists.
 

Something Amyss

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Hazy992 said:
Now I know some rap has its problems, like Lil Wayne and 50 Cent being derogatory to women and the sheer idiocy of the Insane Clown Posse, but how can you lump that nonsense with the golden age rap of Public Enemy, Grandmaster Flash and the like or the more alternative stuff of Tyler The Creator or Immortal Technique? Music is a valid art form just like other genres of music.
The problem being you're trying to define it with classic examples or "alternative" examples. I don't know Tyler the Creator, but Immortal Technique isn't exactly known for his exposure.

You're asking what is at beat a casual audience to dig deeper into something they already don't like. Or, at least, you're asking why they don't like it despite material they'd have to put some effort into finding, despite already not liking the genre.

You're probably not going to win people over with deep cuts if you can't win them over with the greatest hits.
 

Freaky Lou

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Hazy992 said:
Now I know some rap has its problems, like Lil Wayne and 50 Cent being derogatory to women and the sheer idiocy of the Insane Clown Posse, but how can you lump that nonsense with the golden age rap of Public Enemy, Grandmaster Flash and the like or the more alternative stuff of Tyler The Creator or Immortal Technique? Music is a valid art form just like other genres of music.
First off, Tyler the Creator is probably even more derogatory toward women than 50 Cent or Lil Wayne.

That said, I'm a fan of rap/hip-hop as well, and yeah, I've noticed snooty people who don't really know anything about the genre decrying it as not music or whatever. If someone just doesn't like the music, fine, but when people act like they're better than others because they're unable to appreciate a musical style, then that's pretty aggravating.

I usually throw Lupe Fiasco at people because he defies just about every negative stereotype I can think of, and is my favourite rapper ever.
 

Hazy992

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CthulhuMessiah said:
Hazy992 said:
Music is a valid art form just like other genres of music.
Wut?

Anyway, I don't like it because it isn't as appealing to me as much as any other genre of music is.
Haha meant to put rap music. Thanks for spotting that!