In 2017 the Eastern Cape Hip Hop industry is still plagued by lack of identity (rap style & nationally recognised figure), fewer income streams, no one highlight event and no potent media platforms that embrace the culture. We most definitely have dope rappers and amazing beat makers but seemingly we have not explored the culture beyond the mic and bedroom set ups.
This is a result of many factors from the attitude of content creators, to the industry mediators (radio, print & TV) and ultimately the intended audience or consumers. We are yet to cultivate a mutually beneficial synergistic relationship between role players.
The sooner we realise that to establish a lucrative industry, we need to think beyond two turntables and a mic. We need heads with zeal for the culture who are endowed with incredible business acumen, graphic designers to make the game look sexy, media people who understand the culture to advocate on behalf of it and ultimately investors to aid the game with adequate fiscal muscle.
There is more that is required but the sooner we surround the emcee with think tanks to help him/her realise his dream, the better. If we continue to exist in small remote and separated pockets the harder the journey will be. In the Eastern Cape, Hip Hop needs Hip Hop for Hip Hop to rise up. What I mean is every Hip Hop head has a role to play – be it a fan of culture, content creator and/or cat’s in the private/public sector.
Do what you do best promote collaborative efforts, each one teach one, study and embrace the efforts of the forerunners and most importantly give room for the new sound let the kids define their essence.