Log in Sign up

Ghostwriting in Hip-Hop

In modern Hip-Hop, there are not many traditional principles that still hold firm. However, one area which still brings disrepute is ghostwriting. Ghostwriting refers to writing material for someone who is the named author.
Since the early days of Hip-Hop being an underground urban movement that developed in South Bronx (New York City), "thou shalt not seek ghostwriters" has always been seen as the first commandment of Hip-Hop. The idea can be best explained by Kendrick Lamar, "I cannot call myself the best rapper if I have a ghostwriter. If you’re saying you’re a different type of artist and you don’t really care about the art form... then so be it." 

Ghostwriting simply diminishes the perception and status of a rapper. For years, rumors have come to the forefront concerning Kanye West hiring ghostwriters and it has ultimately hurt his credibility, decreased his perceived skill set and resulted in many leaving him out in "Greatest MCs of All Time" debates. Of course, Kanye rumors lack hardcore evidence but the mere assumption unfortunately taints his name. In addition, a similar path has been drawn for Drake. After Meek Mill exposed Quentin Miller as Drake's ghostwriter - Drake has struggled to find credibility. His magnum opus, Take Care, has been largely reduced to being a The Weeknd project due to the large input from his OVO label-mate.
Ghostwriting allegations has seen Drake move from an elite rapper into being perceived as a pop star. Drake's inability to focus on his skill set and more on musicality illustrates how he may simply be "a different artist" as Kendrick puts it - one far less focused on the art form. Contrasting to traditional Hip-Hop, there seems to be an increased acceptance of ghostwriting as many modern acts distance themselves from being rappers, in favor of being "rockstars" (Lil Uzi Vert). Essentially, due to distinct differences in traditional rap and today's melody rap - there's an evident shift in criteria and standards. Traditional rap is based on showing skill, exhibiting lyricism and storytelling whilst modern day rap is more melodic, technology influenced and repetitive. The discrepancy of ghostwriting lies in these paradox arguments. 

For Hip-Hop fundamentalists, ghostwriting seems to be a growing practice that acts as a thorn in your belief but there seems to also a new generation of rap that prides itself on following rap's only commandment - Joey Bada$$, Kendrick Lamar, Logic and Meek Mill alike. There will always be a silvering in Hip-Hop in the midst of ongoing change.
Older Post
Newer Post

Leave a comment

Close (esc)

Popup

Use this popup to embed a mailing list sign up form. Alternatively use it as a simple call to action with a link to a product or a page.

Public Service Announcement

The ESAHH Team is currently implementing a re-branding exercise to give our audience a better experience. You can expect to see a whole lot of quality content, exciting brand collaborations, exclusive interviews, competitions, merchandise & much more.

Search

Shopping Cart

Your cart is currently empty.
Shop now