Is Listening to Hip Hop Immoral? No!

– Over the years, people have been surprised by my ardour for hip-hop, especially rap. How can I be a practicing Catholic and still like rap music?( hip-hop music) I’ve always been an advocate for music. Ever since I was 10 years old, music has been a huge part of my life. When I developed into my teenage years, I fell in love with hip-hop culture. Now, I’m not here to glorify rap music and to say that all of it is acceptable to listen to. The reality is is that so much better of hip-hop has fallen victim to what civilization says it means to be happy. The genre often mentions sexuality, materialism, and influence. That is undeniable. Nonetheless, I believe that there’s a difference between glorification for its own point and expressing these topics for the sake of telling their tales. Lecrae, who is a rapper himself, formerly said in a TED talk, that hip-hop came from people seeking to find positivity in their own lives amidst sustaining through music, dance, and self-expression. The music is naturally gritty and violent, but coming from a culture where there is poverty, busted the house and vicinities, that isn’t to be a surprise.

However, I find that hip-hop is not a culture that has been a bad influence on me. Underneath the surface of what the culture was meant to be, is a theme of unity, adoration, and peace. Lecrae stated that rap consisted of depicting violence and substance abuse in a negative daylight. It consisted of endorsing serenity and finding the positive in life. However, as hour went on, and as people continued to misunderstand what hip-hop was, the genre evolved. Many would think hip-hop felt misinterpret, due to the stereotypes that were planted on those within the culture, and rap music began to take a more dark and gritty turn, espousing the stereotype as an behave of defiance.

From here the genre evolved into some of what we see today. Nonetheless, many rappers have taken this growth and have applied it , not to extol sex, materialism, and strength, but to incorporate these topics to point audiences back to what hip-hop was always meant to be about, namely unity, positivity, and love. And I’m not talking about Christian rappers here. I’m talking about mainstream, popular rappers that are very prominent on the radio. During my time being exposed to hip-hop, I found that I’m extremely picky about who I listen to. I have to ask myself, will this set dreams into my head that will lead me away from virtue, or will I be enriched by this person’s story.
Hip Hop Artist
I recognize that every person has a different threshold, and it’s alright for people to have an sentiment about rap, but to say that all of rap music is a awful affect is a bit of a extend. I can candidly say that rap has not been able to took off my sect, but has candidly enriched it.( hip-hop music) Thank you so much for watching. Click here to subscribe, and please click here for more videos. Woo!.

Deceived – New Single to Hear from Heartless

Deceived – New Single to Listen Too


Heartless creates a dynamic beat over a strong bass backbone that is the perfect setting for the profanity free lyrics in his newest single, “Deceived”


A song that will have your body moving from the first note, “Deceived” has a classic club style that will instantly hook listeners and will remain at the top of their favorite playlists for years to come.

Lendell Black, ubiquitously known as Heartless, is an American rapper and hip-hop artist. Hailing from Pittsburgh, Heartless is popularly known for his profanity-free and upbeat music, and according to some is another “Bone Crusher” in the making. However, according to Black, ” I have my own style”, which is rightly so as his music is known to strike a chord, thus making it a fulfilling yet exciting experience for his audience.

“…And everyone that listened to any of my music has the same reaction, ‘no profanity in it, but it still has that gritty feel.’ I like that because that let’s me know I’m accomplishing what I wanted in creating music with no profanity.” — Heartless

Is Hip Hop Really Dead?

Is Hip Hop Really Dead

I think that hip hop dedicated emcee Nas raised the debate. Now it is up to us to answer yes or no to this interrogation.

hip hop

However, I think it would be senseless just to debate on whether hip hop is dead or not. Our answers should be full of nuance instead of being blinded with a common artistic blur.

Since its creation in the Bronx, NYC, in the late 6O’s, hip hop has often been in a 911 emergency state. Real, authentic hip hop emerged from the street, mainly from the black commnunity and was aimed prior at street audiences. Although a common misconception that hip hop is about self expression only is widely accepted, this point is often totally misunderstood.

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An emcee is supposed to express himself, but a lot of other artists do- without having any hip hop spirit in their way of expression. If hip hop was about expression of self only, then acts like Marilyn Manson and Emo boys would be hip hop too…

You are hip hop, not only by proving your emceeing skills, but by carrying the heritage of hip hop culture with you which means to me, that, regardless of your skin color, you can relate to hip hop culture in one way or another. That’s being hip hop to me.

But I digress…the question is to know whether what we call contemporary hip hop music is dead or not.

Many people who have grown up with masterminds such as Ice T, NWA, Public Enemy, Grandmaster Flash might be really disappointed with the turn hip hop is taking right now.

Even in the early 80’s hip hop wasn’t expected to become the commercial value it is right now. Emcees and DJs did their art much more for their own pleasure and for their wide street audience.

Emcees like Public Enemy and NWA played the role of social commentators and opposed some resistance to the US discriminatory policies against Black Folks. Their words had some weight and were largely supported by people living in the hood.

Nowadays, hip hop is totally different. Not only has it become commercial, but its audience has changed. I sometimes have the feeling that it has lost its original meaning. Many of you, commercial rappers rolling in your benzos with your hoes and jewels have buried hip hop alive. You made the whole world believe that hip hop was only about the grand hustle and making big dollars.

Many of you, weak underground rappers have stabbed the soul of hip hop. How can you, clowns in the game, make people believe that you can bless a mic? Regardless of your color, you HAVE to be skilled and to be convincing to rap!

More strikingly, a great majority of you, suburban youths, have spat on real hip hop like Nas raps while revering so called rappers who are closer to pop artists than anything else!

However, I do believe that hip hop in its essence is still alive. It will live on as long as the spirit of Maurice Malone’s hip hop shop will be carried on. It will survive, as long as real people will talk about real things. It will survive, if only unexperienced but nevertheless skilled emcees will accept to learn from their predecessors.

Real hip hop is the reality of the streets and cannot be summarized with the commercial crap we see on MTV.

Hip Hop will live on if rappers accept to think less about the money and more about their art.

Hip hop has a future, but not without you, emcees, breakdancers, sprayers, DJS, listeners and anybody else involved in the rap game. It is all up to you.

The Sociology of Music

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The sociology of music is concerned with the congenial relations of the overtones of a tone, as well as with the relations of the motifs among each other, the melodies among each other, and the sequences among each other.
But it is also concerned with the congenial relations between the overtones, the motifs, and the sequences.

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In this context, the sociology of music not only corresponds to the system of the inner-human, but also to the outer human social relations, which it describes realistically by means of the mentioned parameters.

How far such a description of the sociology of music can go on the surface is demonstrated by the hierarchic structure of classical music, and on to the dictatorship of the masses in twelve-tone music, where all the tones of the scale and their parameters (pitch, duration, amplitude, etc. have the same value, and in the technique of serial composing – the perfectioned twelve-tone music – in which all these parameters are applied like patterns manipulated by arithmetic operations.

In the field of inner hearing, but also based on the physiology of the outer musical instruments, there are fixed nature-given orders of the sound-space which, after their systematic investigation, lead us to infer a nature-given sociology of music, because they express themselves as firm congenial relations of the tones among each other, but also of sound-spaces among each other.

These natural, sociological orders of the overtone-spectrum are applied by the great musical artists in the macrocosm of their music – in the outer structure of their compositions – where they can easily be traced and identified by way of analysis.

In this context it should be noted that an outer deviation from the nature-given inner order of music creates the impression of dissonance within the listener; a phenomenon that indicates a rift between the macrocosm and the microcosm of music, and which appears each time the logic of the macrocosm has deviated from the logic of the microcosm.

The fact that we recognize a dissonance so directly confirms that in our mental faculty of perception there already exists an awareness of harmony being the organizing principle in music, and that we have at our disposal a built-in, musical mental-spiritual capability for perceiving sociological order.

Being a Hip Hop Songwriter

The liberating aspect of being a songwriter is realizing how open the possibilities are for creating an expression that no one else can say in the exact same way. The words come from a mind that has collected its own opinions and formulated questions and solutions that reflect the individual’s character. Character is groomed or mauled by experience. I could never write about something I haven’t seen or dreamed. I could never convince listeners if the experience that I am singing about is not my own.

In hip-hop music, the question of ownership is a fiery debate when it comes to lyrics. If an artist is suspected of delivering ghost written material he/she is discredited and ridiculed. Listeners often feel cheated when they discover that their favorite emcee is only a performer, a pretty face that may be more marketable than the writer himself. The fact is there are hardly any writers left in the hip-hop music that presents itself through videos and three-minute radio singles in this new millennium. Some people get offended when they hear the jeers from underground hip-hop gurus who claim that the music has been commercialized. But the truth is today’s hip-hop is more about marketing than it is about lyrics. The songs are not motivated by experience or even clever modern approaches to written and spoken word poetry any more. Famous fashion designers are saving loads of money on advertisements. Why dip into the budget when rappers are willing to promote their lines for free in music videos? What was once a powerful art form that gave voices to the unheard protests of the black youth in America has now been gobbled up by our nation’s evil twin, capitalism.

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I was performing at an open mic at the Blue Note, a venue for live hip-hop performances in Chicago, when a guy approached me and asked me when I was going to give up hip-hop. “Rap is dead. You gotta start trying something else if you wanna be for real.” I told him, “I’m a writer. If I stop rapping I’ll just have stacks of poems all over my room that will never be heard.”
Ralph Ellison writes about an era when black people and their achievements went undocumented in history books. Invisible Man is a novel that touches on many aspects of the African American’s struggle to be heard and included in the great documents that would allow the future generations to see evidence of the black man’s existence in society. For the first time in history, a black man’s thoughts and political opinions could rant over airwaves and through speakers declaring to the world “I am here. I am not invisible.” For the first time in history, blacks are the ones who decide what is documented in their sixteen bars of declaration. This phenomenon is called hip-hop, and even though the version we get through videos and “radio friendly” mixes is watered down and commercialized, the potential and possibilities that hip-hop has presented to African American writers and visionaries are still present.
I will never discard hip-hop for a new title or genre just because it is being victimized and exploited. I’d rather embrace the possibilities that hip-hop gave birth to. When I was influenced by the culture it was new and powerful. In its original form hip-hop has always been a revolutionary attitude, a political state of mind. And when the modern day minstrel shows close their curtains hip-hop will be where the revolution is. “THIS IS PROTECTED BY THE RED, THE BLACK, AND THE GREEN…WITH A KEY, SISSY!!!”
Hip-hop nation, there’s potential in this. So why we playin’ with it?

Rising Hip-Hop Stars call Pittsburgh Home

Rising Hip-Hop Stars in Pittsburgh

An outsider looking in on Pittsburgh’s hip-hop music scene today would find it bursting at the seams, poised to blast through Pennsylvania’s borders to engulf an industry thirsty for new talent. But insiders know recent successes are partially the result of an uphill, seemingly Sisyphean struggle by local artists over the past 20 years to reach the top of the genre. Rather than splitting for easy deals in cities with established hip-hop scenes like New York and Atlanta, Pittsburgh artists and producers dug their roots deeply into home soil, fine-tuning works from upstart studios and emerging artists since the early ’90s. The streets, the Internet and stores such as Time Bomb Clothing in East Liberty served as distributors for mix tapes churned out by artists from ID Labs studio in Lawrenceville, Ya Momz House studio in East Liberty and others.

The creation of Rostrum Records in 2003 by L.A. Reid protege Benjy Grinberg opened doors to major labels like Warner Bros. and Atlantic Records that hungry artists have been kicking down ever since. By the time the Pittsburgh Hip-Hop Awards Show emerged in 2007, the scene had definitely grown to a level worth celebrating.

Time Bomb owner Brian Brick compares Pittsburgh’s hip-hop music market to that of cities like Oakland, Calif., that have had years of success with independent record labels and studios.

“Pittsburgh is becoming a lot more like those cities because MCs [rappers] are starting to support each other,” Mr. Brick says. “People are starting to realize we’ve got that flavor and they’re going to ask for more.”

The absence of a hip-hop radio station in the city and a dearth of performance venues continue to serve as obstacles for local artists. Although they perform across the country, when they come home there are few clubs willing to cater to hip-hop crowds, which they stereotype as rough. East Liberty’s Shadow Lounge and Millvale’s Mr. Small’s Theater are two of the few places that regularly feature hip-hop on stage.

Despite the challenges, hip-hop artists are thriving in Pittsburgh. And with artists like Wiz Khalifa receiving international acclaim for local efforts, the formerly underground scene is finally in position to bring the entire region into the spotlight.

“Pittsburgh has some of the greatest rappers and producers in the world,” says artist Jasiri X. “The only thing we’re missing is the managers, lawyers and labels. and I think with the success Rostrum is having, it’s a prime time for some other labels to have more success as well.”

Masai Turner, the MC of Formula 412, describes the city’s rap scene as “raw and diverse.”

“We have everything from an all-black live hip-hop band to guys that talk about very commercial and popular themes.”

Adds Larrimer rapper S. Money, “Pittsburgh has history — the jazz and blues scene were there. The city is growing with this new music industry and the’ Burgh has a lot to offer.

Lendell Black – Heartless

Ubiquitously known as Heartless, is an American rapper and hip-hop artist. Hailing from Pittsburgh and brought up in the Homewood area, Heartless was drawn to music from a young age. And to this day, his passion and devotion towards music has only deepened. Heartless is popularly known for his profanity-free and upbeat music, and according to some is another Bone Crusher in the making. However, according to Black, ” I have my own style”‘, which is rightly so as his music is known to strike a chord, thus making it a fulfilling yet exciting experience for his audience.

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   The emerging artist has big plans for the future and aims to play live across the state and country, including his home city of Pittsburgh. Black is working hard, recording new songs and creating his own music with a fiery passion. Contrary to his stage name, Heartless has his heart in the right place. He has a sense of commitment and believes in giving back to the community, which is why he wishes to participate in philanthropic activities. He has expressed an interest in working with charitable causes, particularly with a Mixed Connective Tissue Disease (MCTD) association, as it hits close to home.



Although this Larimer native made a recent detour to work in Atlanta’s Hot Beats Studio, his representation of the Steel City and its role in his career hasn’t waned. Starting off as one of the lead rappers for the Lincoln group The Government put S-Money on the path toward rising stardom with a brief deal with Rostrum and a hit single, “I’m the Man,” in 2008. After the Rostrum deal fell through, the rapper fell back into street life and out of the rap game until he emerged with the mix tape “Married to the Streets” last year. Now under new management with Fab 5 Entertainment, S-Money is making a name in the Atlanta club scene and recently had his 16-bar game lauded by rap impresario Bun-B of UGK.


East Liberty

Raising the ire of conservatives and the blood pressure of Tea Party members is a top priority for one of the city’s premier political MCs. Originally a Chicago native, the vocal activist was thrown into the national spotlight with his 2007 “Free the Jena 6,” a commentary on a racially charged court case out of Jena, La. He was the first hip-hop artist to receive the August Wilson Center for African-American Culture Fellowship last year, the same year his release “American History X” earned him six Pittsburgh Hip-Hop Awards, including Album of the Year. Recent video releases, including the song “What if the Tea Party Was Black,” raised his profile even higher nationally with more than 200,000 downloads and thousands of comments. His latest video singles include “Real Gangstas,” which takes on executives of Wall Street institutions, and “Dr. King’s Nightmare,” a response to Glenn Beck’s rally on the anniversary of the March on Washington. In addition to hosting the Internet radio show “This Week With Jasiri X,” he has been hard at work on his latest album, “Ascension,” which is scheduled for release in October through Wandering Worx Entertainment.


Point Breeze

The latest addition to the Rostrum Records family, Mac Miller’s skillful rhymes, humorous themes and upbeat demeanor are catching the nation by storm. After the Allderdice grad built a local buzz by selling homemade mix tapes on the streets and through the internet, his 2009 release, “The High Life,” gained widespread interest with about 30,000 downloads. Videos from his latest project with Rostrum, “K.I.D.S.” have received more than 2.5 million views on YouTube since its release earlier this month. The 18-year old will embark on his first tour as a Rostrum artist with label mate Boaz this fall.



Pittsburgh’s Shakespeare of the streets, Boaz is easily one of the strongest lyricists among the region’s hard-core rappers. Also a member of the Govament crew, Bo moved thousands of units with his first solo release, “The Phenomenal,” in 2007. He went on to drop the critically acclaimed “Monumental Music” in 2008. After releasing “The Audiobiography” last year, he’s pressed on with the mix tape “Selling a Dream” this year and is set to put out “The Audiobiography 2” this fall under Point Blank Productions. He’s scheduled to start the Smokers’ Club tour with Mac Miller and national artists Curren$y and Big K.R.I.T. this fall.



The shining star of local hip-hop skyrocketed from independent distribution of the acclaimed 2008 album “Show and Prove” to briefly surpassing Jay-Z and 50 Cent on iTunes hip-hop charts last year. After ending a brief stint with Warner Bros. Records last year, he was quickly snapped up by Atlantic Records in June. With offers to tour with emerging rap superstar Drake, an appearance at New York’s annual Rock the Bells festival in June, and the label of MTV’s Hottest Breakthrough MC of 2010, the self-proclaimed Prince of the City won’t be knocked off of his throne anytime soon. He kicks off the 70-city “Waken Baken” tour in Philadelphia in September and is set to release a new album with Atlantic in 2011.


North Side

Few hip-hop groups in the nation, let alone the city, can compare their work to that of Formula 412. The five-man live band uses a hip-hop base to create sounds fused with rock, funk and old-school soul music. Led by emcee Masai Turner, guitarist Byron “Nasty” Nash, drummer Dennis “Young D” Garner Jr., bass player “Big Cliff” Foster and keyboarder Akil Esoon, the group has performed with several national acts, most recently with Method Man and Redman at Altar Bar in the Strip District. The group will kick off the College Music Journal Conference in New York this fall and is scheduled to release the album “Reality Show” later this year.