Three members of the new school rap clique YBN, Nahmir, Cordae, and Almighty Jay recently sat down with Peter Rosenberg for his Open Late With Peter Rosenberg for a little bit of profile digging. Testing their Hip-Hop knowledge, Rosenberg queried the trio to drop the name of a member of the Wu-Tang Clan and unsurprisingly, YBN Almighty Jay responded and admitted he was not familiar with who the Wu-Tang Clan was. To add more fire to the disgruntlement, when the topic of “going back” came into discussion, he also did not hesitate to admit that he overall disregards Hip-Hop history.
According to Complex, the topic of Wu-Tang came into play when the host asked the trio about the rappers they study after, and the Blac Chyna-affiliate responded by admitting he is not fond of digging in the crates and considers himself to be a sole listener of “generational music.”
“I ain’t gonna lie; I never went that far back. I listen to generational music,” he said. “If it’s in right now, that’s what I listen to. It might be weird and stuff, people be like, ‘You don’t know the history of rap and you’re a rapper,’ but like I don’t go back that far to listen to music.”
He later told Rosenberg the “oldest” rapper he has ever listened too is Lil’ Wayne. He later confirmed his nix Hip-Hop knowledge when he was asked if he was a fan of legendary Hip-Hop collective the Wu-Tang Clan. The 18-year-old rapper immediately shook his head saying he “ain’t go back that far,” and confessed to being oblivious about the clan, “No disrespect, I don’t know who that is.”
He went on to clarify himself: “I don’t even know Wu-Tang. I don’t know none of they songs. I don’t even know what they look like.”
Is this something a new school rapper should be proud of? Without any doubt, anyone seeking to touch on the art of rap through performance should be well-versed about its history. And clearly, for the Texas native YBN crew, Almighty Jay, in particular, this case study was not a priority for them. Yet, they still made the decision to enter a profession that has been in practice for over four decades. This heedless mentality only reveals the true intentions of an “artist” when stepping into the game of music. Is passion a factor? Or, is it that of fame? Wouldn’t an artist in tune with their musical genre put a value on its history?