Lets take a moment to live in the hypothetical. Let’s pretend the phrase “You better get your hand out of my pocket” was never uttered in the Audobon on February 21, 1965, and a young Muhammed Ali knocked out a would be assassin with swift retribution. Let us envision a Malcolm X’s legacy extended by 50 years and filled with mentorship not only to young practitioners of justices but to potential leaders and activists emerging from the cornerstone of culture, Hip-Hop, like the Justice League NYC or Dream Defenders. With that in mind, let us juxtapose our ideology against the current state of Hip Hop or Rap Music and ask ourselves two questions: “Would Hip-Hop be different?” “What Would Malcolm X Do?” The ultimate OG the community lost and humanity suffered a set-back. Would the poignant perspective of pleasure over politics be replaced with the purpose of his progress.
Would the purveyors of ignorance ever had the chance to evolve into culture vultures… Some would say no, not at all, most would hope YES! With the current youth generation acknowledging profanity as passion oozing thru the cracks in our character the lines between negativity and popularity are now becoming blurred and more eschewed than ever. But what if, just what if Malcom X were alive to mentor a young and motivated Wutang, or educated NWA on how to harness their social power into social justice, or introduced to 36 Mafia to Allah, or Saved DMX from the hell of emotional anguish, or Taught Soulja Boy how to be a General instead of traps first Infantry, or taught the east coast how to get out the trap of Trap with the facts instead of funk. At the very least, we truly believe the subject matter would be broader and more socially prolific. Not that we are judging or believe profanity limits artistry but if the direction of the culture matched the hopes of the people, the music would be as diverse as the positivity and comradere that goes with social and economic change. Maybe, most to the Hip-Hop world’s favorite leader, activist and/or artist would be the same person. But thats just a thought.
Next week, The Source led by our owner L. Londell McMillan in conjunction with X-Legacy will be hosting the 90th Birthday and celebration of Malcom X’s life and Legacy. The event will take place at The Shabazz Center (formerly Audobon Ballroom where he was martyred). This space has been completely transformed and now is dedicated to the life of Malcolm X and Dr. Betty Shabazz. The Source will be hosting an Open Mic with artists, rappers and poets who are inspired by Malcolm X and guided by his teachings and principles. Come join us at the Shabazz Center this Tuesday at 6pm. Make sure you also stay tuned for events and programs celebrating the positivity of change. #XLife