Is VH1's Hip Hop Honors Insulting Southern Rappers?

Categories: Rap Round Table
Some rappers happen to be thoughtful, intelligent people. Every Monday (that isn't a national holiday) Rocks Off will have some of them hear discussing issues relevant to their culture.

Photo illustration by John Seaborn Gray
This Week's Panel: Chamillionaire, Paul Wall, Chalie Boy, Hima Sneed, Thurogood Wordsmith and Church.

Not Invited: J-Bar. Have you heard his "Daze" song? Yuck. It's awful. He makes Soulja Boy look like Rakim. Of course, Soulja Boy is on the song too.

This Week's Prompt: VH1 has chosen to honor "The Dirty South" at this year's Hip Hop Honors, airing next Monday, June 7. The best sound bite we've heard so far came from Scarface. Here's a bit from his interview:

"I'm hip-hop, man. I'm not going [to the Honors] because I feel slighted. Even though it was a nice gesture, I feel like it's just a pacifier. They're like, 'Let's give these niggas down there a pacifier so they can stop feeling left out. We'll make Luke and all these niggas down there look funny,' you know? 'Let's put a plate of fried chicken and some watermelon and let's just do some nigga-ass shit.'"

So, is the fact that VH-1 is honoring only the South at this show like a teacher having a separate awards ceremony for all of her ESL kids because they wouldn't have won anything if they were measured against the entire student body? Or should this be viewed as a cementing of the ever-increasing role the region is playing in the continuing history of hip hop?

Paul Wall: I wonder if this means there won't be any other artists from the South that get honored after this? But what if they didn't honor any artists from the South at all? I'd be more pissed about that. I'm really excited that they're honoring Rap-A-Lot. J Prince gave everybody the blueprint on how to run an independent record label. Everyone, not just the South. He definitely deserves it.

And I'm so honored to be involved at all, I still can't believe I'm a part of this. So I'm not in any position to complain about the South getting honored, and not worthy to question why. Scarface is one of the original gangster rappers that ever did it. He's somebody I admire and look up to, and somebody I've always been a fan of.

So I feel like he has every right to say and feel however he wants. It seems like VH1 has been honoring a lot of artists from different regions, and rightfully so; it's been mostly the pioneers from New York. I'm just honored to be a part of it, and proud that they're honoring the Houston culture and music scene.

Church: I think it is messed up if you look at it from Face's perspective, since he is one the vets in the game. But from a newer MC standpoint, I'll take anything they give us. Honor is honor at the end of the day. I think the south is getting a lot of burn and it's not a big secret, so if it was measured against the entire student body it's a good chance of winning also.

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