Just picked up the March issue of The Source. Damn, why did I stop reading this rag after being a subscriber back in the day? Oh, that’s right, because rap started to, and continues to, suck. But The Source doesn’t. Yeah, you get more typos than your average Corporate BS Magazine, but fuck that. It’s all about Communication, which ain’t about spelling and grammar, but about Voice and Opinion. The Source has both. Plus, they seem pretty down with the idea that rap has changed and not for the better. Seems like the editorial slant is to get back what made rap vital in the first place: Voice and Opinion.
Anyway, this is a good issue, but with a very uncool piece about Detroit. Rehashed shit, this is, with nothing new under the Cold Grey Motor City Sky. Knowing what I know about the ‘zine biz, I can tell you that this piece sat on someone’s desk for a while before some advertiser pulled out and they needed to fill some pages quick.
But there is a pretty great Where Are They Now piece on Paris. Yeah, dude is a millionaire stock broker. No shit. They play it all off like he’s no sell out, but it’s weird. Read the damn thing and see how you feel yourself. Can you go from Armed Insurrection to MSNBC-junkie and still be down with a 10 Point System? To judge Paris “Guilty ‘fore proven innocent” is wrong, but I still feel betrayed by a brother who promised to put a cap in my ass just because I’m White.
Are There Any More Real Revolutionaries?
Browse the whole issue via youtube.
Black Panther Hits Wall Street
Paris’s anti-government lyrics once targeted George Bush Sr. Today, Oscar Jackson explains why he’s trading stocks–instead of rhymes—and how he still intends to implement his master plan for change.
Words by Michael Datcher. Photos by Eric Butler.
Hip-hop was Black music. It’s becoming harder to tell these days. Is this music defined by the culture that inspires it or the white palms that purchase the CDs and sign the checks? In 1990, when Paris released his first album, The Devil Made Me Do It, his rap was politically charged. He emerged as the “Black Panther” of hip-hop. He joined X-Clan and Public Enemy, stalking the frontlines with a banana-clip attack on American capitalism, racism, and “house n****-ism.”
“Originally, hip-hop was created by and for us,” Paris explains, sitting in the office of his Danville, California, home. “Now it’s all about making money. It’s not really art anymore.” Over the din of MSNBC’s broadcasting stock quotes, his voice has the same bass conviction that compelled neophyte nationalists to stick his posters on their college dormitory walls. His brown is still furrowed, eyes still piercing beneather a black San Francisco Giants cap. The books those eyes have read line the bookshelves like place markers in his education. African Origins of Civilization, Guerilla Warfare, Black Robes, White Justice, The Shadow of the Panther.
Oscar Jackson Jr. was always studious as a child. “To the point where I was socially awkward,” he recalls, smiling at the thought. In high school, he found a rsweet reason to work on the stage presence that would later serve him well as a rapper. “I was on the cock hunt, that’s all I was really concerned with.” His father, a physician with a private practice, sensed the distraction. “My pop used to ride me so much,” Paris remembers. “He’s say, ‘You can’t tell me who your girldfriend was last year, but the grades you make today will follow you to college and for the rest of your life.’ That’s some heavy shit to put on a kid, but it made sense to me.”