Thursday, June 10, 2004

Today in Hip Hop/Urban History

I'll never forget when this happened; just turned on MTV News and they were assisting Luke to a jail cell. He was slapping hands, wearing a 2 Black, 2 Strong, 2 Live t-shirt.

Today in 1990,a Florida state court declared As Nasty As They Wanna Be by rap artists The 2 Live Crew to be legally obscene. The Supreme Court later overturns the state court ruling. It was a significant battle over First Amendment rights and sparked a political firestorm.

Funny when it happened, more people where starting to actually buy the album. The whole thing of "obscenity" is playing out these days with the new name "indecency". The controvesy was jump started not by rap music but by the Super Bowl half time show in January. Compared to Janet and Howard Stern, rap music has not had to endure any political jabs. Whether that will continue remains to be seen; Eminem has a new record coming out later this year and GW Bush is up for re-election. If he makes Eminen's record an issue in terms of his disagreement with the lyrical content, that would be expected since the Republicans (ie Bob Dole, Bill Bennet, Bill O'Reilly) always take issue with rap music, especially when it is election time. Whether he will remains to be seen.

For more information on music censorship:
Hip Hop City

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