Tuesday, 16 May 2017
GOOD VIBRATIONS PODCAST, VOL. 106: LENON HONOR/ BEYOND GANGSTER BLACKFACE
Lenon Honor is a researcher, musician, counsellor, public speaker and film-maker who returns to Good Vibrations for his third appearance.
Lenon has just released his ground-breaking new documentary ‘Beyond Gangster Blackface: A Critical Analysis of Gangster Rap’ which has been two years in the making. The film looks at how the genre of hip-hop known as ‘gangsta rap’ - and the output of the group NWA in particular - affected an entire generation’s attitudes and perceptions of black people and their lifestyles. Lenon’s statistical analysis of the main themes addressed in NWA’s lyrics throws up some shocking results. The film goes a lot further than just the hip-hop element, however, its 12 interviewees delving into issues such as social-engineering and the targeted destruction of the family dynamic, male-female relationships, and historical stereotypes of African-Americans.
Along the way the conversation encompasses such subjects as the East Coast/ West Coast beef in hip-hop, ‘diss’ records, self-aggrandisement, police brutality, the historical tradition of ‘playing the dozens’, and the legacy left by the Blaxploitation movies of the early 1970s.