Hip-Hop's Sisters

Not talking about the rap group though

I have been thinking about how hip-hop tends to relate to women this entire woman's history month. I felt that the biggest conclusion I made this month is that hip-hop tends to approach women who aren't mothers as possible romantic partners. I then thought about a Charles Hamilton line "A woman you don't look at with a lustful eye but a trustful eye",  I would think that a sister would perfectly fit this need in the rappers life. So I decided to look at two songs that mentions the relationship between a rapper and his sister and see what hip-hop says to their sisters. I want to look at Kendrick Lamars' Keisha's Song and Rhymefest's Sister speaking about or to their sisters in different ways.

Kendericks song is a rather odd choice to invesitgate brother sister relationships. However as the song concludes "My little sister eleven, I looked her right in the face,The day that I wrote this song, set her down and pressed play". Which indicates that this one of the types of songs he hopes to make an impact on his sister , and that the point of the songs is something he wants his sister to get and walk away with to remember. Its pretty interesting  and cool that we have here an older brother trying to teach his sister a life lesson. What is the lesson he wants to communicate though?

Keisha's song follows the life of a prostitute at the age of seventeen. Kenderick mentions having sex to give money for  her pimp who she perceives as a father. Highlighting that the most important male figure in her life is one who uses her for his own financial gain.  He follows up the second verse with mentioning the destruction of her temple and even using it to persuade other male authority figures(in this case police) to ignore  how she is exploiting herself.  The third verse concludes with her questioning is she can escape how she is bounded by sex , she thinks the idea is silly. Kendrick then reveals that the prostitutes' mother allowed her boy friend to molest her.

It is clear that the primary reason that Kendrick lets his sister listen to this is that he is afraid she could become like her. However the interesting thing to take into consideration is that throughout the song we saw an absence or perversion o of male figures throughout the prostitute's life. Having Kendrick clearly take an interest and hope she doesn't become like that shows that she already has a dependable male support group. Throughout we have failure of male figures in the woman's life.  Which makes me wonder, why play this for your sister in this song. Why play it for the victim? It seems like the men are at more fault. Maybe he should have played it for his little brother.

Rhymefest's Sister is more of an appropriate song  by which we could look at the relationship between sisters and brothers. Albeit it the term sister was used loosely for the first verse. The second verse is clearly more towards his sister. However like Kendrick's song we have an issue here talking about issues of sex but it takes it further and talks about issues of motherhood.

The first verse has Ryhmefest speaking to a woman he clearly had romantic interest in but she broke down to him and started talking about her issues. She mentioned issues about being pregnant and not knowing who the father is and her mom being a widow before she was born. Its rather interesting that both artists already seem to recognize the lack of a father figure being somewhat responsible for the pain in the woman life.

The second verse deals with Ryhmefest talking about his sister being addicted to drugs. He ended up bearing the responsibility and taking in her children. The child asks a tough question about his mother loving drugs over him. Ryhmefests' response? Beginning to cry. Its clear that he is heart broken about who his sister has become.  I think this  makes the song more interesting as I mentioned about Kendrick's Keisha's song it seems although unintentionally he ended up making a song which should be given to men as they are to blame for who the woman in their lives become. However here we have that even with a brother who is clearly involved in the sisters life that the woman can still become tough and head down hard life roads.  Unlike where I felt that Kendrick almost did a blame the victim move Ryhmefest clearly just realizes that the issues about his relationship with his sister to be more complex.

It seems that these both songs concerning sisters,show that rappers care and are concerned for the sisters  based on the types of mothers they may become as well as worrying that they become prostitutes, or pretty much abuse sex in anyway. It seems appropriate that while rappers look as women who aren't mothers as possible romantic partners that they themselves are worried about the type of romantic partners and mothers their sisters could become.
Shout outs:Ms.Arce
Peace, Love, Unity, God Bless and Keep Safe

This entry was posted on Friday, March 30, 2012 and is filed under ,. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response.

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