This track from Stig arrived in my email inbox from a promotions company with the attached message:
I Got Game [CLEAN EDIT] - PLEASE DO NOT BLOG OR BOOTLEG - SUPPORT THE ARTIST and LABEL.
So, if you're really down with hiphop, skip this post or buy the track on itunes and just read the text from this post while listening to your purchased version in your favourite (AppleTM) media player. That's real hiphop love fam...
...or is it? No, it is not. Now, I've met Stig a few times and we have mutual friends in Newcastle so I want to support him as an artist. I know he's got crazy rhyming ability and, in a battle, he will eat you alive (pun intended)!
However, if I'd bought this track without hearing it (like most of my record collection), I'd be whinging about the lack of depth to the production; the predictable subject matter; the lack of battle adrenalin and the general lack of originality I feel this track suffers from. But, as I received this track free to my email, I want to blog it and raise awareness of it in support of a rapper I want to see do well. I mean, it's a decent track. Good lyrics and delivery; tight concept; querky production but enough headnod to get keep you in the groove etc etc etc - the medium is the massage as Marshall McLuhan once banged on about confusingly
See, the nature by which we acquire music and the contract we enter into when purchasing it has been too long abused by record industry executives, managers, promoters, publicists and artists (through their collusion) for anyone to trust a product based solely on its PR.
Supporting artists and supporting labels are not the same thing. Denying public access and trialing of an experiential product such as music cannot be seen as supporting artists. raising public awareness; facilitating healthy debate, constructive critique and honest reviewing may lead to an informed investment in support of an artists creative endeavours.
This public relationship between artist and audience prior to investment could force the hand of the record companies to do the job they have been shirking for too long - to source, develop, produce and release the best music being made. This would hopefully give artists the motivation to lay off on the Autotune and stripper raps and put some creativity into their work. This approach aims at sustaining artists longevity, for your future enjoyment and subsequent re-investment, as well as reinvigorating the development of new talent. To me, that seems more supportive than the average promotions company approach of trying to get as many people to buy one piece of well-marketed shit before everyone buys another piece of equally well-marketed shit instead. We have been there, the only difference is that you don't have to traipse around Soho (or wherever) in the rain to do it. This second approach can only serve the interests of the promotions company eager to secure future trade by wowing label owners and execs with impressive sales figures for their roster of artists with little regard for the sustenance of those artists or their careers after the campaign has ended.