Rhymefest Talks Hip-Hop with Tory Party Leader

Chicago

lyricist Rhymefest found common ground Thursday (Oct. 19) while acting as a goodwill

Hip-Hop ambassador during his overseas visit with Tory Party leader David Cameron.In

addition to discussing Cameron’s concerns over violent rap lyrics, the London

Metro Times reports that Rhymefest treated the British politician to a performance

in his House of Commons office and even invited him to venture with him to a nightclub.Although

the pair was in unison about not banning Hip-Hop, they also felt that rappers

have a responsibility to portray the positive side of life in their music."David

told me what his issues were and I told him what my issues were with what could

be perceived in what he was saying and we came to what I believe was an understanding,"

said the Grammy-winning rapper, who made no apology for using violent imagery

in his lyrics to reflect the reality of Chicago street life. Instead,

he encouraged leaders to concentrate on beating poverty rather than criticize

musicians. "Politicians,

if they don’t like what we are saying, then have policy that uproots the disease

of poverty instead of policy that promotes poverty and makes the rich richer.

If you have policy that kills the disease of poverty, then you can kill the symptom

of negative rap.""Rap

music comes from urban rebellion," Rhymefest continued as he voiced his opposition

to those urging MCs to tone down their lyrics. "What we doing comes from

our frustration. Why do we got to change? Why can’t the things that cause us to

yell out and cry for help change?"Thursday’s

meeting came as a result of a recent request from Rhymefest to meet Cameron "over

a cup of tea" after hearing the politician’s criticism of DJs for playing

violent songs.The

get-together proved to be productive as the duo addressed Cameron’s proposals

for a "music for good" initiative to use the power of music to raise

funds for positive projects, such as community radio stations, around the country.The

leader called the meeting "very positive" while harping on the fact

that artists, radio stations and the music industry have a responsibility and

opportunity to act as positive role models for young people. In

addition, Cameron voiced his desire to celebrate and promote the positivity that

music does, as well as take a stand against the negative."I

had a very positive meeting with Rhymefest and Sony BMG today and I am keen to

work with them in developing the idea of a project which harnesses the tremendous

cultural power of artists and the music industry to support community radio and

local music projects around the country," said Cameron.As

for the politician taking Rhymefest up on his offer to go clubbing, the Metro

Times stated that Cameron declined due to his busy schedule.

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