Product of a Black Dream

“Today a generation raised in the shadows of the cold war assumes new responsibilities in a world warmed by the sunshine of freedom”

This post is a post I’ve been talking about on social networks for a while now, not because there’s anything ground breaking about it but merely because of the side thought it carries, how priceless being from the hood/township is… literally, you don’t have to have much to be here, to be part of the family. Yes we all dream of someday moving somewhere a little quiet, where the crime rate isn’t as bad though we could never turn our backs on the very banks, no, grounds we were built on, the energy here is priceless… after so many years, from when there were just power failures to this load shedding epidemic, when the power goes out, just to come back on, all the neighbours cheer in unison, the energy here is always alive. So the post begins.

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When we were children we’d play out in the street just dipped in fate, when we were children we’d say that we don’t know the meaning of fear, oh dear, too deep, please stop thinking, I’m just a black sheep good for any wool, food for any fool, a product of my own vision, my own mission, my own dreams.

Rich people are the buying market for gangsta rap, at least that’s how I see it, mostly because I’ve always used music as an escape from reality. When gangsterism, guns and violence is something you get to witness every other day, you become somewhat scared of that culture, artistic or otherwise, it’s not like you can tell the difference when you’re just a kid. Growing up playing outside with friends struggling to ignore the presence of an ambulance from across the neighbourhood, the silent screams within the deep thoughts of our young minds of what had happened for the ambulance to be there and how it was becoming a visual ambiance of another life viciously forced to hang by a thread or not to hang at all. Feeling safe in your own home was becoming more of a challenge, listening to what may be a reminder of what was happening outside the window and what had happened inside the window was sometimes the deal but never ideal.

I know it probably seems like I’m writing all this just because I think it will make sense, it doesn’t have to make sense. I can very easily prove my theory true by simply bringing in a very popular band. Big Nuz are a kwaito hip hop group from Durban, okay, maybe I’m not sure what they categorize their music as, but what I can say about their work is that as much as I’ve crucified them for their songs being monotonous, and how they’re always “Happy” or on that party mode, I don’t blame them, they use their music to escape the demons they may have had to face growing up. I wont shy away from sharing that I think flashy artists are flashy to escape or overcompensate for what they could only yearn for growing up.

“As kids we didn’t complain about being poor; we talked about how rich we were going to be and made moves to get the lifestyle we aspired to by any means we could and as soon as we had a little money, we were eager to show it.”- Jay Z

Growing up in the township, you have good days and bad days like any other kid growing up anywhere else in the world, but what we don’t have aside from tangible luxuries are successful academics, and without that, it’s hard to get a full view, a full picture of how far one can go… getting paper the right way.

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“Hip Hop is more about attaining wealth. People respect success. They respect big. They don’t even have to like your music. If you’re big enough, people are drawn to you”- Jay Z

Product of a black dream we scream, NO, we’re breaking the silence cos we’ve been laying low too long, done laying low we jump so high we touch the ground, grounded, steady, you break away from being yet another boring brick, another brown brick on the wall, another frown freak to control, sleep becomes an enemy, sleep still a necessity cos if you don’t sleep, in truth, you’ll never wake up, wake up product of a black dream, that life was only a dream, they say when a dream is broken, the mind must be woken, woken, alive, we live with endless possibilities.

 

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About Ndumiso Mncwabe

When beautiful melodies tell us horrible things and grisly sounds tell us the kind truth. This is where life and music meet. They say music has the power to inspire change, I say music has the power to inspire vibes. Good vibes and bad vibes. It also has the power to inspire thoughts, but most importantly, for it to inspire change, it must inspire conversation. I smell music, I speak music. View all posts by Ndumiso Mncwabe

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