photo via Heightline

Joe Budden On The Voice of Hip-Hop Culture

“Bridging a gap between the “Yung Lil’s” to the older OG’s”

Since the beginning of sports, there have been professionals critiquing every move of athletes whether during their performance or in their everyday life. Skip Bayless and Stephen A. Smith are two of the most known personalities in sports television today; bringing captivating yet unusual enthusiasm and unswayed passionate opinions to the world of sports. While the music industry has always had a platform to showcase itself, it wouldn’t be until recently that a show formulated in the likeness of a First Take or ESPN would appear.

The first show to mirror the sports industry setup would be Complex’s Everyday Struggle. The show premiered with its original cast, including former rapper artist Joe Budden, video game and urban media enthusiast DJ Akademiks, and Complex’s own news media personnel Nadeska Alexis, in April of 2017. The show kicked off with flying colors as the intense conversations, often turned to arguments, between Budden and Akademiks drew viewers in by the thousands, sometimes millions. The show didn’t sway from the tough topics and welcomed artists who had issues with the cast to come speak their peace, making for quite interesting episodes.

Despite the success of Complex’s original series, Budden would not last a year prior to the birth of the show. Deciding to exit in December of the same year (2017), it was clear that Budden had something new brewing post Everyday Struggle, especially considering his expertise in the industry and charismatic personality carried the show in its startup.

Regardless of Budden leaving Everyday Struggle rather spontaneously, fans along with hip-hop connoisseurs could see that Budden was revamping himself, pouring into multiple mediums of hip-hop news, including his self-titled podcast, that could redirect his past rap career and transcend into something new and innovative. Budden was opening a new avenue in the media industry, he was becoming the face of hip-hop analysis.

Less than a year after leaving Everyday Struggle, Budden has pioneered a new youtube show titled “State of the Culture”, this time on Revolt TV. Kicking off on September 10th, Budden is now on to his sixth episode with fellow rap artist Remy Ma, radio personality Scottie Beam, and Brandon “Jinx” Jenkins who also took the leap from Complex.

The weekly episodes hosted by Budden have allowed him to be more comfortable than before, with obvious nods to his respected panel. Budden has been able to settle his blood pressure and still hit on the topics that matter not only in hip-hop but also to the culture that directly effects himself and distinguished guests. He has become more level-headed in his approach and able to rely on his panel to bring forth similar concerns of his own. Budden is confident in allowing the panel to be the voice of reason, opposition, and understanding, and seems thankful that he no longer has to wear every hat.

While fans still want music from Budden, especially after being dissed by Eminem, he has made it clear he is retired. Luckily he is still able to have a voice, a voice that is important to hip-hop culture, a voice that is doing just want is stated in the shows opening introduction; “bridging a gap between the “Yung Lil’s” to the older OG’s”.

While there is plenty of room for more shows like this to pop up, it is rightful to give Budden the honor of making a show like this possible and popular, providing a new outlet that isn’t just reporting, but also opinionated, entertaining, truthful, and subjective.

Anna Tsiaras

Anna is a graduate from Rutgers University where she received her B.A. in journalism. Follow her on Twitter @annatsiaras.Twitter

October 17, 2018

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