Joey Baddass is joining the podcast game.
Recently, the B4.Da.$$ rapper revealed he’s starting a podcast called ’47 Minutes’, to premier on Tidal later this year. Per his Twitter, he says his focus will be to “talk about shit from hip hop, politics, spirituality and whatever the fuck else I want.”
In the past, the two worlds of music artist and journalist, while close, never blurred. You had your rare occasions — like when legendary radio personality Angie Martinez dropped a single or two in the nineties — but she was an exception, not the rule.
These days to be a “critic” all you need is a mic and running internet. Being that R&B/hip-hop was last year’s biggest genre (accounting for 24.5 percent of all music consumed), it seems like the perfect time for rappers to become commentators in today’s space.
Even still, I had to get used to seeing artists on the other side of the interview. Separating rappers from their artist persona didn’t really click until I realized it’s what goes on in the sports industry. Retired pro ball players often become commentators, announcers, and even game callers, as their insight proves valuable. It works.
Badass is just one of many rappers that have recently entered media in one way or another.
Nas was one of the first to cross over into the media side of hip-hop. In 2003, The Queens-born rapper invested a “six-figure” sum in the publication Mass Appeal, making himself Associate Publisher. He told Forbes at the time that he thought he “could add value across the board.”
In 2011, Snoop Dogg felt that he had a perspective to give, launching his own television program called GGN: Snoop Dogg’s Double G News Network. From Seth Rogan to musicians like Miguel, Snoop conducts interview and produces content himself.
And Snoop loves the journalism game so much that last year he added nighttime talkshow host to his resume when he premiered as a co-host (with Martha Stewart) on VH1’s Martha & Snoop’s Potluck Dinner Party.
The same goes for Bow Wow who was served as host for BET’s 106 and Park and Diddy who created his own television station, Revolt TV — rappers are finding that they have something to contribute to the conversation and industry outside of their artistry.
Joe Budden’s 2017 probably took the rapper/journalist relationship to new heights during his brief stint at Complex’s Everyday Struggle.
The now retired rapper, who is a member of Slaughter Gang and who was formally employed by Atlantic, constantly got into feuds and tiffs with artists simply because of his brash no-nonsense approach. Being that Joe is a rapper and not your traditional journalist, the show was unique and successful.
Even before Everyday Struggle, Joe Budden had a docu-series on YouTube and was probably one of the first to break into podcasts when he premiered with his own podcast (‘The Joe Budden Podcast’).
Since then, other rappers and even producers, have followed Budden and crossed over into the podcast field as well.
Legendary Queens rapper N.O.R.E. (of Capone-N-Noreaga) and Miami hip-hop pioneer DJ EFN have one of the highest rated podcasts under the CBS umbrella called Drink Champs where N.O.R.E. gets his rapper friends drunk to talk shit.
Rick Rubin, arguably one of the most influential producers of all-time, started a podcast with author Malcolm Gladwell (10,000 hour rule) called the ‘Broken Record podcast’ in 2017, where guests like Eminem, who never gives interviews, stop by to chop it up.
Rappers have the access, knowledge, and insight to be great music journalists, and the growing medium is bound to attract others, like Badass, to the table to give their take.
As much as I like rappers rapping, having an open mind to the kind of platform they can bring and how said platform can elevate the genre is interesting enough to make me tune in.