Le1f Responds To Lord Jamar's Controversial New Yorker Profile
Le1f has penned a response to polarizing remarks from Lord Jamar that were published in a recent New Yorker profile spotlighting the MC’s return to the fore as a self-professed “hip-hop conservative.” While he considers himself a conservationist concerned with preserving the old norms of the culture, Lord Jamar’s commentary has instead positioned him as more of a mouthpiece for homophobia and racial “purity” in hip-hop, whose troll-friendly agenda is promoted by VladTV; the web outlet has reportedly turned a decent profit pushing out the former Brand Nubian MC’s incendiary remarks, amongst other things. Lord Jamar blames artists like Le1f and Kanye West for watering down the genre with attire and approaches to the music that he feels run counter to the genre’s old-school machismo aesthetic. Lord Jamar served up a less than positive response to Le1f’s recent performance on the Late Show with David Letterman after being baited on Twitter:
— Lord Jamar (@lordjamar) March 15, 2014
Though his commentary is offensive to some, Lord Jamar’s sentiments are shared by many of his fans and social media followers concerned with the visible and much more experimental shift in hip-hop culture. While Kanye West has yet to respond to Lord Jamar’s criticisms, Le1f wrote an open letter to the MC and published it on his Facebook page:
dear Lord Jamar,
Choose your battles. If the whitening of rap is a concern to you, please leave my name out of it. If you think being gay is the same as being white, you are as ignorant as your enemies. I’m darker than you. I’m african. I’m a black man and I experience all the same racism you do, if not more, on top of homophobia, including from black men just like you. Are you proud of being a hateful member of a majority? Rap started out as a creative response to oppression, and no matter my outfit, I know oppressions you will never understand.
The decidedly gracious response is the latest win for the rising New York MC who – despite one very vocal detractor – has no stated plans to get out of the game. Though some may question his place in hip-hop, Le1f’s presence alone is a coup for those who have long been decried by individuals at the helm of movement even as they support and search for a place within the genre. Grab Le1f’s Hey EP via iTunes. Read the full profile on Lord Jamar at newyorker.com.