Make no question about it; New York’s rap scene has been pretty much non-existent to some degree with several rappers taking a liking to southern trap beats and, in the process, have lost their identities when creating their own music. Veteran artists are attempting to keep that afloat, and with an exception of a couple of new rappers (like Action Bronson, Bodega Bamz, Troy Ave, to name a few), the new wave of artists from the Big Apple has sounded like carbon copies of something you’d hear down south. The result, well, we’re hearing more south music in the tri-state than our own. First, it was Kendrick Lamar who caught flack for his lines on “Control,” and now the internet is in frenzy after Atlanta native Trinidad James boldly declared that Atlanta runs New York music. Over the course of the past few days, everyone from rappers, to radio personalities and bloggers has all chimed in with their two cents regarding the matter. XXL caught up with regular fans and taste-makers at an Ty Dolla Sign and Vic Mensa show in Brooklyn last night, (after the cut) and asked whether or not they agree with Trinidad Jame$’ comments, what their thoughts on the current state of NY Hip Hop is, and which NY rappers are they bumping in their iPods (You can find Maino’s rebuttal down below as previously heard on Hot 97).
Audio via RealTalkNY
In turn, Trinidad leaked this song “L.I.A.A.R.S” sending shots to Rosenberg and Charlamagne:
Troy Ave tells Vibe:
If he was talking about “runs” in terms of Atlanta rap getting constant radio play and being heavy in New York clubs, then he’s got a valid point. A real nigga like myself, I’m gonna deal with facts. I’m not upset about that, but all I want to do is restore the feeling in this city. That’s why I named my album New York City. At a time, the Death Row and West Coast could have said they run rap, and they did! Until Biggie came out, and then Bad Boy was like, ‘Ok, we run rap now.’ There was a time when T-Pain was the only thing that you would hear on the radio, and then the whole group of Florida rappers had it on lock. But, Atlanta niggas been had it for a minute in terms of getting played everywhere.
“(The New York hip-hop scene) is not bad. There’s a lot of rappers, mostly in the underground, so people don’t know too much about it. So if someone says they’re the king of New York, like Kendrick did — well, Kendrick’s from the underground so he might feel like he’s boosted his ego to the point where he thinks he’s king of anything — but New York just needs to put on for its own more. (I like) Domo Briggs. Science. Isaiah The Third. Chris Casanova. There’s a group called Genius Sounds Family, they’re good too.” – Isaiah Thomas, 21, New York
“Honestly, from my point of view, it’s fallen a lot. I don’t know, it’s just fallen. The West has been coming up and everything in the Midwest has been crazy lately. I don’t know what to do with the East, New York especially. I like Fab. There should be more Fab out. There should be a lot more Fab on the radio but they don’t do that. Method Man, they put him on the radio every now and then, but it’s really nothing.” – Mike, 21, Staten Island
“It’s kinda different now ’cause there’s not as many New York artists out as much. The ones I consider there now are Joey Badass and the Pro Era crew. They’re the one I follow now… New York ain’t really popping no more. It’s more about the West Coast with Kendrick Lamar and the whole West Coast crew, they’re taking over. Same with the down South rappers as well. New York isn’t rising up no more. It’s just at a medium level.” – Chris, 19, Brooklyn
“I’m not gonna lie, right now the South is making noise but for the wrong reasons. The beats carry the track; it’s not lyrical. That’s something we (New York) are always gonna have on deck. It’ll eventually come back—it’s the birthplace of hip-hop. I’m not worried at all. (I listen to) Fab, French. It’s sad cause the sh*t we listen to right now is South and West Coast sh*t, like Ty Dolla Sign. But hopefully we can break it back.” – Winkyn Paulino, Harlem
“New York hip-hop. Identity crisis. I think some of these rappers are scared to use New york producers. It’s not one full answer, it’s many answers, but I think, in my opinion, that’s part of the problem. Try to find a identity. What Trinidad James said last night, I agree. You listen to radio, a lot of people blame the radio, but I blame the artist for not putting out records. And I don’t mean blog records. I don’t mean Soundcloud records… It’s just like the NBA and college. You come out and jump in the league, but average 7.5 points. You’re not really fulfilling your potential. But I think once we power through that, New York hip-hop will be better.” – A.King, 30, Brooklyn, The Combat Jack Show
“I think New York hip-hop needs to step their shit up. That’s my opinion. Artists from Atlanta, Chicago are on the come up and that’s where the attention is going towards. So I definitely feel like New York hip-hop needs to step their shit up.” – Jada Haitoff, 22, Manhattan
It’s kinda dead, but Joell Ortiz is doing Slaughterhouse. Everyone else is just releasing mixtapes, they’re not out there. I kinda like the older guys better. These guys will just say anything in their raps. – Tyree, 19, Brooklyn
“Everybody get their shine. The west had it with Death Row, New York had it with Bad Boy, South have had it for a long time now, but I feel like it’ll make its way back sooner than later to New York.” – Gino Brown, Harlem
“Everybody knows that it’s not the same anymore. I’m from the outside so it’s just my perspective, but everyone from my generation grew up on New York hip-hop like Nas and Biggie and all the big dogs. It’s different. It definitely has a more Southern vibe today, but I’m feeling it. I’m still a hip-hop fan… There’s not any (New York MCs) that are killing it. I love the A$AP crew. They’re legit. Otherwise there aren’t a lot of people that stick out for me personally.” – Justin, 25, Tampa Bay