Raindrop, Droptop, it’s Time to put Trap on the Chop Block
Weak lyrics, a booming beat, and an illiterate rapper. Mix it all together and what do you get? The hottest thing to be dumped out of the music industry right now. Trap music. Trap music, for the blissfully unaware, is a type of rap where rappers sacrifice meaningful lyrics for a catchy hook or a bass-boosted beat. It is a type of rap where serious issues like drugs, gang violence, and promiscuity are glorified. It is a type of rap that needs its spotlight beam averted to somewhere else worthwhile.
This came to mind after I had the pleasure of putting my ears through the agony of hearing the song “Bad and Boujee” by Migos for the millionth or so time. After enduring all that racket, I decided to delve into the lyrics of the song, wondering why it had gained an immense popularity over the past few weeks despite the repetitive and headache-inducing nature of the combination of the three half-witted rappers. ‘Delve’ is an extreme overstatement. The lyrics are just about as deep as the shallow end of a pool made for toddlers. No diving! Seriously, it’s that bad. The song itself has no positive values, no storytelling, and no redeeming qualities. The only thing the Atlanta rappers prove in this song is that they know how to rhyme. But even my 5-year-old niece could rhyme ‘cat’ and ‘hat’ if she really wanted to. But to be fair, you have to give them props for rhyming ‘Rattatouie’ and ‘Boobie’, whatever that context may be.
In all seriousness, the song is the epitome of trap music: an overpowering beat in addition to a series of mumbling and bumbling rappers who like to rap about selling and using drugs whilst painting a misogynistic picture of women (who are hardly ever referred to as “women,” but for the decency of this article, will be). The fact that this is considered mainstream music is a tragedy.
Then you have to ask why. Why is this mainstream? What is it about trap that makes it so popular? Is it the rush of the privileged rich kids pretending they’re living a life of struggle and danger because they feel a need to rebel? Is it the result of masses hopping onto a mediocre, at best, bandwagon to fit in?
It seems that people nowadays are getting dumber. Music is no longer for intellectuals, and unfortunately, the nonintellectuals make up an enormous chunk of the population of music-heads. Rap songs are no longer about the in-depth lyrics or the stories behind them. With trap, lyrics are only there to add to the background noise of the song. The lyrics don’t actually mean anything. People aren’t listening to what they’re saying, they just want to dance, which is good for trap artists because no one can actually understand what they’re saying. Take the song “Panda” by rapper Desiigner for example: the webpage that features the lyrics for the song received the most views for that website last year with an impressive 4.5 million views, more than any other song in 2016. However, this is not because people liked the tune that much, it’s because they have no idea what he’s saying after he mumbles ‘Panda Panda Panda Panda Panda’ in the infamous hook that took him to the top of 2016. It’s also no surprise this song is also on the subject of drugs and violence.
This lack of consciousness in song lyrics is what is leading to the decline of rap and music as a whole. These low-standard, low-brow, and sometimes ludicrous lyrics is not what rap should be about. Rap should be poetic, using intricate and imaginative lyrics to tell stories of making it big through the rap game, and leaving behind the bad lifestyles artists were once accustomed to. Instead, these trap ‘artists’ trivialize the issues of drugs in society, and glorify the negative lifestyle that comes with it, spitting on the cultural significance rap used to possess.
What can we do to stop this? Easy. Stop paying attention to these faux-artists, and more importantly, stop giving them your money. It’s time that trap is flushed from the toilet bowl that is the music industry.