Common Goes Where Hip Hop Hasn’t

Dan Leroy of the Cleveland Scene spoke with who since at least 1994 lamented hip-hop’s focus on glitz, guns, and gangstas — when he came out with ‘I Used to Love H.E.R.’, an anthem for anti-blingers. Common says his current experimentation has been sparked by those same concerns, but he adds, “Sometimes I really enjoy hip-hop. Hip-hop ain’t necessarily gonna grow in the way I would like, but my way ain’t necessarily the right way.” Still, there’s no hiding the pride when he states that “on this album, I dwelled in places I don’t think hip-hop has been, nor black music.”

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