I’m worried about JPEGMAFIA. Not as a person but more as a concept. See, I’ve spent the last 2 years obsessing on the Black Ben Carson album, almost exclusively. His beats are terrifyingly delicious with almost never a single one of them achieving “banger” status. That would be too cute. No, his sound is one of political and social homicide, with techno kick drums that devour 808’s with distorted resonance, with even bigger promises than that of Bernie Sanders in both the horrifically ambient intros and outros, to single handedly promising to be the pied piper that leads hip hop out of the Drake era.
The level of shit talking Peggy achieves on this album is unrivaled in any genre and any medium and even by other JPEGMAFIA albums EP’s or singles. Some have come close or even peaked somewhere near the same point but using his latest and most widely ingested release as an example, the first 4 tracks are straight throwaways that would’ve been better served being used hidden tracks or some other gimmick that allows the listener to focus on a message that seems to be contradicting what both he and critics claim is the meat of the substance of its context.
See for these past two years, I’ve been mesmerized by the voracious vulgarity of both what his underlying meaning is expressing to his listeners and who it’s truly directed at. And while Veteran was released in early 2018, I feel a mysterious momentum that first became apparent to me not more than 60 days ago when a slightly more accessible DGAF compatriot of rap announced JPEGMAFIA as his main support on a tour that wrapped up with the gig at the Novo I attended a couple weekends ago.
Vince Staples and his PR team created marketing that seemed to insure JPEGMAFIA’s name would be mentioned anytime the tour was discussed and now I’m hearing the likes of KCRW play the well timed release of new Peggy track “The Who” on Morning Becomes Eclectic, of all places with iHeartComix serving as official destination of the stream that hosts “The Who”. This is where the details of these last two months of ascension have become confusing and frankly maybe even a bit disturbing.
I spend entirely too much time thinking about what a musician/artist is thinking about during one of their sets when I go see them live. Well, my mind was on overdrive, arguing with JPEGMAFIA well before dude even took the stage to open for Vince Staples at the Novo Saturday night, the weekend before last. I’m ready to put him on blast. Not because he’s one of my least favorite MC’s in rap but because he is hands down my favorite. And also because he spends so much time talking shit about, well about EVERYTHING and in particular, the music blogger, seemingly the only thing in this country that’s more shameful to admit being than a liberal.
From the outside looking in, it’s easy to see how ridiculous we (liberals/progressives) are with our SJW mentality and online lynchings of the straight white male, decimating everything that’s not. It’s often a white on white crime, bashing any other type of rhetoric unless it intersects with our white guilt and/or privilege, which Rap music doesn’t. It’s been given a pass and that’s a good thing. Sexism, homophobia and all other language censored by the liberati is alive and well in rap and that’s a good thing, only in the sense that it still exists in the world at large and we can’t afford to pretend it doesn’t. When we do and weaponize our outrage and shame by dismantling the life of its purveyors, it gives rise to unite the bigots, even spreading hate to moderate bigots and the children of both overt and moderate haters. It swells the numbers of a demographic that seemed to be slowly dying out and President Donald Trump is just one of the many outcomes. Peggy holds up a mirror to all this behavior and forces accountability where none has any desire to exist. If you value self knowledge, digesting his take is unavoidable. If you don’t, well maybe JPEGMAFIA isn’t the rapper for you.
The problem is that all this isn’t overt and obvious in any way. In a recent interview with Pitchfork, a frequent target for his point blank assassination attempts, JPEGMAFIA and the interviewer speak about Peggy’s lyrics as if it’s main target were actually socially conservative culture in a manner that makes me feel like I’m experiencing the Mandela Effect. And as humorous and tongue and cheek as I WANT this to come off, the truth is that JPEGMAFIA fits the profile of the MANY examples of times when the CIA infiltrated our entertainment industry and entertainers. Boom!
In that same interview with pitchfork, JPEGMAFIA states very clearly that him making money as a rapper is paramount. So? You say… a rapper talking about making money isn’t exactly a news flash, true. But if that was always the main goal of his rap career then I would say that he might be the most confident and Visionary rapper… well, ever! How could Peggy record those tracks, set fire to his target audience and do it in a manner that is so razor focused on a message that verbally abuses the very same people that are supposed to make him wealthy and commit to this strategy so relentlessly that pro gun, anti same sex marriage 2007 Hillary Clinton would be impressed if these worthless bloggers interviewing you for pitchfork weren’t so singularly focused on being an extension of your PR team that they actually noticed how many times you mentioned murdering them, as well as Jews, white people, mixed race, liberal arts degree holders, Death Grips, Drake as well as beating females before you murder them. LOLOLOLOLOL.
But seriously, how could this motherfucker NOT be in the CIA? Now, you might think that I mention all of this because I hold some kind of moral issue with his “message“ on the left right now. I’m just confused. And maybe jealous.
How is it that the minute I make mention and point out the facts that it was the CIA claiming with no evidence that Donald Trump‘s campaign colluded with Russia and hackers to win the election and simply asked people, my supposed political comrades to remember or research The last few times the CIA chimed in about anything- before I finished the sentence, I had these disassociated nimrods give me the look that I see so many give that little red MAGA hat ( ͡° ͜ʖ ͡°) How is it that I sit on the brink of social media exile for putting history in context and young Peg Lord isn’t considered “THE BAD MAN, THE BAD MAN”?
Fact- Managers, music critics and publicists are the new king makers in music. He’s their worst nightmare. #metoo will crush you quicker with the left than a bro with a beer can. Now, he DID just “Killed a Cop Now He’s Horny” so that should earn him some points but consider the profile of a CIA spook. Ex Military. Supposedly vocal up the chain of command with his CO’s. Cut his teeth in the Baltimore scene but from Brooklyn, now living in LA? Roots that didn’t go too deep in any one place. Not even my evidence against Lil B being a spook was so extensive!
Words by: Danny Baraz
Photos by: Rodney Campos