Wednesday, November 23, 2022
HomeMusicTakeoff leaves an unparalleled legacy in hip-hop : NPR

Takeoff leaves an unparalleled legacy in hip-hop : NPR

Following the loss of life of hip-hop artist Takeoff, a member of the group Migos, NPR’s Ayesha Rascoe talks with host of Rap Radar, Elliott Wilson about his legacy and what his loss of life means for the style.


Hip-hop has suffered one other large loss.


MIGOS: (Rapping) Versace, Versace, Medusa head on me like I am ‘Luminati. I do know that you simply prefer it, Versace, my neck and my wrist is so sloppy.

RASCOE: Takeoff, who was a part of the Atlanta-based, Grammy-nominated group Migos, was fatally shot at a bowling alley in Houston this previous week. He was 28. To speak about who he was as an artist and what his loss of life means for music, we’re joined now by Elliott Wilson. He is the chief content material officer at Tidal and the host of “Rap Radar.” Thanks a lot for becoming a member of us.

ELLIOTT WILSON: Thanks, Ayesha. Thanks for having me.

RASCOE: Takeoff, he was solely 28 years outdated. And so the tragedy right here is simply immeasurable.

WILSON: Oh, it is monumental. I believe we’re all nonetheless stinging and nonetheless in ache proper now. I imply, I’ve had the pleasure of interviewing Takeoff, alongside along with his members in Migos, you recognize, all through their rise within the 2010s. And, you recognize, anyone that met Takeoff understood that this man was such a great man, such cool vitality. To assume some hurt would come his manner on this kind of heinous manner, it was unimaginable. He is a part of the Migos, man. The Migos is among the biggest teams in hip-hop historical past. You realize, they set the usual within the modern-day. He is a Corridor of Famer.

RASCOE: Speak to us about that as a result of if you say that they are one of many biggest hip-hop teams of all time and the way they set the usual, discuss us via perhaps even only a music that actually demonstrated their type and the way they set an ordinary.

WILSON: Properly, I believe from the start, they got here with a distinct sound, and we did not actually even absolutely grasp “Hannah Montana,” “Versace.” You realize, it is prefer it was this kind of repetitive, sort of uneven romp type and mumble rap.


MIGOS: (Rapping) Versace, Versace, Versace, Versace, Versace, Versace, Versace, Versace.

WILSON: An entire new sound, completely different cadences, simply completely different patterns. Like, you possibly can really feel the affect from perhaps, you recognize, Memphis hip-hop with Three 6 Mafia parts, Bone Thugs parts of it. The factor that actually stands out to me is that we’re in an age now the place a gaggle may be very uncommon. You realize, quite a lot of artists are particular person acts, proper? We promote individuality on this world proper now, proper? However the energy of unity, the facility of that brotherhood, though these gents had been associated by, like, uncle to nephew and cousins, they transfer like brothers to me. There is a brotherhood. You hear it within the music and them enjoying backwards and forwards off one another with completely different rhymes and cadences and completely different rhythms. And I hope that that is their affect, that Takeoff can affect artists to band along with different artists, their brothers, and make nice music as a result of that is what he did along with his brothers, you recognize?

RASCOE: I acquired to ask you since you’ve been chronicling hip-hop for a really very long time, these types of killings on the peak of an artist’s success – I bear in mind, you recognize, Tupac and Biggie. I imply, I cried for days when Tupac died, proper? A loss of life like this, what does it do to hip-hop as a style?

WILSON: Yeah. Sadly, loss of life has been a serious a part of hip-hop’s historical past. You realize, like, I attempt to inform individuals, when Tupac died in September 1996, he was undisputedly the largest hip-hop artist within the recreation. He was No. 1. After which six months later, Biggie dies. You realize, I bear in mind being at The Supply journal on the time. We’re like, yo, is hip-hop over? Like, we’re all in ache. Like, our greatest guys, the fellows that actually had been main the tradition are gone. After which out of that got here, you recognize, Puffy’s ascension and Grasp P after which DMX. And hip-hop really acquired larger than it ever was. You realize, we go into the bling bling period. We develop into the profitable cultural juggernaut that conquers popular culture, however we’re nonetheless rooted in these darkish instances. And I believe these darkish instances do outline us, sadly. So hopefully, you recognize, we are able to get out of that cycle, you recognize?

RASCOE: Let’s convey it again to Takeoff.


RASCOE: And I wish to play somewhat little bit of him speaking in a clip that Advanced Music tweeted out.


TAKEOFF: I need longevity. I wish to keep constant. I wish to be eight, 10 years, 20 years later, you continue to bear in mind my music, nonetheless be capable of reside on.


TAKEOFF: And you continue to bear in mind me and nonetheless bear in mind all of the work we put out.

RASCOE: How do you assume, you recognize, Takeoff goes to reside on via the music that he is made?

WILSON: Yeah. That willpower – I believe Takeoff’s affect will likely be that, you recognize, you not solely wish to achieve success, you wish to actually, you recognize, be a profession artist. You actually wish to put collectively a complete catalogue. You wish to preserve going and evolving as an artist, that you simply’re not simply outlined by one hit. My hope is that Takeoff reveals that he took rapping very severely. He used substance to all his lyrics and what he put down on paper and what he rapped about. And I believe that that is the usual that is all the time been the essence of hip-hop. And those that sort of give to that may have lengthy careers on this.

RASCOE: Elliott Wilson, chief content material officer at Tidal and the host of “Rap Radar,” thanks a lot for becoming a member of us.

WILSON: All proper. Thanks, guys. Admire y’all.

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