Dr Boyce Watkins: Rapper Vigalantee Teaches Hip Hop How to Respect Itself and Others 

Image and video hosting by TinyPic
Ever wonder when the day will come when rappers are not trying to bling with diamonds they spent their rent money to buy or balling in rented cars that will be towed away right after the video shoot is over? What about the day when Hip Hop artists take stands in their communities for something powerful, like fighting against racial oppression or for the respect of Black women? Well, Kansas City has an artist who embodies all of this in an unapologetic fashion.

His name is Vigalantee, and his goal is to get hip hop artists to stop (in his words) "Bojangling" for chump change. He lives for the street, fights for the poor and runs his own business in a highly profitable fashion. He takes the word "hustle" to a whole different level and is teaching artists how to change the game in their favor. AOL Black Voices had a chance to talk with Vigalantee about his work.

What is your name and where are you from?

Roger M. Suggs, aka Vigalantee. I am from Kansas City, Kansas.

You seem to feel that Hip Hop needs a transformation, what kind of transformation is that? Also, you are the creator of the "No Jangle Movement". What is that?

Hip Hop needs balance and in a hurry! The Big Brother is killing hip hop inside and out. That's why pimpin, thugs, and gangsta rap are thriving along with swag "Bojangling" at its finest. "No Jangle" means never compromising who you are, and realizing that you don't have to be ignorant to be successful. It also means respecting and recognizing those who've walked before you, taking the black face of shame off! It is a collection of teachers, students, and community forming an alliance for financial stability, community outreach, and connecting young adults in order to break the Willie Lynch mentality.

You are sort of a Hip Hop scholar, studying the game and understanding every aspect of it from old school to new school. What do you think it is that most artists do not understand about the music business?

That it is a snake business and its focus is never about loyalty and longevity. It's all about the "here today, gone tomorrow" mentality. Artists must know finance like they know their rhymes or this game will break your soul. Heart break is easy to overcome compared to a broken soul!

What has being a rapper with a successful independent label taught you about running a business?

Just because you can spit, that doesn't mean you know how to run a business. So, it's important to get real financial advice sooner rather than later!

What projects are you working on now and when will they be released?

M.I.R.A.C.L.E. (Music Inspiring Real Accomplishment Creating Love Everlasting) will be out on June 2nd and I have my "No Jangle" shirts that I'm pushing hard. I am also working with the FBOE (Fringe Benefits of Education) program, along with Denise McDowell, which helps young adults reach their dreams. I'm a rapper that believes in practicing what I preach!
You do a lot of work in the community. Why do you do it and how does Hip Hop help you do this work more effectively?

It helps me reach the youth quicker, because they love Hip Hop so much and the majority of them want to be involved in some area of hip hop as a career. So, it's a great icebreaker.

Vigalantee recently completed a song dedicated to the late Emmett Till. The song has gained critical acclaim and will be performed as part of major ceremonies to remember Till's life.
To learn more about Vigalantee, visit http://www.MySpace.com/Vigalantee

Added by: Chinita, 13/May/09 | Comments: 2

Mos Def - Casa Bey {New Official Video} 

New Official Video for Mos Def "Casa Bey" off of the new album, The Ecstatic, which comes out on June 9th

Added by: Chinita, 12/May/09 | Comments: 4

Login form



[ Full Size ]

Worth a visit

ads ads ads ads ads ads