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What if Rick Ross and Meek Mills formed a New Group called the “Broccoli Squad?”

Hey, it’s Chenjerai! As some of you know I’m a hip-hop artist. My first album went gold in several countries in Europe. But here’s the point.  I’ve noticed that rappers tend to rap a lot about some things (e.g., cars, money, etc.) and not so much about other things (e.g., being healthy, doing something to improve your community, etc.). Rappers talk about consuming and buying a lot of things. However, it’s almost as if there’s an unspoken rule that we can’t promote and talk about eating or drinking things that are healthy and good for us.

Does eating healthy make you uncool in the black community?

It‘s almost like they had a conversation that went like this:

Weezy: “Okay here are the rules - you can talk about alcohol, guns and other stuff that brings down our communities. However, nobody is allowed to talk about anything that is actually good for anybody or that lifts up our communities. Nothing good!! If we hear you say anything about being healthy or telling people how to improve their well-being we might have to beat you up. Also, we will make sure nobody works on collaborations with you on your mix-tapes.  Understood?

Drake: “But I thought we were supposed to talk how we live? I have a little brother. And I want him to grow up healthy and strong. Can’t I make at least just one song where -”

Rick Ross: “NO!!! Then get out of hip-hop. Go be a crossing guard or a gym teacher. Go be a librarian. Go work for “Yo Gabba Gabba” or something. We keep it REAL over here.”

Of course that conversation didn’t happen. But here’s one that did. Last week some friends of mine who rap were trying to figure out what their song was going to be about:

First Rapper” “Yo - Let’s make this song about getting money.”

Second Rapper “Nah. Let’s make this about girls dancing.”

Me: “Isn’t every song about that? Why don’t you make this song about eating healthy foods and living a longer life?”

Everybody: (Rolling with Laughter) Bwaahahahahahahaha! !!!

First Rapper: Yeah how would that song go?

Me: Uh.. well uh.. like..

First Rapper: “How is that hook gonna go? (Rapping) “Everybody eat that celery” Eat that celery!”  (Laughing) “Ain’t nobody trying to hear that!!!”

Second Rapper: “No maybe it could go “ I’m sipping on that spring water” (dancing) “Sipping on that spring water!”

They both laughed uncontrollably. I too tried not to laugh but I couldn’t help it.

Me: Yeah. “Well, when you put it like that….But I was just wondering if every song has to be about destroying our health or doing something that doesn’t help our communities?”

First Rapper: “Pretty much. Nobody wants to hear about eating right or anything like that. It’s like it just isn’t fun.”

Me: Hmmm.

Second Rapper: “You can’t rap about food fam.” 

Me: “Yeah - but is it cool to be obese, have diabetes or high blood pressure? Or to have seizures from poor health like Rick Ross did?” “None of that seems cool either. Ricky Rozay be looking kind of sloppy though.”

First Rapper: “Yeah but he’s getting money." “Big Meech. Larry Hoover. Eating Celery Hallelujah. One nation. Under Spring water…”

They both laughed uncontrollably...

You get the idea. Of course I understand where they were coming from. Nobody wants to support the “celery hip-hop movement.” Nobody’s going to download a mix-tape from “Vegetable Gang” or “Broccoli Squad.” Nobody is going to follow the “Cauliflower Unit” on Twitter. I don’t see people running out to the “Grapefruit Money” show or liking the “Maybach Cucumber music” page.

However, if it’s impossible for some artists to ADMIT that they are actually trying to eat healthy so that they can avoid future health risks; and that they're not all about some of the food and beverage products they endorse what does that mean for the black community?


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