This isn’t the first time a psychologist has said that hip hop hypnotizes children. There was an interview done back in 2013, by Dr. Boyce Watkins with Dr. Nelson Harrison. Their discussion was framed around a topic he had been speaking on for years at that time. That topic, the metaphysics of music. While we discuss the industry of hip hop, where it’s been and where it is today, it is not possible to overlook this aspect. As the audience we do have a responsibility to understand what we are tuned into.
We also need to consider what we allow our children to be exposed to. More to the point, we need to make sure we are aware, and acting as a real guide for those coming behind us. Old school heads may not all be fans the new rappers that are getting all the press right now. It’s important though, to recognize that real hip hop artists are still very much alive. Instead of the energy we put into what we do not like, we need to put energy into promoting what we do like.
The metaphysics of music, has a lot to do with this conversation on whether hip hop hypnotizes children. Some may even argue hip hop also hypnotizes adults too!
We’ve all heard that beat come on that stops us in our tracks. Every single one of us can think of a verse off the top of our heads that was said over a dope rhythm. In so many ways, this is how Dr. Nelson Harrison first noticed the power of music over others. As he was in school to become a doctor, he noticed how music helped change the ‘state’ of the sick. It’s a great conversation from 2009. This will really help you to appreciate those Old heads when they complain about where hip hop is today.
Lots of old heads, actually do just wanna be entertained. They could care less about the metaphysics. But if you do take the time to listen to the interview, there are so many lessons for up and coming MC’s, producers, and musicians. “Music is heard exclusively in the right lobe, and Reading it is exclusively on the left lobe of the brain.” – Dr. Nelson Harrison
After discussing Jazz music, and how he came to discover how music was impacting the listener, he dives into hip hop around 28 minutes in. It’s a fascinating interview. The history of jazz is broken down, as well as how similar it is to the origins of hip hop. All of this is discussed from a scientific perspective.
Recently Dr. Boyce Watkins had a different Psychologist on his YouTube recently and they discussed how toxic hip hop hypnotizes the children. Referencing Gunwalk, by Lil Wayne they start off the conversation and go from there. First, discussing how a song like that, might impact a young kid on his/her way to school each morning.
Dr. Monikah Ogando speaking on the influence of negative hip-hop music and more – with Dr. Boyce Watkins
Dr. Ogando, says that music has the ability to enhance our emotions. Music can make us happy, it can also make us angry when it’s got a certain message. She went on to also say it enhances learning, beyond simple 2+2=4. On a bigger picture, music informs our lives, and how we approach each day. I’m glad both her and Dr. Boyce made sure to specify between ‘toxic’ hip hop, and the artform itself. On our site you’ll hear about the tales from the hood often. There is a place for these songs, which inform society about what is going on.
In so many ways, this is again where I feel parents and older heads need to act as guardians. Hip Hop hypnotizes the consciousness. We can use it to lift one another up, even if corporations are simply using it as a tool to make money.
When people stop buying it, they’ll stop making it.
We have to help the youth understand why these songs are being made, and help them to see that they are not meant to glorify negative situations. Many of the ‘toxic hip hop stories’ that so many Doctors are discussing, are the stories mainstream media just won’t cover. It’s an ongoing narrative of a people who continue to be marginalized, and ignored. Ironically even while making songs about the level of toxic reality in several black communities, they are still being ignored. I love that this point, also came up in the conversation. Yes, these songs can be toxic and can harm young children, If they do not have people in their lives to help them understand that music.
“Despite what’s coming down the pike, do you have people in your life to help you think critically about these things? … it’s not so much about what it is, it’s how we relate to it.” – Dr. Monikah Ogando
Let us know if you think Hip Hip Hypnotizes children, or if you agree with Dr. Ogando, That we all need to use our human minds to be critical thinkers.
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