When people say rap — i.e. rap that is a lot of lyrics about fighting and guns and killing — what people usually think about is that it’s only half the story with all the violence. That’s the most prevalent.
But it’s certainly a whole story and it’s a great story. A lot of things like drugs, drugs, drugs — it’s all part of the story and not a lot of the attention that’s paid to what happens to people in the streets. There’s a lot more to it. There’s a lot more to it than violence. It goes in some directions that don’t involve violence, but it’s a bigger picture story.
I don’t know if the rap is a bigger story, actually. It certainly isn’t a lot of violence. It’s all a whole lot of drama, but the drama has a really good plot and a really good ending. But it’s still a very strong story by its own right. I think people think rap’s a lot of things, but I don’t think any of the things they think of are the full story. I don’t think people think of rap as a whole. If rap made up the full story and just told the bad side of life in this country, then I think people would say that. They would say, “You have a black character. You have an African-American character. Do you know what your main character does? Tell me.” [Laughs.] But the story’s real.
Is there any song that you think really captures what it feels like to be a black woman in America? Is there one?
The first song I can really say that comes to mind is “Black and Gold.” [Laughs] I mean, for me, I really think I’ve captured my life better than I can convey in one song. I didn’t record that song, and I don’t know how it came out. But I really think it captures the way I feel about life and about being in this country, where I don’t feel appreciated. I didn’t get my fair share. [Laughs.] I don’t know if it’s any other country or not, but I would say that the song “Black and Gold” is one of my favorite songs because it really captures how I feel about being a woman in America. It’s so much deeper than just being a black woman and then it’s this other side that I didn’t even know I had. How could I live without being appreciated
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