In 1973, the San Francisco based R&B group Tower of Power had a hit song that posed the question “What is Hip”(?) Right off, the hippest thing about the song was the lead singer of the group at the time, Lenny Williams, you know, dude that sung “Cause I Love You” … okay, okay… Kanye used the sample for “Overnight Celebrity”. So now i just “hipped” you to some new stuff and that’s what blogs are suppose to do, I guess.
The second “hippest” thing about it was that they chose to analyze or define “hip”, for those that don’t relate to the possibly jaded lingo: “What is style?” or “What is cool?”, or for that matter, “what is dope”? I’m all about style, and in my world, if you have to think too much about it, you probably don’t have any. Style can’t be too contrived. Cool, if you have to try too hard, you’re probably not that cool. Cool people are just cool. Last year Ebony Magazine published who they thought was the “25 Coolest Brothers of All Time”. They had brothers like Marvin Gaye, Muhammed Ali, Barak Obama, Billy D. Williams and Jay Z. Yo, Jay, I’m really envying you on this one… I mean, a Grammy would be nice, but to be considered of the “25 Coolest of All Time”, well damn!
My purpose for donning the “Blogger hat” at this time (as a Brother that should be considered for the “Coolest….” list the next time it is published) is to set the record straight about “What is hip?”, “What is cool?”, “What is style?”, “What is good?”, “What is sexy?”, etc., etc. Let’s go back to the song, a classic by the way and if you’re not hip, go to itunes and cop it NOW!!! This is the stuff that was very influential in my musical style. Let’s break it down verse by verse:
SO YA WANNA DUMP OUT YO’ TRICK BAG EASE ON IN A HIP THANG
BUT YOU AINT SURE EXACTLY WHAT IS HIP
SO YOU STARTED TO LET YOUR HAIR GROW
SPENT BIG BUCKS ON YOUR WARDROBE
SOMEHOW YOU KNOW THERE’S MUCH MORE TO THE TRIP
You don’t have to have “hit a lick” to be in style…….
WHAT IS HIP?, TELL ME TELL ME IF YOU THINK YOU KNOW, WHAT IS HIP?
IF YOU’RE REALLY HIP THE PASSING YEARS WILL SHOW
YOU’RE INTO THE HIP TRIP, MAY BE HIPPER THAN HIP, BUT WHAT IS HIP?
Maybe hipper than hip, lol, like I said, hip can’t be contrived. Don’t look like you’re trying…
YOU BECAME A PART OF THE NEW BREED, BEEN SMOKIN’ ONLY THE BEST WEED
HANGING OUT WITH THE SO CALLED HIPPEST SET
BEEN SEEN IN ALL THE RIGHT PLACES, SEEN WITH ALL THE FACES
YOU SHOULD BE SATTISFIED BUT STILL IT AINT QUITE RIGHT
HIPNESS IS, WHAT IT IS! HIPNESS IS, WHAT IT IS! HIPNESS IS, WHAT IT IS!!
BUT SOMETIMES HIPNESS IS WHAT IT AIN’T!!
This might be my favorite part of the song… Hip is having the balls to DO YOU!!!
YOU DONE WENT AND FOUND YOU A GURU, IN AN EFFORT TO FIND YOU A NEW YOU
AND MAYBE EVEN MANAGE TO RAISE YOUR CONSCIENCE LEVEL.
AS YOU’RE STRIVING TO FIND THE RIGHT ROAD, THERE’S ONE THING YOU MIGHT KNOW
WHAT’S HIP TODAY MIGHT BECOME PASSE’
See…. that’s what I’m talkin’ about… How can something that’s hip today be passe tomorrow? Real style is not dictated by trends….
I’ve been rockin’n “Chucks” since waaaayyy back in the day. “Chucks” are straight up classics. These joints in the pictures are Barney’s New York exclusives and feature perforated patent leather material and are available for less that $100.You should also visit converse.com and design your own Chuck Taylor joints..