Saturday, February 15, 2014

Danny Brown vs Detroit vs Everybody

It's been awhile since I've did one of these rant pieces. Today's rant has to do with Danny Brown but on a deeper level Detroit's culture of Detroit vs Detroit. I'm a fan of Danny too just to be clear this isn't meant to be an attack on him, it was just something his past and recent actions inspired. Lastly, just like the last rant this may not be the most clear or even cohesive thing you've read of mine but it is my true feelings unfiltered. With that all being said, enjoy.

Read any article on Danny Brown and you'll more than likely see a reference to him as "Detroit's own" or "Detroit artist" etc. He has become synonymous with the city just like fellow Motor City artists Eminem and Big Sean. However, lately I've noticed he has not actually done a show in Detroit in quite sometime and it isn't like he hasn't had the opportunity to. Last time he took to a Detroit stage was October 10th, 2012 as a apart of A$AP Rocky's Long.Live.A$AP. tour with Schoolboy Q. Before that was in 2011 with Childish Gambino. He has since embarked on four tours the "Old & Reckless" with Kitty, "Worst of Both Worlds" with Baauer, "2 High 2 Die" with Action Bronson and now most recently starting in April "The Old Danny Brown" tour. He has been to Michigan on all of these tours, he has went to cities such as Grand Rapids, Ann Arbor, Rothbury and for his latest tour he'll perform in Lansing. Yet no Detroit appearances.

Now the fact that Danny Brown hasn't done a show in Detroit since 2012 isn't my main problem, I understand there may be venue issues and other behind the scene issues that has prevented him from performing. It's the fact that back in 2013 he was quick to call out Big Sean for using Detroit as a promotional tool and for not really being in the hood "like that". He also pointed out the fact that "he went to the best high school in the city, you know, he probably was real spoiled or sheltered" in his interview with FADER. In Rolling Stone he "clarified" his statements and added "My point with Big Sean is that every time you hear him in an interview and every time he do anything, he's like "Cause I'm from Detroit! I'm from Detroit!" There's ho-ass niggas from Detroit and there's gangstas in Detroit. Just being from a place doesn't dictate, doesn't mean anything. My whole point is about inspiring people to do things to get out of Detroit. Somebody like him hasn't been in Detroit forever, in years. He repping it like it's a cool place to be."

Danny is right Detroit isn't a cool place to be. You may have seen the news stories of corrupt government officials and the city's bankruptcy. Let me tell you that shit is lightweight. Detroit's problem is way deeper than mayors and money. I've had a gun pulled on me, seen a dead body and seen multiple drug deals go down by the age of 13. I don't go around bragging about being from Detroit. It isn't a good place. However I'm not ashamed of it, it's my hometown and even though it's fucked up I will always have love for it. Danny shares a similar opinion "I moved to Royal Oak, that’s where I still stay. I love Michigan. I might not like Detroit so much, but I love Michigan. Don’t get me wrong—I do love Detroit, I just know we got problems." One of the major problem is exactly what Danny did though and that's Detroit vs Detroit. We're so quick to call out another nigga for not being hood enough or not being in the hood but ask any real hood nigga if they want to be in the hood they'll tell you "No.". The thing is Danny is really from the hood so he should know this already, I can't explain why it's that way it something that just is. I'm not even going to act like I have a solution for the problem. Sadly it's just as much apart of Detroit's culture as Bettermade Chips and Faygo.

Back to my point which is Danny Brown and his claim of Sean always using Detroit or bringing it up whenever he does something, if you check out the poster or promo for his latest tour "The Old Danny Brown" you'll see a skull wearing a cap with an Old English D. Ask anyone in the United States what is the first thing they think of when they see it and 99% of people with either say the Detroit Tigers or the city of Detroit itself. Either way it's Detroit right? So I find it funny how Danny chose that as the promotional image for a tour which features no Detroit show. You might say "Well Drop, how do you know he isn't using the D for Danny"? Naaaah. I'm damn well sure it means what it always has meant  and that is Detroit. So if anything it is hypocritical of Danny. More then anything it is ironic. The rapper who has four installments of a mixtape called Detroit State of Mind, calls out another Detroit artist for using Detroit for personal gain and then turns around and does it himself.  Even more ironic is the tour's name "The Old Danny Brown" because to me he couldn't be any more different from the (oldHybrid Danny Brown.

However, in the end I guess you can even call me a hypocrite. I mean I am another nigga from Detroit criticizing another nigga from Detroit and when I think about it, that's all Danny really did to Sean in the first place. Like I said earlier can't explain it that's just the culture of the environment. "Detroit versus everybody." Even if it means going against Detroit itself. Sad.

Update: Seems like Danny seen the tweets I sent out last night about him. He responded hostile initially but we hashed it out. I believe he thought I was questioning his "Detroit-ness" which wasn't my intention. Like I said it's all cool now but I can't help but laugh at the situation. Yet again, as I stated in this very editorial another example of Detroit vs Detroit.