This past weekend, Lil Wayne released a new mix tape in his series, “Dedication 4”. One of the tracks, featuring Nicki Minaj gives listeners her unsolicited opinion on whose name she’s checking off on the ballot this year. She raps, “I’m a Republican voting for Mitt Romney, You lazy b*tches is f**king up the economy.” It is this sole line in her verse that has had twitter, Facebook, and the blogosphere buzzing wild. Social media says that this is Minaj’s public, endorsement for the “Keep America American!” Campaign, but I beg to differ. If you are familiar with Nicki Minaj, she has openly expressed that she has various alter egos in her music. One of her most famous ones would be Roman Zolanski, a verbally viscous and violent boy who “emerges” from Nicki and oozes into her lyrics, when she herself has been verbally attacked. He might be the culprit for her last outburst, but who’s to honestly know. All I can think is what Nicki has done is market smart. If you don’t know what I mean by that let me lay it out for you. She has taken something that is not only politically relevant, but also socially relevant and integrated it into her music. Whether she agrees with what she’s spitting, it is irrelevant to her, because it seems to be done in the name of shock value. She wanted the attention, and she got it just with the use of a few expletives in the process.
This occurrence, although not the first time a music artist has publicly endorsed a candidate, has raised a valid question: Has the Music industry, or Music artists in general begun to affect politics, and how young adults vote? Some critics might suggest yes. I believe this assumptions stems from the fact that adolescents can be a very impressionable age group. If Adolescents and young adults take fashion advice, or vocabulary usage, and “life lessons” from the artist they’re blasting through their headphone, manipulation is easy. Who’s to say they also won’t take political advice too? But on the other end, some might argue that music, is meant to be listened to and not critically analyzed for political stances or anything else for that matter. It would be naïve to say that all burgeoning adults are truly that impressionable. With voting season creeping slowly in the distance the older public must wonder whether young adults are voting for the candidate because they agree with their policies about health care and the economy, or that their favorite artist just released a new single, with a contagious hook and are in the voting booths nodding along to it, singing “I vote Democratic, or Republican”.
What do you think?