Hot 97 has been the hot spot for beef and drama. From the Lil Kim shootout back in 2001 that has her in pre-jury trial to the recent events that unfolded during the now infamous 50 Cent interview, Hot 97 has now become the cornerstone of beef. But some of hip-hop’s finest are going to take a stand against a radio station that they feel promotes beef in order to garner higher ratings.
According to Rolling Stone, the newly formed Hip-Hop Coalition (consisting of such high profile artists such as Afrika Bambaataa, M1 of Dead Prez and Roxanne Shante) held an anti-Hot 97 rally in New York’s Union Square Park.
Rosa Clemente, journalist and organizer, told Rolling Stone”Hot 97 actively promotes conflict within our communities and among our artists…We have to target [Hot 97’s parent company] Emmis Communications, because they’re fueling controversy between artists to get ratings.”
The coalition cites many instances when the radio station could have done something instead of bring highly controversial and explosive subjects to the station. From the ill mannered parody “Tsunami Song” about the tragic events in South Asia to the recent altercation, the Hip-Hop Coalition feels as if the station promotes the beef for higher ratings. They also demanded things such as anti-violence public service announcements.
“The violence is sensationalized,” says M1 of Dead Prez, “and I think more than anything they intend to benefit from it.”
A spokesman from the station told Rolling Stone that they are being targeted unfairly.
“It’s interesting that they single out Hot 97. Why not the artists that make the music, the record labels that produce the records, the record stores that sell them and then the consumers that buy them? . . . Hot 97 has been number one in the eighteen-to-thirty-four-year-old demographic for close to ten years, so obviously there are a whole lot of people that enjoy the station and feel differently. We only play what’s out there: If the violence didn’t exist in the song, they wouldn’t hear it on Hot 97.”