New York, NY – Whether you know him as Avon Barksdale from The Wire or Ace from Paid in Full or Barry from VH1’s new show, The Breaks, Wood Harris has always come across as an articulate gentleman. Which makes his latest interview with VLADTV regarding his former Wire boss David Simon’s use of the n-word automatically compelling.
To backtrack, Simon, whose community ties to Baltimore date well before he was capturing Omar brandishing a shot, came under social media fire last September when he called FOX News pundit Sean Hannity a “nigga” while basking in the incredulity of him hosting a town hall meeting about African-American issues.
When asked, Harris immediately deaded it as a non-issue.
“I’m not one of those people who wants the weight of that word to be around me my whole life,” before touching how All Eyez on Me director Benny Boom prohibited the word from being used on their 2009 flick, Next Day Air and saying people like Donald Trump present bigger problems than one word.
“I think that the n-word [coming] from David Simon … it don’t mean nothing to me. I don’t care about that. I’m more concerned about Trump and Sean Hannity and the people that Trump puts in office who affect our lives moving forward.”
The rumblings of a potentially new Kendrick Lamar album have sparked a conversation that Hip Hop may regain its early ’90s political edge in the wake of the Trump presidency. It was a topic discussed on the latest #DXBreakdown — Kendrick Lamar, Drake & Rap’s Cold War as host Justin “The Company Man” Hunte pointed out that K. Dot’s lyrics about Trump and Russia were uncharted waters for a rapper of his stature. Even at 47, Harris still keeps his ear to the street and went on to proclaim that today’s newer crop of rap artists aren’t exactly down to get political over racial faux pas.
“Listen, the younger generation, they don’t give a shit about that,” Harris said, countering DJ Vlad’s point on how he personally refrains from using the n-word. “You think Lil Yachty care if somebody say the n-word? You think these young cats care about that? They don’t. Well … not all of them are that way. It’s just been seduced into culture so much.”
He continued, “People who can be fighters for the culture aren’t there anymore. There’s no Tupac voice. There’s no Hip Hop doing it. Hip Hop don’t do shit.”
Can Hip Hop Get Political Again?: We gotta break it down.
Aside from King Kunta (who he openly admitted first came to mind to counter his Lil Yachty example), Harris also pointed out another prominent MC he considered was an exception to the rule: J. Cole.
While the next lineage of The Bomb Squad is sorted out, watch the Wood Harris VLADTV interview up above.