Ghostwriting in hip-hop has been a consistent theme all year and this morning BJ The Chicago Kid stopped by The Breakfast Club to share his own thoughts on the practice.
When asked about the age old practice, BJ expresses a sort of nonchalance towards the idea of writing for others, characterizing it as "a collective effort to make something that can be a part of your freaking soundtrack for life." He mentions writing for artists like Usher and Trey Songz and actually dispelled the use of the term at all, saying: "We don't ghostwrite, you either write or you don't. And at the end of the day if a guy got a bag of money then that's what happens. I'm going to tell you everybody in music got people in the studio to help creatively."
The comments come amidst a lot of talk surrounding the idea of ghostwriting in the business. It's one of rap's stubborn pillars along with beefs: the idea that a rapper should write all of his own rhymes.
To be sure, lyrically collaboration happens in absolutely every genre. Name any hit song and there's a good chance it took a village to see it through to your ears. It's a natural outgrowth of the innately collaborative nature of music in the first place. With that understanding it makes more sense that BJ would be a more willing participant in the craft, but his honesty is real. Anyone who's been witness to a memorable recording session can attest to the kind of mood, feeling or attitude in the studio.
There's also a clear distinction, in my opinion, between an emcee and a rap artist. The latter being just a performer of raps while the former is a central creator.
BJ didn't say anything new or particularly progressive, but sometimes it just helps to hear the truth.
The Chicago native is expected to release his Motown debut, In My Mind, in early 2016.