As one-third of Brooklyn rap group Flatbush ZOMBiES, emcee Zombie Juice has definitely done his part in retaining artistic value in hip-hop throughout his career.
The Flatbush trio is an outlier in a musical landscape of quantity over quality, choosing to take their time on carefully crafted projects rather than quick-fire releases that keep their names in the headlines.
In a recent series of Twitter-ramblings, Juice ruminated on a perceived lack of appreciation by today’s youth for the artistic offerings of their predecessors, a notion every artist must ponder at some point considering the exponential decrease in the average listener’s attention span.
It’s clear that Juice was excited, as the tweets are at times hard to decipher, but the general gist is simple: Juice is calling out the youth—artists and fans alike—for having no appreciation for what came before them.
He admits that it’s not necessary for newer artists to like the work of their predecessors, but that it’s important to at least be knowledgeable about it, if for no other reason than to preserve craftsmanship and originality.
Juice goes on to lament that decreased attention spans and narcissistic tendencies fueled by social media have caused an entire generation of art consumers to look upon novelty and originality with indifference.
Towards the end of his musings, Juice admits that he may sound like an old fogey to some, but stands by his assertion that a lack of appreciation for the legacies of yesteryear is detrimental to the culture.
And he has a point.
At the end of the day, there has to be a balance struck between the opposing ends of the artistic spectrum—mindless faux-innovation and the overly protective nostalgia addiction. Hopefully, artists like Juice will be instrumental in fostering that balance.