In addition to being featured on some of the biggest songs of 2016, Lil Yachty has been garnering plenty of publicity from his multitude of incendiary statements, and his recent feature on Pitchfork is just the latest notch in the young non-rapper’s controversial belt.
Throughout his stay in the spotlight so far, Yachty has vocally eschewed the traditions of hip-hop at almost every turn, claiming that he doesn’t consider himself a rapper, as well as being woefully indifferent to the legacies of two of hip-hop’s greatest icons, Tupac and Notorious B.I.G.
At this point, Lil Yachty is well aware of what happens every time he makes a statement contrary to the popular opinion of hip-hop fans en masse—he gets mad attention. Yachty is far from the first artist to the reap the benefits of playing the role of contrarian—just ask Joe Budden or Kanye West if there’s such a thing as bad publicity.
Clear trolling aside, Yachty has already gone on record as being unfamiliar with the material of Biggie, so, of course, he was going to answer “overrated” when presented with only two close-ended answer choices. Anything less would have most certainly garnered cries of “hypocrite.” Pitchork set him up, and he knocked it out.
Yachty’s verdict of “overrated” in regards to one of the most highly acclaimed emcees of all time is a planned spectacle, a WWE monologue played out in hip-hop terms. You can see it in Yachty’s demeanor as he answers the question—he's in on it. Even if he's not, Yachty as well as Pitchfork and countless other publications—this article included, you got me guys—will inevitably benefit from the "controversy."
This kind of manipulation of the average hip-hop fan’s knee-jerk reaction, especially in the case of Lil Yachty, is nothing new. It provides an entertaining narrative surrounding a buzzing artist, but little more.
Let’s allow Yachty have his views and just go about our business.
By Brent Bradley. Follow him on Twitter.
Photo Credit: Pitchfork