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The legendary Darryl “DMC” McDaniels of Run-DMC was in Atlanta last week and had few interesting points to make about the current state of Hip-Hop and how rappers have to take responsibility for their actions. Not being preachy or coming off as an old head, DMC told Frank Ski and Wanda Smith from Atlanta’s V-103’s Frank & Wanda Morning Show that his mission still is and has always been about empowering the youth through Hip-Hop. He stated:

“Now I’m trying to school the entertainment business. We have to realize we were put in these positions for a reason…I was given the foundation of Hip Hop. I was given the foundation of Hip Hop and what Run DMC did. People said, man, Run DMC wasn’t just a rap group to us, it wasn’t just about music…We changed relationships, we changed perception, we changed business, we changed fashion. So for me I have a responsibility, so what happened was, I said if I do die tomorrow, people know my musical legacy. First to go Gold, first to go Platinum, first on the Rolling stones, all that stuff but nobody knows about the little boy, Darryl, that became DMC. What I want to communicate to the younger generation is there’s not a generation gap with these “Hip-Hoppers” but there’s an information gap.

The OGs ain’t communicating with the shorties. All these rappers can do and say what they wanna say, it’s not what they’re saying, but the problem with Hip-Hop is what they AIN’T saying and I tell these kids, “Yo, all the great rap records, all these legendary rappers, Run DMC, Grandmaster Flash, Public Enemy, Afrika Bambaataa and the Zulu Nation, which was a street gang in New York, all the great rap records was written by individuals, 12 to 22 years old. These kids don’t know that. They think what I’m saying at 45…they go, ‘Excuse me Mr. DMC but all due respect you’re more mature, and wise and you have experience.’

And I say you know what my little sister or my little brother, that’s true but I’ve been saying this since I was 8. Go listen to what we were rapping, and when we was making our rap records it wasn’t just to spit a freestyle to impress my friends, it wasn’t just about radio play and record play, we had the power to be educators, politicians… We had religious people going, ‘Do you hear and see what these young people are saying?’”

The newly elected Rock & Roll Hall of Famer who is currently doing show dates with a live band and rocked Atlanta’s Hard Rock café last week also stressed Hip-Hop’s importance in preparing kids to think bigger and reach beyond many of their poor economic conditions and to have dreams. He added:

“Now at this point in my career, I got three things going for me….I ain’t dead, I ain’t get locked up and I didn’t O-D. Now the universe is telling me, DMC, “Deliver My Children.” You can use Hip-Hop to communicate to all those little boys and girls that are just like you. And the main thing that I gotta communicate to these kids, these foster kids which is my situation, for at-risk youth homeless kids, kids dropping out of school, kids abusing the drugs, kids joining a gang is this, they need to really understand this and I say this forcefully….THAT HIP-HOP DID NOT JUST CREATE RAPPERS. We got these kids looking at MTV and BET and VH1 and all these reality shows. Hip Hop created journalists, doctors, lawyers, scientists, directors, astronauts, all types of people.

Eric B and Rakim, Public Enemy, Run DMC and things like that…we didn’t tell kids what to do, we just told them what was there for them and kids call in and say, ‘Just for your saying I’m DMC in the place to be’ is your favorite rap…we used to be like, ‘Be cool, Go To School/ Don’t mess with drugs and thugs and you’ll be cool. I had dude call me and go, ‘Yo DMC man…I just wanna let you know my name is T-Bone from Houston Texas and just from what y’all were saying…Afrika Bambaataa who was one of the biggest in the Zulu Nation, Run DMC, Public Enemy, LL, Tribe Called Quest, we were young guys talking about our situation… Yeah, I was selling drugs but I don’t do that anymore and he became like a teacher.

Just for your saying this, I wanted to be in Hip-Hop. I got my Adidas, I got my shell-toes, I got my gold chains but all of a sudden DMC talking about going to college and high school and stuff. He said man I was gang banging and selling drugs but just ‘cause I wanted to be that complete representation of Hip-Hop culture, he said, I went and got a GED because he knew having this piece of paper made him official and with that GED he got into community college and in community college he said, man I saw a whole new world of opportunity I never knew existed out there in the streets cause the rappers was giving me that information. Now he’s living in Houston, has a 3 million dollar home, with four whips outside and he’s a doctor.”

With a street in their hometown of Hollis Queens currently in consideration of being Run-DMC JMJ Way, The O.G. DMC also added:

“See we would give vision. We came from those low places. You got guys out here making records now… Okay on your first album you were thug, bossman, superman, pimp, and on your 7th album you don’t do that no more. The Hip-Hop business has made it to a point where these drug dealers don’t have to sell a physical drug anymore because they don’t have definite structure. Because these kids is looking at rappers and saying, I have to be like them by any means necessary. We didn’t say praise me. Here in America, we’re praising people for bringing negative ideas and concepts and images that do exist to our face and we’re celebrating that.

One thing about Hip-Hop is we said, ‘No don’t do that because you can do this.’ Like I said, it’s not what they’re saying that’s wrong, it’s what they ain’t saying. Tell these young boys and girls the truth, let these women know that you don’t gotta be on reality TV. You see half naked women on reality TV so these little girls is looking at BET, MTV and VH1 going that’s all I could be. Why can’t we see fully clothed, fully dressed, positive Black women on TV talking some sense so these Black girls can look and say I can do that when I grow up. Not just let me be in a video…let me be on a record.”

Check out the King Of Rock dropping more knowledge on The Frank & Wanda Show: