“State of the Culture” is the show you turn on to hear unfiltered, unapologetic, gritty opinions in regards to topics within hip hop culture — whether you agree with what’s being said or not. Joe Budden, Remy Ma, Jinx, and Eboni K. Williams aren’t here to hold your hand in their debates and sugarcoat their words. They’re here to say what everyone else is afraid of saying, and do so with no hesitation. From talking about music, politics, sports and everything in between; the hosts never hold back. Welcome to “State of the Culture.”
“State Of The Culture” is back and “Savage” is the name of the game this week. To no surprise, Megan Thee Stallion’s internet-breaking remix with Beyoncé is first up on the docket, which then unfolds into a bigger conversation about Queen Bey’s unique ability to sway pop culture in any direction she co-signs. We also saw Joe and Eboni get into a debate about who deserves the “best performer of all time” title, and heftier topics like social distancing and its positive impact on the environment (and whether or not we’ll fall back into old habits once the COVID-19 pandemic slows down.) Come for the hot takes, stay for the juicy stories from our SOTC panel, as they play their new game “Two Truths And You A Lie.” Check out our recap of the latest episode below!
1. “Savage (Remix)” breaks the internet
Megan Thee Stallion and Beyoncé’s surprise remix to “Savage” dropped on Wednesday, and completely turned the internet upside down. Jinx thinks this is yet another example of Queen Bey’s unshakeable influence. “I don’t know anyone else in the culture who can do that besides maybe Drake,” he says. Remy Ma thinks the savagery that Bey was spittin in her verses further proves that she has an inner Remy. She also appreciated the genuine excitement Meg shared about collaborating with her idol on the remix. Joe loved the song, but is more intrigued about how Beyoncé’s co-sign of OnlyFans has changed the narrative.
2. The Beyoncé effect is real
Piggybacking off Joe’s point, Eboni makes the observation that Beyoncé can single handedly make trends cool simply by putting her stamp of approval on it. Remy explains that the work she’s put in over the years has made this possible. “[Beyonce’s] name is so squeaky clean, it literally appears she can do no wrong,” Remy says. “So when she does anything, she’s the model of perfection.” Joe is impressed at how Bey always manages to team up with the “it girl” of the moment, which Jinx pins on her clever ability to leave no women behind.
3. Eboni and Joe go head-to-head who is the best performer of all time
While discussing the Beyoncé collaboration with Megan Thee Stallion, Joe refers to Bey as “arguably one of the greatest performers of all time.” Eboni quickly challenges that by saying it’s an “insult to Michael Jackson’s legacy” to even consider anyone coming close.
4. Drake hold his fans over with Dark Lane Demo Tapes
Drizzy Drake has been doing his part to keep our quarantine blues away by dropping his new project Dark Lane Demo Tapes. While it clearly serves as the appetizer before his next full-length studio album, Joe appreciates that it was something to appease the fans. Jinx points out Drake’s complex ability to be able to set fans’ expectations at the perfect moment, so that they can simply focus on the music. “That’s really hard to do at level of artistry,” he says.
5. The COVID-19 pandemic shifts how artists release music
Joe admits that he feels sorry for artists who are tasked with dropping new music at a time where people may not be in the mood to hear it. He remembers JAY-Z’s The Blueprint and Fabolous’ debut album, Ghetto Fabolous, both coming out on 9/11, and how panicked it made Def Jam. But, he also recalls both albums being hugely successful despite the timing. “I don’t know how many artists today are that brave,” he says. Jinx thinks that public appearances being cancelled means artists solely have their skill to rely on, which presents a challenge. Remy Ma questions what happens to artists who depend on touring, and Joe predicts there will “be a line” of artists waiting to get on festival lineups once the coronavirus shut down ends.
6. Eboni sounds off on Diddy’s call to hold black votes if necessary
Diddy recently stopped by Naomi Campbell’s “No Filter With Naomi” show and expressed his opinions on the upcoming election. He feels historically, black Americans have been too willing to vote for Democratic candidates, who in turn neglect our issues. He goes so far as to say he’s willing to “hold the black vote hostage” if needed. Eboni calls Diddy’s call to action “dangerous and grossly irresponsible,” explaining there’s a difference between political influence and power. “Don’t get it twisted Black America,” she says. “Yes, you can influence an election, but the American political process will move without us. We cannot afford to hold our vote.” Jinx thinks the first order of business is to decide what black people want from our elected officials.
7. Social distancing has done the planet some good
Now that traveling and large scale events have come to a standstill due to the Coronavirus pandemic, global pollution has reduced dramatically. Some of the most polluted cities on the planet, like New Delhi, have experienced the freshest air in decades. Joe thinks the pursuit of money has trumped our concern for the planet, and that “if not for the economy, we would make some better decisions,” about the environment. Remy Ma thinks making climate change a priority is a no-brainer given we can’t survive without natural resources like water and air. Jinx thinks the positive changes to the environment since social distancing shows that we have the power to save the planet. Eboni thinks the pandemic has shown how poor Americans respond to being inconvenienced. “Absent of something of this magnitude, I don’t see us having the discipline to give the earth a break even with a stimulus,” she says. “Most people operate in such complete self-interest, it becomes impossible to take on a collective action.”
8. Remy trips the panel up with her two truths and a lie
During SOTC’s new segment “Two Truths and You A Lie,” Remy trips up her fellow panelists with her believable and very detailed life stories. Fun fact: Did you know that back in the day, Remy tripped her grandmother as a prank and got cut out of all the family photos? Joe’s got some interesting travel stories, including getting detained in multiple international airports.
9. Jinx’s reveals his biggest phobia
While playing “Two Truths and You A Lie,” Jinx revealed that he’s deathly afraid of clowns. It all started when he was 6 years old. After seeing the movie “It,” he was temporarily afraid to take showers. The more you know!