Wrapping up an absolute banner year, 22 year old Long Beach rapper Vince Staples has now sat down with CNN for their “Get Political” series to discuss the shifting nature in hip-hop in regards to an increase in “glorifying” drug use.
“Drugs have always been a part of music, and it went from the drug dealer to the drug user now. There’s more music being made about the drug use than it was, you know, the distribution of the drugs,” he says before going on to talk about a friend who he recently lost to drug use, saying “He didn’t know what Xanax was a couple of years ago.”
“This is the first time I can say in my life where I am seeing people become drug addicts,” Staples revealed, before going on to say that he believes there are so many better things that he and fellow artists can do “than show these kids which drugs to take.”
He also opened up on the correlation between suspension rates in schools which “start as early as kindergarten,” and drop-out rates later in schooling life, therefore increasing the chances for run-ins with the police.
“The first time I had ever been in handcuffs in my entire life was on school campus,” he said. “When suspension rates are lower, the overall academic performance rates of the school rises for everybody.”
Vince Staples has made a name for himself this year not just for his incredible album Summertime ’06 but for his social awareness and his refusal to shy away from controversial topics. He made headlines recently for his comments on 90’s rap, and has been known for his humour like when he weighed in on the GQ Men Of The Year. He will be in Australia in just over a month for a run of shows including performances at St Jerome’s Laneway Festival 2016. See info for that here!