At the age of 40, Jay-Z has been around long enough to watch hip-hop grow from it’s infancy to the big business it’s become today. Hov says the major difference between today’s rappers and those in the 80’s is a lack of aggression. The Brooklyn rapper blames it all on weed consumption.
“Public Enemy were a great force in the 80s,” Jay told Q Magazine via ContactMusic. “Chuck D was a powerful speaker and a great thinker. The intensity of life on the street in the 80s is right there in that mix. Hip hop sounds get mellower in the 90s, when people started smoking more weed.”
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Hov also talked about the influence gangster movies, in particular Scarface and The Godfather, have had on hip-hop.
“I think films are a major influence on any rapper. One of the ways you deal with your surroundings is almost to imagine you are in a drama on the big screen. It sounds crazy but it can help you survive to see yourself in terms of a story,” he said. “You could write a whole book on what hip hop has taken from ‘The Godfather’ and ‘Scarface’ and all those gangster films.“