Why I Chose Hip Hop over Fashion
Since I could remember, I've always loved Hip Hop. The instrumentation. The storytelling. The only examples of an American dream relatable to me. No matter what stage of my life, where I was, or who my group of friends were, Hip Hop has always been something I could connect with and seek comfort.
I was in high school when I fully accepted my love for writing and wanting to make it my profession. A stint on the journalism club, which worked on the yearbook for your senior class, was the epiphany I need to realize my calling (thanks, Ms. Giron!). Was I going to be a write, reporter, photography, etc., I wasn’t sure, but I knew I was passionate about journalism and would commit to it.
By the time I got to college and declared my major as journalism and media studies with a minor in digital communication, I could tell I was on the right track to taking my epiphany from high school into a real dream. At this time, there was no doubt in my mind that I wasn't going to be a fashion journalist working at Vogue. Of course it wouldn’t be easy and I knew there were hundreds of other girls with the Fashion Mecca as their dream job, but I knew I would be in the Vogue building and would eventually work my way up to Editor-in-Chief: I was going to be the Black Anna Wintour.
I was half-way done with my post-grad life and was a budding entrepreneur (trap pre neur as I like to now call myself) with my own website ready to write compelling fashion stories, write about local designers, and showcase my talent to eventually be part of the elite. This was my time to make a statement and establish my own voice instead of going with the trends and hype currently dictating the climate of the fashion world.
During this whole time of making decisions, changing my mind, and changing my mind from being a part of the in-crowd to wanting to shake things up and turn the world upside down (with innovation and creativity), I never realized I was falling more and more in love with Hip Hop although from the surface level I thought it was Fashion. Despite where I was in my life or what I thought I was going to be doing, Hip Hop was always with me.
In high school, the yearbook club was my way of capturing a moment and crucial staple in time for me and my classmate and putting it together in a final project for everyone to enjoy. With a combination of a little of themselves but part of an entire movement, the yearbook was my storytelling. No wonder, I was a teenage girl from Jersey City listening to Jersey City mixtapes while still enjoying lyricists and emcees from New York and Jersey. My obsession with G-Unit, especially Lloyd Banks, explains my love for storytelling and why it was important to me.
In college, I realized there was more than just the hits on the radio. There’s a whole world filled with music and artists too talented for radio (if that makes senses). Music that goes beyond mainstream melodies and sonics. Mixtapes, freestyles, Eps. The lists was endless when it came to what you could find and who you could find it by. During this time I started to truly appreciate the greats. Artists filled with passion, dedication, attention to detail. I thought I was going to be the next Anna Wintour not only because I loved fashion, but because I was listening to the equivalent of Anna Wintour in the music world. Digging back and listening to Jay Z’s archive, watching Kanye West create masterpieces while also giving us sunglass with the blinds, seeing J.Cole and Kendrick Lamar perform at school as the world began to see their burgeoning greatness, and stumbling upon a guy from Canada with a project called So Far Gone, an introduction to a new generation of music so true to heart and carefully crafted.
While I love Fashion and it will always have a place in my heart, Hip Hop has always been my first love and it’s time a commit.