Jermaine Dupri’s been making hits and superstars since the early 90s when you couldn’t escape hearing his voice on a record dropping the infamous “So So Def” tag. When the music mogul talks you listen. After sitting down with him here in New York City yesterday, we learned how his feelings on how the Grammys recognize hip-hop and R&B are too (un)politically correct for Twitter.
It’s not a new concept that many hip-hop and R&B artists feel slighted by the Recording Academy. JD thought the Grammys was a bit more inclusive this year with the performers, but he thinks (and has thought this forever) the board doesn’t necessarily have their ear to the urban music streets. “It’s interesting to me that the Grammys don’t really pay attention to culture,” he told us. “It’s always been like that. I definitely believe they [hip-hop and R&B categories] should be more televised because it’s very important.” Although he feels the presence this year was more than ever before, for example he points to Miguel and Wiz Kahlifa’s “Adorn” performance, it’s still not enough. For that reason he became president of the Atlanta chapter.
“One of my reasons for being on there and being president and trying to get on the floor of the board was to make sure our music is heard,” he said. “A lot of people don’t understand that the reason why majority of the records we love don’t win is because it’s not really on the board to vote.”
We just want to know who we can question about Nas not winning one Grammy. We’re just saying. The Grammys may not pay attention to culture but music connoisseurs do, and people are pretty geeked about JD’s February 23rd So So Def 20th anniversary concert. Every former So So Def artist from Xscape to Kris Kross to Bow Wow to Jagged Edge will come together for a trip down the “Jump” and “Just Kick It” memory lane. Check back for more of our conversation with JD on working with Usher, his new artist Leah Labelle and Mariah Carey being the only artist to dominate both pop and urban charts.
[Photo: Getty Images]