Money and hip-hop go hand-in-hand.
But, unfortunately, oftentimes when discussing money and hip-hop it is centered around excessive consumerism. The money seems to go out faster than it can be taken in. But as hip-hop has matured, so too have the conversations about money. As Jay-Z laid out in “The Story of O.J.,” it is not about buying depreciating assets such as expensive cars, it is about investing in property and other appreciating assets.
An extension of this conversation can be heard this coming Wednesday (Nov. 21) at 6 p.m. on KMOJ (89.9 FM) when host Nikki White talks money and hip-hip with A Tribe Called Quest DJ Ali Shaheed Muhammad, MC and educator, Toki Wright and film producer Daniel Bergin. Together the group will discuss how hip-hop can be a catalyst for wealth-building for its audience. White said the conversation is an extension of a Muhammad podcast done at the start of summer here in Minnesota.
“Ali Shaheed Muhammad did a live recording of ‘Microphone Check’ during Soundset (Music Festival) with (Attorney General-elect) Keith Ellison and Brother Ali and it inspired me to revisit this conversation,” said White, who is a vice president of Capital Markets at Wells Fargo. “We want to talk about money in a positive and truthful manner. These three storytellers are going to be talking about powerful opportunities hip-hop has to bring about financial freedom for the hip-hop audience. We want people to really engage in this conversation.”
Together White, Wright and Bergin share an Emmy for the documentary, “Make Money Work: Financial Freedom.” Wright said every hip-hop artist should be financially literate.
“There’s a peace that comes with balancing your creative self and with fulfilling your family’s needs,” said Wright. “There are many differences between artistic expression and paying your bills. You can mix up the two.
He encourages hip-hopers to find multiple streams of income.
“Never get stuck being financially tied to one source of income.” Said Wright.
While Muhammad will be joining the conversation via telephone, he will be making it this way soon. He, along with his new band, The Midnight Hour, will play the Cedar Cultural Center, 416 Cedar Ave., Minneapolis, Dec. 2. The 7:30 p.m. show also features area stalwart Greg Grease.