Guests: James Peterson, Reese Richardson, Ann Powers
The Grammy awards category of “Best Rap Album” was created in 1996, bestowing the previously-marginalized genre some much needed credibility. For this year’s Grammy awards, there are two white artists being nominated for the category of “Best Rap Album.” One is veteran MC Eminem, who has won this award five times, making him the winningest rapper in this category. The other is newcomer Iggy Azalea. The Australian rapper garnered much attention this year, as some African-American artists accused her of cultural and artistic appropriation. In this hour of Radio Times, we talk about the appropriateness of rewarding white rappers with music’s highest honor, and we take a look at the controversy surrounding Iggy Azalea. We’re joined by JAMES PETERSON, director of Africana Studies and associate professor of English at Lehigh University and host of The Remix, a new podcast on WHYY. We’re also joined by local rapper, REESE RICHARDSON, and by NPR music critic ANN POWERS.