An occasional feature in which esteemed D.C. rapper Head-Roc shares what’s on his mind.

On Facebook, I’ve been in a somewhat intense discussion with D.C. luminary DJ RBI, of WPFW’s Monday night “Ill Street Grooves” show, about the support D.C. hip-hop music veterans and superstars receive from the DMV’s club and on-air-DJ community.

I plaster my personal Head-Roc FB wall with my opinions from time to time, and what I have been saying about how there are too many outsider and opportunists in control of our music scene has gotten a fair bit of attention. In particular, what caught my brother RBI’s eye was the following post:

Way too many bamas in control of our music scene. Cats aint promoting dc hip-hop right.

Selling us out by giving preference and deference to wack shit.

RBI responded with a position and suggestion that I use my influence to promote a mixtape, in which I would feature D.C. hip-hop that I think should be better promoted to local consumers. I think his is a good suggestion. That said…

My counter-argument is that it’s the  local DJs in positions of power and influence who should do just what he is suggesting that I do: put out a mixtape of D.C. hip-hop’s best and brightest. To put it mildly, we are still involved in the discussion.

But something has come out of our discussions that I want to share with the D.C. music community. Also with his response, DJ RBI put together a suggested list of D.C. hip-hop powerhouses to be featured on the mixtape he suggested I produce. It’s a list that I cannot argue with one bit—-except to say that I wish he, being a monster of a DJ and 20-year fixture on the scene, would go ahead and put together the project. I certainly would back the effort 100 percent.

So, the following represent Chocolate City’s finest in the art of rhythm and rhyme. I highly recommend, if you love or are interested in experiencing the real flavor of D.C., Maryland, and Virgina hip-hop, that you spend some time looking each of these artists up online. Most have Facebook, MySpace, Reverb Nation, or their own websites. If they have product for sale, purchase it so they can eat from the fruit of their labor. If they have a mailing list, sign up to keep abreast of their activities. If they have shows, go see them rock the house live and direct.

The list, as compiled by DJ RBI and fully endorsed by Yours Truly is as follows:

  • Gods’Illa
  • Asheru
  • PoemCees
  • The Package
  • Pro’Verb
  • K-Beta
  • Diamond District
  • Kokayi
  • Dirty Water
  • Lyriciss
  • Enoch 7th Prophet
  • Ra The MC
  • Hueman Prophets
  • Laelo Hood

Take note how, in this first draft, no artist or groups that are commercially considered the ones hip-hop lovers need to check for, are listed.

Now, who in our D.C. hip-hop community do you think is worthy of energy and economic patronage to help them continue to create their art? Who would you add to this list?