This little blog of ours just turned 5 today. Crazy, ain’t it? When I started this blog, I had no agenda. I simply needed an avenue to share my ideas. It’s great to see that this tiny spot has blossomed into an award-winning resource that people trust and enjoy. Here’s a little nugget of history for you: TRU started as a message board (remember those?) in 2003. I migrated to the blogosphere two years later with zero published clips to my name. It’s probably worth noting that this blog sparked a journey that brought me more career opportunities than I could have ever imagined. I thank you for that.
A Few Changes
As we mark The Rap Up’s 5th anniversary, we also usher in a new era of TRU Nation. While the site’s primary focus is and will always be music coverage, we’ll be rapping up a few other related topics, including sports, style, and culture. In essence, we’ll be examining other facets of our world through the prism of hip-hop. The site has grown into a leading source of information and entertainment for many and we plan to keep it that way for the next 500 years.
It’s a celebration, so help yourself to a refreshing glass of digital Courvoisier below:
Black Barbie: “Today, I have to give my congratulations to Rizoh and TRU for the site’s 5th year anniversary. As a contributing writer and TRU familia member, I can only hope and wish that the site will continue to grow and evolve and last another 50 years, while continuing to smartly, sometimes sarcastically, and always with TRU wit (notice the play on words there?) commentate on hip hop, its culture and the world that it influences. I love my family, I love this site and I am honored to have even just a little part in writing for it and making it what it is — absolutely great.
Jaap: “Congrats Riz. Five years of full activity is a long time in the dog-years of the blogosphere. I stumbled upon TRU years ago, maybe through Google, maybe through another blog, I don’t recall. What I do recall is an instant recognition that here was a guy who knew what he was talking about and who’s judgment could be trusted, a guy who could write with humor in the swamp of internet thuggery that rap blogging sometimes seems like (if everybody claiming the hood online was actually in the ghetto there would probably be no white picket fence left in this world). I kept coming back on a daily basis, often commenting, and I still haven’t stopped that habit to this day.
Somewhere in the second part of those five years Riz opened a spot for guest contributions on the site. I wish to congratulate Rizoh on taking a chance with me since my first post became a big hit for TRU (good call, my man!). As I kept churning out content I got added to the roster as a contributing writer and I wish to thank Rizoh for that. Not only has writing for TRU sharpened my pen game and opened many doors for me, it has also introduced me to fellow bloggers in the Brain Trust who, despite the fact that they live an ocean across from me, I’ve come to consider friends.
So thanks to my TRU BT familia, all the Trubians visiting and commenting and most of all to Rizoh. Through these interwebs I raise a virtual glass to you and toast to five more years of TRU!”
Nahshon: Dre says Happy Birthday, and also “look out for Detox.”
What gift is befitting a 5 year old on his birthday? A copy of DJ Hero for Xbox360? A meet and greet with Justin Bieber? How about an album that could boast legendary status years before it was released? Stay with me. Only 5 short years have passed since the The Rap Up set up shop on your bookmark list. Five years ago, before you could follow your favorite rapper (or blogger) on Twitter, previous to the ENTIRE CAREER of ISouljahBoyTellEm.com, (and at the risk of being repetitive) before the death of Hip-Hop and its announcement by Nas, 10 years after the Raekwon’s original Only Built for Cuban Linx album and a few short months before his announcement of OB4CL2, before Cuban Linx started featuring pictures of my ex-girlfriends to drive site traffic, and before the years passed that made Don Imus or Barack Obama into household names, Rizoh recorded the first keystrokes of the site you now see before you.
These 5 years have seen significant change in hip-hop. Since rappers are winning Grammy’s now and by the accounts of most, the genre that was once pronounced dead has since been revived, one might expect that bloggers across the internet, and even the BlogFather himself would be pleased at the state of the game. This, however, is not the case. The truth is that behind the gruff, dreadlocked exterior, the man behind the curtain is subject to the same weakness as all mere mortals: We just want Detox. As it turns out, what was once considered an “anything east of Texas” bias is actually a personal desire to see the West Coast restored to its rightful place and TheRapUp.net has been touting this message since its inception. (Don’t let me lose you)
What does Rizoh love more than anything? If your answer was “Lists”, you are half correct! (He’s also really into anything that begins with “Social Media” or ends with “traffic”) The first list ever to be featured on this site was entitled “50 Most Influential Hip-Hop Heads” and by being left off of this list, Dr. Dre got what would be the first of many snubs and subliminal jabs on TRU. In five years, the legend of Detox went from being a late album, to an abbreviated way to say “don’t hold your breath”, to a myth, and has now come full circle as we, once again, anxiously await its release (ala DMX). Many don’t know that Dr. Dre is an avid reader of this site, (ever since LA resident and West Coast aficionado Ivan Rott was added to the roster) but 2 weeks ago he announced that in honor of this publication’s 5th year of talking about his project, Aftermath would finally release Detox.
He also sent me the first copy of “Under Pressure” ft. Jay-Z to commemorate The Rap Up’s big day!
What words can I offer that would compare with a nod from the Doc? Congratulations to Riz and the TRUbians who have been annoying me in comment sections since I started reading the site in late 2005.