It's been three years since Lupe Fiasco dropped his last album. In today's hip hop world that's an eternity
Lupe's fans are ready to rise up and revolt against his label, Atlantic Records
On October 15 fans will be outside of Atlantic's headquarters protesting and demanding Lupe's long awaited 'Lasers
' album finally be released according to the Village Voice
17 year old Mathew La Corte
is the organizer of the protest dubbed Fiasco Friday
. He and a lot of other fans are simply fed up with Atlantic holding Lupe's album hostage with no release date in sight.
La Corte has amassed 29,000 signatures
on a petition, there's also a Facebook group with 900 members
. He talked to Village Voice about how this all started.
"Well, three years ago Lupe came out and said that he was going to do a new album. And we were kind of waiting around for things to happen. Then Lupe started to release some information about how the album was finished, the album was done, and he gave it into his record label Atlantic and nothing was happening. It was in their hands and he couldn't do anything. So we continued to wait. And then there was a petition that was started, and people started to spread that around, and now I think we're at 29,000 signatures. But we gave that in to Atlantic this summer and what happened was they tweeted that it was coming; that was all they were saying. They refused to give us any official information about why it hasn't been released. And I think many of us feel personally disrespected that they really have blatantly just been completely silent on this issue--that's basically what started this whole thing.
When asked why pick Lupe out of hundreds or rappers who get their albums shelved every year, La Corte had this to say.
"Personally I feel that Lupe Fiasco is a completely different breed of rapper. There are a lot of other types of rappers and what we really wanted to focus on was not talking about other rappers and what they do and naming names, but focusing on Lupe and his positive message and the things he talks about in his songs. It's also what he does outside the record booth and all the things he does for charity. He just climbed Mount Kilimanjaro last year for charity. He just donated coats for a children's charity. He's a rapper but he's also a social advocate, he's a political activist. He does things that really break the mold of that traditional rapper, and I think that's what draws a lot of people to his music is that here's a guy who is really talking about some of the most major issues that a lot of people feel, and that's why a lot of people can relate to him. Because we all, as the youth and even as older people, we have thoughts about what's going on, what's happening around us and we want to express those thoughts.
And people have said, "Oh, there are so many other reasons you could be protesting. Why are you protesting Lupe Fiasco?" I think that it's important that we get behind one person who's going put out information and ideas that other rappers aren't. That's a major portion of why we're doing this in the first place. Why is Atlantic not putting out this record? You can see right now how strong of a fanbase he has. Is the issue that it's not commercial? You're not going to hear a Lupe Fiasco songs on many radio stations. Are you gonna be able to get that money as the Atlantic Music Corporation from radio play? It's not gonna happen. So what idea is Atlantic Records putting out? That it's okay to bring our children up with this music that's all about me going out and partying tonight? Is that really what we're all looking for? I mean, rap and music and creative expression has forever been used to reflect the society, and what's going on in the world right now. I think there's a lot of other things that rappers can be expressing, and the things that are on the radio are really do not reflect what this society is all about. And I think that's why there's so much push behind Lupe, because he's really much more than just a rapper from Chicago. He represents a generation, and a movement.
It's good to see fans actually doing something instead of sitting in front of their computers b*tching and whining. Whether it will make a difference remains to be seen.