Breaking: Rappers Wear Fake Jewelry, and Also Sometimes Dare to Lie About That Fact


The Wall Street Journal reports that bling sales are way down, citing “the recession” and “Internet piracy” as reasons why rappers are increasingly turning to “cubic zirconia, the synthetic diamond stand-in and QVC staple” and other completely fraudulent materials. “The recession is cramping the style of hip-hop artists and wannabes,” apparently. (Although the article also points out that cubic zirconia has a long and storied history around the necks of rappers, as do all sorts of other jewelry frauds — just ask Young Berg.) This is all very ironic, however, because these chains, once seen as signs of hip-hop frivolity, now seem like pretty decent investments: surely the value of Lil Jon’s infamous five pound, 3,756 round-cut white diamond “CRUNK AIN’T DEAD” chain has held up much better over the last year or two than did his 401K. The subtle drift of the piece becomes clear right around the part when we learn that Paul Wall’s “grillz” business has also taken a 60% hit, a blow considerably gentler than the one his album sales took when he released Fast Life earlier this month. I.e., it’s not the artists whose lifestyles are suffering — it’s the ridiculous dudes who started businesses predicated on selling things to rappers who are in dire straights in ’09. Take from an expert: “Your jeweler is a loser.”

Culture of Bling Clangs to Earth as the Recession Melts Rappers’ Ice [Wall Street Journal]