Radical rapper and activist Paris (famous for such hard-hitting albums as The Devil Made Me Do It and Sonic Jihad) has entered talks with Boost Mobile to sponsor his upcoming Hard Truth Soldiers Tour, featuring dead prez, Immortal Technique, Talib Kweli, Kam, Pete Rock, Planet Asia, T-K.A.S.H., The Conscious Daughters, Uno the Prophet, Jasiri X, NYOil, Sellassie, and other edutainment-oriented performers. Paris, who was one of the first hip-hop artists to put elaborate 9-11 conspiracy theories into his music, launched his Guerrilla Funk label back in 2003, as both a record company and an organization of sorts — the “Thought Box” on his web site includes articles that criticize Fox News, Clear Channel, and the prison industrial complex. He’s spent his whole career attacking corporations. Now he’s decided to team up with one.
Apparently, the rapper-turned CEO hasn’t fared too well in the current economic downturn, especially given the declining popularity of “socially aware” hip-hop. Thus, Paris is now a patsy for Sprint CEO Dan Hesse, a guy who earned $14.2 million in 2008 even though his company lost $1.6 billion in the last quarter when it tried to sell a $50/month text messaging service that doesn’t work. “Corporate sponsorship will provide us the means to more comfortably take on this tour in this economic climate,” Paris said in a press release issued today. Fair enough. But with all that said, what audience does the rapper now plan to target? Maybe he needs to write a rap song to fulminate against himself.