Hip Hop Psych…

Although not exactly classified as hip hop the song “Happy” by Pharrell Williams is being cited by researchers as having possible use in therapy for patients with mental illness. hip hop soloHip-hop is rooted in rap which was first introduced in the 1970’s. It has now grown to become a major cultural and commercial powerhouse. The success of the play “Hamilton” is an indication of how it has weaved itself into our culture and how it is now being accepted by so many diverse audiences. In the United Kingdom researches have found that it can have a major impact in the treatment of Mental illnesses such as schizophrenia and depression.  The treatment is now being referred to as Hip hop psych. Hip hop is rich in references to psychiatric illnesses, drug abuse, domestic violence and poverty which is linked to severe cases of mental illnesses. This in turn hits a familiar note with troubled youths who are trying to deal with society and are unsuccessful at it. Most of what we have come to associate rapper’s lyrics with is cursing, seeking money and exploitation of women but there are also rappers who are are describing the harsh realities of society and even suggesting coping mechanisms for young people to deal with these in a positive way. Therapy consists of encouraging troubled youths to write and rap what they are feeling and where the see themselves in the future as being a positive force in society. This has led to the creation of the national campaign “hip hop forHip hop dancing mental health” who main message is to help troubled youths “beat the blues with positive mental health tunes. The goal is to encourage rappers, charities and medical groups to explore more deeply the true potential of hip hop. Through the use of rap it now believed that we can possibly reverse the effects of destructive parental mistreatment and the absence of strong role models with a path that is comfortable and familiar to these younger adults.