Don’t Blame Hip Hop for Molly, We Got it from the Ravers

The party drug Molly is all over hip hop. But commentator and rap artist Cola says the party drug did not come from hip hop culture, but rather seeped in from the mixing with other genres.

Who is Molly? And how did she get famous so quickly? Well, Molly's real name is MDMA (3,4-methylenedioxy-N-methylamphetamine) and is the active ingredient of the popular party drug Ecstacy, and gives the user a euphoric and carefree vibe when consumed. People have been getting high off of her for a while, but lately people just can't stop talking about her, particularly in the hip hop industry. Molly's latest buzz came around a line that Rick Ross used in a song, which some have taken as Ross referring to Molly as a date rape drug, "Molly all in her champagne, she ain't even know it / I took her home and enjoyed that, she ain't even know it.”

And though critics of hip hop point to Molly as another example of why hip hop is corrupting youth, ironically, it may very well be hip hop’s expansion into other musical genres that has brought the drug into it’s scene. Hip hop -- being a culture that is based on new trends, new ideas, and being hip -- has simply adopted Molly usage from the rave culture.

Today, it's rare to hear a rap song on mainstream radio that doesn’t have at least one Molly reference. For example, Trinidad Jame$, "Popped a Molly, I'm sweatin’ wooh!" Kanye West, "She gone off that Molly," and more. And what makes this even more ironic, is that in hip hop, it has never been cool to be a druggie. It was looked down upon to use any substances other than alcohol, weed, or lean (prescription cough syrup). In fact, most rap artists have talked about being on the other side of drug sales, as the dealer, taken advantage of the weaker consumer. Like when Nas says in 1994 classic Illmatic album, "…laughing at baseheads trying to sell some broken amps."

I can recall from 06-09, being involved in the game, Ecstasy was a popular and profitable hustle. It was a much more underground culture back then, between ravers, party kinds, and people still riding out the end of the hyphy movement. Today, Molly is probably one of the most common hustles because everybody wants it. Even though I'm not in the game anymore, I still get people hitting me up for it.

Since that period though, people I knew that didn't even smoke weed have picked up a Molly habit. Molly has become so popular in the party scene that it's the next common thing beside alcohol if you're trying to turn up. Weed can mellow you out and make you think, molly makes you feel up, and that's what attracts party people. One of the biggest hip hop shows I’ve been to so far this year, I was offered molly at least five times.

Molly isn't a new thing though on the music scene. It's been around long before hip hop proclaimed it as the mascot for party culture. The Molly business has been thriving for decades in the underground rave scene. And as hip hop and rave music is blending, so to is the habits of the scenes.

Over the past couple years mainstream rap has been heavily influenced by EDM (electronic dance music) i.e. techno, house, and dubstep. Drug use has always played a huge part in the dance music scene. At raves Ecstasy, Cocaine, Marijuana, LSD, and GHB are common and from my experience, the majority of people at raves are usually on at least one of these drugs. I think that the new rap/EDM sound on the radio has introduced fans of both genres to each other's cultures.

This being said, at one time if you popped a Molly or were on any drug in the club you would most likely not be open about it, but now it has become more accepted.

As much fun as molly is made out to be, it is also important to be careful with the substance. MDMA is a man made chemical, unlike Marijuana, and can affect the body in unnatural ways. Although death and addiction are rarely associated with ecstasy and molly, it can still be dangerous. MDMA can increase one's heart rate and if mixed with other substances can be harmful and potentially lead to death. I'm not a doctor, but I'm speaking on things I've seen. I've seen people collapse in crowded concerts, I know someone who spent a few days in the hospital after popping 15 Ecstasy pills, and I know a lot of people who are not the same from popping too much ecstasy. And if what people are making this Rick Ross line out to be is true, then it is also used as a date rape drug.

Hip hop has seen this phenomenon before – a party drug becoming popularized, and the impact of the usage is only understood til some time later. During the height of the hyphy movement, a lot of ecstasy pills were popped and it's safe to say a lot of people are dumber than they once were. Ecstasy is typically cut with all sorts of other substances making it more dangerous than MDMA, but molly can still be cut and since it's recent growth in usage cut molly has become more prevalent.

The bottom line is, this Molly fad didn't just appear out of thin air. It’s presence in hip hop will fade out, just as it creeped in, and eventually become just a phase. But Molly has made it's mark, and it, or some version of it, will forever be a part of the party culture.


About Anthony "Cola" Mastrocola

Anthony Mastrocola is a San Jose based recording artist, and a member of the rap duo Metafizix. Listen to his latest project from the "Underdog" Series by going to his audio listening page.

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But Molly has made it's mark, and it, or some version of it, will forever be a part of the party culture.

Molly is not an IT. She is a lady, and deserves to be treated as such.


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