SLUMERICAN: The Sub-cultural Influence and Celebration of the Gutter

Ashley Rose-Nova

Slumerican can be described as the struggle of man and women born in the slums. The celebration of the gutter. It deals with addiction, love, heartbreak, poverty, and the American struggle. The flag that is worn, represented, and shown around the south or around the world is Slumerican. Displaying the four bolts and the stars for every letter of the word. Like the bolts of a skateboard, it represents the foundations and strength of Slumerican.

Not just a name or saying. It is an influential word to best describe you as a person living through a struggle from the bottom. When living through my own personal struggle I learned about myself and life. Finding that people who choose to wear and acknowledge the Slumerican flag, stopped apologizing for who they were in society and what they liked. Finding that they refused to apologize for their wild and live life to their fullest. Learning that true freedom comes at a cost of true rebellion. Welcome to the American dream. The dream that is not what your forefathers dreamt of.

Originally, Yelawolf did not intend for Slumerican to become a culture or influence on anyone. It was a word that he used to best describe him as a person and as an individual. The rapper, singer, songwriter, and business owner had been through several struggles in life. Yelawolf born as Michael Wayne Atha signed a deal with Shady Records in 2011. Releasing Radioactive after his mix-tape Trunk Muzik. The sequel to Trunk Muzik titled Trunk Muzik Returns was released on March 14, 2013. Later came Love Story, Trial by Fire, and Trunk Muzik III.

The sixth album Ghetto Cowboy became Yelawolf’s first independent album on October 31,2019.

Ghetto Cowboy and Trunk Muzik III became the mild stones for Slumerican. Ghetto Cowboy is an album that stands on its own and takes the listener to the roots of Yelawolf. The album highlights the rural of today’s America which includes poverty, addiction, alcohol abuse, and self-loathing.

” I keep that bottom ’cause I know where I came from
Still Slum.” – Trailer Park Hollywood

It is hard for me to disagree with what album in Wolf’s career is superior to the others. Each album represents and stands out for the time that it was created. Ghetto Cowboy and Trunk Muzik III speaks to the hearts and lives of the Slumerican family’s struggles. They are the lyrical musical tale that is equivalent to any literature that is important in someone’s life.

To understand the lifestyle Crackle released a 10-part documentary series that follows Yelawolf across America. This series allows the viewer to experience the people that surrounds and associate themselves with the Slumerican culture. It is more than just hip hop; it is a small glimpse of inspiration and brilliance that allows you to visualize the source of Yelawolf’s musical inspirational storytelling. Slumerican Life on Crackle is beyond magnificent. If you are unfamiliar with the unique style of an outsider, it is a docu-series to see.

It is inspirational by showing you are as strong based on the people you surround yourself with. Showing that if someone stands behind you, protect them or if someone stands besides you respect them. Living through current days society shows how strong an individual can be. There are horrible things in this world, but it is up to an individual to be relentless in a time of struggle.

“I run things, see, things don’t run me.”– We Slum

The collective sounds that are influenced by hip-hop, rock, and outlaw country music.

“Hip-hop is my lane and rock and roll is my attitude
I stay country fresh.”

Photo Credit: Slumeircan | Yelawolf

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