I take two kicks

Dear reader,

In the past, my friends will tell you – especially one friend who I debate this with constantly…Scott(:P) – that I’ve been known to be a little more than harsh on hip-hop and rap.

I like a lot of things other white people like in the rap world: Anticon; indie-rock/rap crossovers from people with friendly beards; and even a little Public Enemy; but no, you’d never see me wearing a clock round my neck or using the words ‘nigga’, ‘bitches’, ‘wagwan’, ‘brrrrap brrap’ or other somesuch stuffs without playful irony.

This isn’t only because some of those words are offensive but also because I don’t like a lot of modern rap – I hear JayZ and I think lazy; I don’t think that Kanye West is anyone’s ‘voice’ but his; and let’s not get started on the late 90s where only the Wu-Tang seemed to know how to make interesting ‘urban music’. [Ok, ok, so I used to like Limp Bizkit…but I was a teenager, come on. Do you still own those baggy trousers? Do you? Ok, would you wear them on a night out? No. Didn’t think so.] As Heidegger is so fond of saying:

And yet!

Today, my little white world of player-hating was blown away by a man named Kool Keith.

What drew me in was Tom Waits but while waiting for Mr. Waits’ gravelly crimes to come to the fore, I noticed that Mr Kool Keith has a very interesting vernacular and a most gracious cadence! T’was a most pleasing spectacle also!



One thought on “I take two kicks

  1. It’s a very difficult line to draw. Generally, for me, if it is British and from 1994-2004, I will give it a listen. But ‘genre’ is an endless source of lazy bullshit – what counts for hip hop? If Tricky, The Roots, Urban Species fit into this genre (and it could be very easily argued that they do, no matter how much a predominantly white music journalistic pidgeonholing tradition creats new ‘subgenres’ for them), then I am quite a big fan of hip hop.

    As with any genre, those who shout the loudest are those which should be ignored. I spent my teenage years despising Dre, Snoop Dogg and Eminem, and I still don’t think I was wrong for doing so. I don’t accept my sisters argument that yu can separate lyrical content from musical appreciation in rap music (the lyrics and flow of words are the definition of the genre, surely?) and find a huge majority of US hip hop lazy in the extreme, identi-kit pressings aimed squarely at the white teen girl audience although dressed up in misogyny and embarrassing, oiled pec machismo.

    (mainstream) American hip hop has an inability to laugh at itself. This inability produced Tim Westwood, which in turn produced Ali G – a joke which the butt’s didn’t get, at the time.

    I have heard of Kool Keith. I’ll check him out.

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