Archive for April, 2011

Arab Rappers in Solidarity

April 22, 2011 3 comments

Great new piece by raptivist and scholar Aisha Fukushima on New America Media:

Arab Rappers in Solidarity With Uprisings in Middle East & North Africa

 Arab Rappers in Solidarity With Uprisings in Middle East & North Africa

New America Media, News Report, Aisha Fukushima, Posted: Apr 16, 2011

Many prominent Arab hip-hop artists inspired by uprisings in the Middle East and North Africa have released music in solidarity with protesters in the region. Though the messages of these new songs are not necessarily new to Arab hip-hop, the urgency and relevance of this new music has gained these artists increasing international attention.While Arab hip-hop started to gain its recognition in the ‘90s, tracing back the history can be difficult in light of the fact that it stems from such a complex fusion of diasporic communities, people, art and culture. In North America, for instance, artists such as Fredwreck and The Narcicyst are cited as pioneers of Arab hip-hop, while groups such as DAM are credited with jump-starting the movement in Palestine.In a conversation with Excentrik, an East Bay music producer, “actionist” (action activist and oud player), he explained, “Yeah, there’s an Arab hip-hop scene, but it’s a global scene, it’s not like a localized scene. Unfortunately, there’s not enough cats doing quality shit that have like a [single] place to go in any of these cities… It’s an esoteric scene, it’s random because it’s so big and so spread apart.” While there are certainly active indigenous Arab hip-hop scenes throughout much of North Africa and the Middle East, the majority of the most celebrated emcees in the global scene are based in North America and Europe, where hip-hop has had a longer history and faces less challenges in terms of censorship.

Jihadi rap is whack

April 6, 2011 Leave a comment
Apr. 11, 2011  
A big h/t to Wired for bringing our attention to the story of Alabama native Omar Hammami, aka Abu Mansoor al-Amriki, a jihadi rapper who has released two new hip-hop tracks refuting rumorsof his death:

In one of the tracks — “Send Me a Cruise” (.mp3), as in cruise missile — Hammami portrays himself as a sort of jihadist Tupac: distantly aware of a grim fate that awaits him, but fearless nonetheless. “There’s nothing as sweet as the taste of a tank shell,” he tells listeners.

It’s a tough image to pull off, though. He sounds more like Somalia’s Vanilla Ice, mumbling his way through hokey lyrics with too many syllables inartfullly crammed into too few beats. Using lines like “Or better yet send me a cruise, and send me on a cruise” to express his hope for a cruise missile-aided “martyrdom” don’t help his reputation as a lyricist, either.

Click here to listen

Meet the Tupac Shakur of Jihadi Islamists

Read more…

Categories: Islamist Rap, Somalia