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Chuck D’s South African Tirade

On tour with Public Enemy in Cape Town, South Africa, 50-year-old rap music pioneer Chuck D let loose recently via an email to’s Chuck Creekmur and Davey D. With his permission, the email was reprinted today on the website and it’s well worth reading.

The basic gist of D’s rant is that the U.S. has allowed rampant commercialism to supplant art form originality. He writes:

The world has parity now and has surpassed the USA in ALL of the basic fundamentals of HIP-HOP – TURNTABLISM, BREAKING, GRAFFITI, and now EMCEEING… The “arrogant” American comes in blackface, but if there was a HIP-HOP or Rap Olympics, I really don’t think the United States would get Gold, Silver or Brass or even ass for that sake.

What?! No ass for the U.S. at the Rap Olympics? Them’s fightin’ words, D. He goes on to decry the content of most rap music news websites, the ghetto slant of mainstream media attention and suggests that the great majority of his rich rap successors are allowing themselves to be pimped out by white lawyers in New York and LA.

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