Part Two: The White Rap Movement

However, Bob Dole says, "Bob Dole still thinks Big Pun's song, ‘It's So Hard' has a darn good beat." R.I.P. Y. Peter Kang is a senior majoring in Asian American studies. Send comments to [email protected]





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Last week we discussed how white people seem to enjoy listening to music created by black people.

With the explosion of hip-hop into mainstream culture in the late 1990s, the new millennium will certainly see a number of white rappers like Eminem emerging in the hip-hop scene.

But before we discuss this further, we should go over the history of whites in the rap scene.

Beastie Boys - the original white rap group, these three Jewish kids from New York exploded during the 1980s. But one really can't consider the Beasties true hip-hop. They have punk rock roots and their crossover style eliminates them from our discussion. (Name one other rap group getting major airplay on the alternative Live 105).

But the Beastie Boys were the forerunners for other Jewish acts like 3rd Bass. MC Serch was a yeshiva kid who made good with his tight rhymes. 3rd Bass is generally considered as one of the only white rap groups respected in the hip-hop scene. Other Jewish rappers include novelty groups hyping up their Jewishness with a style they refer to as "Hebe-Hop." This includes the Two Live Jews with their 1990 album "As Kosher as They Wanna Be" and Members of the Tribe, which consists of two members, Dr. Dreidel and Ice Berg. (These guys are real, I swear.)

Vanilla Ice - His debut, "To the Extreme," sold more than 13 million copies worldwide, and "Ice Ice Baby" was a No. 1 hit on the charts. Like a poisonous mushroom, Ice was deadly - deadly stinky.

Snow - With his dancehall roots, Snow's music was described by his fans as hip-hop combined with a "fun Jamaican accent." Ugh ... And stay out!

Will Smith - Wait a second, Smith isn't white. But geez, he sucks anyway. Get jiggy with it! Argh, he stinks! Why has Smith won four Grammys? Because he appealed to the mainstream audience, that's why. Those who are in the voting membership for the Grammys could really relate to Smith's brand of crap-hop:

"Yeah, parents really don't understand! That is so true, Bob. I'm voting for Will Smith. This young man is 'dropping knowledge.' Is that the correct term these days, Bob?"

I hate you Will Smith!

Eminem - Here is one white kid who truly has skills. He's actually one of the freshest acts to hit hip-hop since Will Smith. Just kidding.

I have to admit, I didn't really like Eminem at first; was this my subconscious telling me he wasn't "legit" because he was white? Or was it his annoying voice? In any case, after listening to him for awhile, I realized that the boy has skill, and a distinct style that is uniquely his own.

But one tends to wonder how Eminem won two Emmys this year, including Best Rap Album. I mean, he's good, but I can think of at least five albums that were more deserving of the award. Is it a coincidence that he's the newest white rapper and he won the award? You decide.

Today, we have a bunch of crossover acts that are further blurring the lines of what is hip-hop and what isn't. Groups like Rage Against the Machine (O.G. of the genre; love their work), Korn, Kid Rock, and Limp Bizkit are crossing over. Bizkit frontman Fred Durst is one of the worst rappers I've ever heard in my life, but I see skilled rappers like Method Man and Eminem teaming up with Limp Bizkit. Why? Money.

Douglas Century, author of "Street Kingdom: Five Years Inside the Franklin Avenue Posse," predicts that white acts will eventually dominate rap. "It's possible that in 15 years all hip-hop will be white."

Whites taking over rap? Doesn't seem likely, but hmm, I guess I can see that. America's favorite pop sensation, Hanson, in their hit song "MMMBop," utilized deejay scratching. I think just that one example is enough to make today's hip-hop artists disgusted to the point that they will want to leave hip-hop.

It starts with Hanson, and the trickle-down effect will make its way into other music genres, and pretty soon, everyone will be biting the hip-hop style. Perhaps country music artists, in an effort to recover from a decline in record sales, will attempt to "urbanize" to appeal to a wider audience.

Here are some of my predictions for the new millennium:

• Garth Brooks will form the Garth Brooks Posse featuring the Mullet Mafia (led by Billy Ray Cyrus).

• LeAnn Rimes will adopt a new nickname and be known as LeAnn "Busta" Rimes.

Other genres will follow suit...

• Michael Bolton will be known as Ol' Dirty Bolton.

• Kenny G will be known as, uh, Kenny G.

• Ricky Martin will be known as Ricky Martin the Gay Pirate, or Pirate for short.

But not everyone is susceptible to the lure of hip-hop. Bob Dole, a spokesperson for Viagra, is no longer endorsing Limp Bizkit and is now down with heavy metal acts Tool and Helmet.

Good ol' Bob Dole, keepin' it real.

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