Monday, 10 November 2008

P Brothers Slam UK Hip Hop

"UK Hip Hop is wack. It's just corny people on the scene... In my opinion it's just rubbish. People are just lost and confused following fashion and trends".

So go the words of Paul S, one half of Nottingham's P Brothers. Which might explain why their latest LP 'The Gas' doesn't feature any UK talent at all - it doesn't exist. Oh, apart from it does feature UK production, by themselves, the P Brothers.

But, they were asked 'What do you think of the UK scene then?'. They are blatantly no longer part of the UK scene and it can stay that way. They can keep their generically-named US rappers. Sure they've put in some good work here over the years, especially with Cappo and Scor-Zay-Zee, but by making sweeping statements seemingly indicative of ignorance they include Cappo and Scorz in the 'just corny people'.

People are entitled to their opinion of course, and this is just mine, but it's sad when there is so much about our scene to be proud of. Obviously there is a sector of our scene that could be described the way Paul S dubs the entire scene, but you can't tar everyone with same brush. It does throw up questions about who represents our scene in the media and what instigates stereotypical views like those of Paul S.

This thought leads us conveniently, though breifly, onto one of the main stories in our music's community: Dizzee Rascal's appearance on BBC Newsnight with Jeremy Paxman. Lots of people, including fans and the press, are disappointed that Dizzee was chosen as a spokesperson for the young and black, and more generally, for Hip Hop.

Dizzee was undeniably inarticulate, although admittedly funny. There are other obvious representatives, Lewis Hamilton for example, whom the BBC could have called upon. But let's remember, despite trying to be 'cool' and 'down wid da kids', the BBC are out of touch whilst trying desperately to be in touch.

It's not Dizzee's music that give people negative views on UK Hip Hop or Grime but he helps to make my point. Certain people are thrust into the limelight for whatever reason and this is what people see. And people form opinions based on what they see.

For example, the current Hip Hop top 10 on itunes displays N Dubz at number 8. The highest charting UK entry is N Dubz! Hardly a representative of our scene. Now I'm not suggesting that this is the basis of the views of Paul S, but it's representative of what happens. If more people were buying Sir Smurf Lil's new LP or say, Styly C and Cappo's EP then they might be the ones who champion our scene. But for whatever reason (their fans want vinyl or at least CD/their fans are too tight to actually buy stuff anyway and just download it off forums) this isn't the case and so, negative, ill-informed views are made.

Like I said, Paul S can have his opinion and I am entitled to mine. For all I know he might listen to everything that comes out of the UK and still think that but in my blinkered world of UK Rap I can't see that that is actually the case!


nofrillz said...

if he is listening to a vast spectrum of uk hip hop & making that statement then quite frankly i think he a couple of sandwiches short. if he isn't listening to the right mc's then i cant believe someone of his standing doesn't know who to look out for. if thats the case then he should stick to us mc's. both sides will be better off that way

Elijah said...

grime is better

TJ Chill (ZULU NATION) said...

I presented the Zulu Nation Rap Show on Itch FM for 4 years. Since Itch went down in Jan 08 I've been on legal station, the newly named BANG Radio until recently known as Life FM.

Having been part of the Hip Hop scene since it began in the UK I used to hate the term UK Hip Hop as it was never comparable in terms of music quality, to what was coming out of the states.

However, being in the position that I am in, as a legal radio dj, I get lots of new material being sent to me and I can honestly say that there is some very exciting talent about at the moment.

It has grown out of workshops to keep kids off the streets and money going to encourage talent from charities such as the Prince's Trust. As well as people leaving the Grime scene and moving over to Hip Hop.

The forthcoming wave of artists include the likes of Reain, Riddler, Swift It Major, M9, Triple Darkness, First and Last, Skibadee, The Thundercats and Ironbraydz just to name a few.

These new cats don't know anything or care about past wack UK acts. They are bringing some new fire with their innocence.

P Brothers are BIG talent that I've been playing since Itch FM days. I hope that they don't step just as things are about to get interesting!

Want to check it for yourself: check the Zulu Nation Rap Show with TJ Chill. Representing UK and Tru Skool Hip Hop on BANG Radio 103.6FM NW London or live online at Mondays 10pm - midnight. Also podcasted at (set up by the DJs of Itch FM).

I've seen what's on its way...and it's looking good!

Keep the faith...!