Occasionally while driving I will tune into the Australian Government Youth broadcaster Triple J (affectionately known as 'Triple K, or just KKK'). Founded as a cultural project to promote local Australian music, Triple K has recently taken a turn to the exotic and now plays mainstream gangsta rap from the UK and US. When I last tuned in about a week ago, an odd-sounding off-key negress shouted at me behind an out-of-key synth bass progression "Where are you know/'Cause I can't see ya / Where are you now? / I wouldn't want to be ya" followed by further smug taunts and cackles.

Rather than just skip to the next station or turn it off, I sensed that this was another STIHIE (so this is how it ends) moment for our race and civilisation and allowed myself to be verbally assaulted for a full two minutes by this uppity African woman. We do this kind of thing so that you don't have to.

The premise of the song is that the speaker has usurped the role of another female, presumably also an Afro-Carribean, as the 'alpha' female in a social network, who has since refrained from appearing at events and venues frequented by this group. The new 'alpha' female, self-titled 'Lady Leshurr' taunts and mocks her predecessor, demanding to know "where are you now?" whilst aggressively pumping her chest, arms and making mean facial expressions. In the second verse, our lady gives a brief history of how she claimed her ladyship, and even captured the attention of her adversary's mate:

Look, you was on top Then you just flopped
You thought you was gonna blow up
You was gassed, got popped
Look, you're so late, with it
I said you're so late widit
I'm on top and you're hating it
And you look like 86 years old
I get paid to spit
Heard your stuff, ain't rating it
Wait
Your boyfriend was staring me down
Now he's on my phone like "where are you now?

Channelling the Shoah itself, Lady Leshurr pulls no punches in detailing the extent of her enemy's fall from the "top spot". It is not entirely surprising that the "new British" hailing from their former colonial possessions have brought with them tribal customs, not limited to promiscuity, violence, fatherlessness and fierce competition for status and mates. I struggled to think of examples in more traditionally British art, music or theatre that could speak with such primal energy as displayed by our Lady Leshurr.

Not to be outdone, no grim song is complete without a 'feat.' from a male counterpart, who kindly gives us an elevator pitch of his credit in a few tidy lines.

Any time I speak, that's doodoodoodadada Any time I speak, that's tiger, tiger
Done with the shoulda, coulda, doodoodoodoodadada
Wiley, I'm getting them hyper hyper
Doing this ting since MC Creepin'
Doing this ting ever since Pied Piper
And I know mandem in jail doing 5, doing 10s
Doing 15s and I know lifers

After the rhythm is established with a series of verbal fillers, the subject tells us that he has a long history of being a rapper, and that he knows personally men who have been convicted of offences and are serving lengthy prison sentences. For the uninitiated, this is information that signifies that the subject himself is a dangerous man by association, serving as a threat to would be usurpers of his own highly-coveted spot in the pack. In this newly-invigorated and enriched British tradition, one does not big note oneself by claims to membership of a noble house or distinguished bloodline. Social rank can be maintained or improved if one is known to the most violent and unrepentant prisoners.

The extreme levels of insecurity displayed by both of the respective 'alphas' in Afro-British communities is illustrative of just how hard they have worked to get to where they are, and the racism that plagues British society.

I realised after some deeper reflection that my instinctual revulsion at the threats of violence, jeering, 'trash-talking' and gloating at anothers' supposed misfortune was yet another byproduct of the internalisation of eurocentric, racist and preconceived notions of polite, ethical and adult behaviour. Whites have been kept so uptight by their oppression of others that they must have invented these antiquated social norms as a form of collective self-deception, blinding ourselves to the plight of the oppressed whilst all the while tricking ourselves into thinking we are the ethical ones.

AUTHOR

COMMENTS

Tag Cloud