Unit 18 Dutch Rap

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INTRODUCTION

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9 10 11 12 13

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ARTISTS

BULLETIN BOARD

COURSE INFO

GLOSSARY

IMAGES

LINKS

PERSPECTIVES

SONGS

TIMELINE

URAP

RAP MUSIC HOME



ANY PROBLEMS?

"I always wanted to sound like KRS-One because he is straight up knowledge.
Then I said this is his thing and I need to get my own thing. That’s when I 
started rapping in my own native language, which is Suriname.  That’s how I 
developed my own style." MC Srarang
UNIT 18 OBJECTIVE: How has hip-hop influenced new 
expressions in Dutch culture and music?
LECTURE TOPICS:
INTRODUCTION
HISTORICAL CONTEXT
SURINAME HIP-HOP PIONEER: MC SRARANG
DUTCH HIP-HOP PIONEER: DEF P
HIP-HOP IN DUTCH CULTURE: PROCESSES OF PRODUCTION
Phase I (Imitition)
Phase II (Reinterpretation)
Phase III (Transformation)
RECORDINGS OF OTHER DUTCH HIP-HOP GROUPS
 
Key Terms
boasting
diaspora
doin' the dozens
dub
hip-hop
rap
signifying
storytelling
toasting
'verbal riddims'
  
INTRODUCTION
Hip-hop is an expression of rebellion by youth against the norms of society.
Through hip-hop, non-African American youth throughout the world have
created unique sub-cultures marked by the construction of identities that
embody their ideals, values, worldviews, and traditions. In the process,
hip-hop has acquired new identities, meanings, and functions. Hip-hop in the
Netherlands provides a case study to examine this phenomenon in global spaces.

The Netherlands is located in the northeast of Europe and is surrounded by
Germany, Belgium, and the North Sea. Add and link to a map of Northeast
Europe highlighting the location of the Netherlands.  Its inhabitants are
indigenous Dutch people and immigrant groups from Indonesia, Suriname, and
the Antilles, Morocco, and Turkey. Indonesia, Suriname, and the Antilles are
former Dutch colonies and many of their residents immigrated to the
Netherlands after these countries claimed their independence.
Indonesia is located in southeast Asia and the former Dutch Antilles and 
Suriname are located in the northeast corner of South America.  The Dutch imported 
people from Morocco and Turkey as temporary workers, many who remained in the 
Netherlands and eventually became Dutch citizens.
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HISTORICAL CONTEXT
Hip-hop was introduced in the Netherlands through underground channels-
radio stations, later MTV, and Hollywood films in the 1980s.  The Suriname
youth were the first to embrace hip-hop in Holland, relating to the sound and
message of black American DJs and MCs. In 1982, they created a hip-hop
subculture that replaced the reggae subculture of earlier generations. The
Suriname youth from Amsterdam, Rotterdam, and The Hague established hip-hop
meeting places where they organized hop-hop parties and contests and developed
rules about style, commitment, and behavior to establish an “authentic” hardcore
hip-hop identity that included:
wearing specific brand-name clothes
buying specific hip-hop recordings
identifying with specific hip-hop radio and television programs
Gangsta rap dominated the imported hip-hop styles. The images associated with
gangsta rap influenced the negative perceptions of the wider Dutch community
regarding the hip-hop as a genre.
Interview with Vigilante
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SURINAME HIP-HOP PIONEER: MC SRARANG

Underground Dutch rappers initially imitated American models. By 1985, they
had begun to write original lyrics in English.  During this year, hip-hop began
to move into the mainstream through the concerts of black American rappers,
hip-hop parties and contests hosted at traditional entertainment venues.  
By 1986, MC Srarang (Clyde Godlieb) from Suriname had introduced new elements
to hip-hop, giving the genre a local identity.  After initially imitating black
American models, he began rapping in his native tongue and writing lyrics based
on his experiences and observations of daily life.  He explains: 
Interview with MC Srarang  
MC Srarang raps about jealousy, friendships, money and “people who want to bigger
and better that someone else.”
He derived samples from various sources including Kaseko music, an early form of
Surinamese popular music:
"Bigi Emeri"
He also derived samples from Middle Eastern and Asiatic traditions, musical sounds
of children, and black American styles including funk:
"Doekoe" [money] (1992) 
"Fawakka"[how are you?] (1992)
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Transformative Elements: Verbal 
DUTCH HIP-HOP PIONEER: DEF P

Rapper Def P (Pascal Griffioen) was one of the first non-black Dutch youth to
appreciate hip-hop. He became interested in this music in 1982 at age 12 upon
hearing hip-hop on an underground radio station.  He was fascinated by the
rhythmical rhyming and wanted to learn more about the tradition. He went to the
early hip-hop parties, and often was the only white present:
Interview with Def P
White Dutch rapper Def P imitated black American rappers for 4
years then formed Funky Fresh Force in 1986
Funky Fresh Force imitates black American rappers in English
Funky Fresh Four "We Are" (1986)
Funky Fresh Four "Amsterdam" (1988)
In 1988 Hip-Hop in The Netherlands began evolving into a more commercialized form.
Talent scouts began to contract MC to rap one-liners on hip-house records.
Rappers sign commercial contracts with record producers.
Rap blends with other commercial forms.
Funky Fresh Four "Legacy of Wizard" (1990)
In 1988, Def P visited Los Angeles and played his song for West Coast
rappers. They didn't like his music because the
rhymes and rhythm didn't sound right.
They suggested that Def P create his own raps and from his Dutch
experience and then he considered rapping in Dutch.
In 1989 Def P left Funky Fresh Four and formed Osdorp Posse because Funky 
Fresh Four was becoming too commercial. Def P began to write and perform hip hop in
a Dutch style and from a Dutch perspective.
Osdorp Posse "Osdorp Styl" (1989) 
Osdorp Posse "Commercial Aids" (1992) 
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Transformative Elements: Verbal 

In 1992 Def P wrote and performed Dutch versions of gangsta raps.
However, the Netherlands did not have gangs nor gang related
activities. Def P also literally translated black slang and
profanity into Dutch.
Osdorp Posse "Murderer" (1992)
Vigilante discusses their views about gangsta rap
Beginning in 1996/1997 Def P transformed the American style into a Dutch
hard rock version.
Osdorp Posse "Briljant, Hard en Geslepen" (1992) 
Osdorp Posse "Brilliant, Hard, Loud and Sly"
Vigilante discusses their response to Osdorp Posse’s rock-oriented rap
Osdorp Posse in concert Movie 1 Movie 2 Movie 3 Movie 4 Movie 5
Def P summarizes this transformational process:

 


HIP-HOP IN DUTCH CULTURE: PROCESSES OF PRODUCTION
Phase I Imitition 
Musicians study and imitate selected Black American genres.
Phase II Reinterpretation --> Hybridization
Musicians experiment with and incorporate elements from Dutch or
Surinameese culture to produce a type of hybrid style.

Phase III Transformation --> Indigenization
Dutch/ European or Surinamese/ African Diasporia sources replace
American ones to produce an emergent style.

While MC Srarang, Def P and other rappers have created a distinctive Dutch
hip-hop style, others have chosen to construct styles that infuse
older and newer hip-hop styles that result.

RECORDINGS OF OTHER DUTCH HIP-HOP GROUPS:
Scorpio "Slam with Gangstadam" 
Grey "In Full Flowa"
Nuclarity "Glass Box" 
Nuclarity "Whatever" 

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Last updated 8 June 2001 © Trustees Indiana University