Diversifying Hip-Hop 2

root - Posted on 01 January 2000

by Leroy Moore/Illn n chillin

Diversifying Hip-Hop 2

In 2006 I asked the Bay Area’s Hip-Hop community and media with a mono microphone were they ready for diversifying Hip-Hop event. Through this event Hip-Hop artists and Poets with disabilities took the stage at LA Pena Cultural Center in Berkeley CA and at San Francisco, CA main library. This event pulled together some diverse voices in the spoken word and Hip-Hop arena, however the Bay Area at large didn’t embraced our voice and work on a large scale with only a handful of people showed up. Looking back on it, the foundation that was laid in 2006 helped spring to life further work and now there is another chance to complete the full vision of Diversifying Hip-Hop in 2009 on April 11th at U university of California at Berkeley.

The vision of the 2006 event was to crack minds locally that there are Hip-Hop artists and poets with disabilities by hosting a performance. In that same year, for the first time I shared a microphone at a radio station and had a chance to co\produced a three part sires on Hip-Hop artists with disabilities. However, the radio sires that lead to producing mixtapes featuring Hip-Hop artists with disabilities from around the world still left the vision of Diversifying Hip-Hop not complete. Being in the Bay Area, I found out that the stories of rejection to Hip-Hop artists with disabilities was shared by another group of talented Hip-Hop artists that had been speaking out since 2001 and formed their own movement, Homo-Hop, music and culture created by Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender people in the Oakland, East Bay Area.

To think back on it now I must of used without noticing it at the time, Homo-Hop like a map for what has now become Krip-Hop Project. It feels so good when you know that there are people that can relate and has provided a path of support knowing that we have our differences but share the same goal. Just attending PeaceOUT Homo-Hop Festival in Oakland, CA Homo-Hop events/ and reading articles on the topic reinforced the dedication to complete the vision of Diversifying Hip-Hop of 2006.

In 2006, Krip-Hop Project was born in Berkeley, CA. Krip-Hop Project’s mission is to educate the music, media industries and general public about the talents, history, rights and marketability of Hip-Hop artists and other musicians with disabilities. Krip-Hop main objective is to get the musical talents of hip-hop artists with disabilities into the hands of media outlets, educators, and hip-hop, disabled and race scholars, youth, journalists and hip-hop conference coordinators. Krip-Hop Project has put out two mixtapes, has a column on Hip-Hop Journalism Association website and Poor Magazine. Recently Krip-Hop project began an internet radio show on alltalkradio.net and will be in an upcoming documentary on Halfasouljr. I also continued to let my mind grow and learned about and attended the 2007 PeaceOut World HomoHop Festival in Oakland, CA.

PeaceOut World HomoHop Festival was an annual festival of hip hop music and culture created by Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender (LGBT) people and held in Oakland, California from 2001 to 2007. One of the creators of this festival, Juba Kalamka is most recognized for his work as a founding member of Deep Dickollective (D/DC). Juba knew about my work and I knew about his band, Deep Dickollective, and his writings on music for the magazine, Colorlines. During the 2007 PeaceOut Homo-Hop Festival in Oakland, CA, I talked to Juba about Hip-Hop artists with disabilities and he was down. Things always come back around! In 2008 Juba wrote a review of Krip-Hop Vol. 2 for Colorlines Magazine. Last year I was blessed to meet nyla moujaes of NaR, a queer San Francisco bay area hip hop crew hailing from the mountains of Lebanon and also met Galen Paterson who has worked with Homo-Hop artists and trying to bridge the Hip-Hop community to all different voices in Hip-Hop including Homo-Hop artists like NaR and DeepDickCollective to name a few. Recently I got to know one of the outspoken voices, more like his untamed pen, for Homo-Hop artists and just got finished reading his book, Hip-Hop Homophobes….., Khalil Amani.

All of the above and stories from artists in both communities, queer and disabled, has led to the completion of 2006 vision behind Diversifying Hip-Hop event. And that will be bringing the two communities together in a panel/performance event to go deeper then identity politics and screaming at local Hip-Hop community to open their doors but to first realize each other communities, history, talents and to lay groundwork for systematic chances in not only the music industry but other media avenues.

Planning and now advertising this event has brought some shocking responses and at the same time strong support. By placing disability and queerness together in the Hip-Hop arena has stripped some people from their customs. Krip-Hop Project would like to thank Art In Action, University of California at Berkeley, all the artists, Khalil Amani and the Homo-Hop movement for their support. I can go on about the negative attitudes I received but lets not go there for now! In short this event and the planning of it could be a very juicy book. Ummmm! Stay tune for more articles on Diversifying Hip-Hop: Krip-Hop Homo-Hop event. So we will see if the Bay Area is ready for our second try of Diversifying Hip-Hop…..event.

“Diversifying Hip-Hop: Krip-Hop Homo-Hop” is sponsored by the Disability Studies Program, the Division of Arts and Humanities, and the Departments of Art Practice, Theater Dance & Performance Studies, and African Diaspora Studies at U.C. Berkeley. The organizers also acknowledge the support of Poor Magazine, Turf Unity, Homo-Hop Radio and the Doreen Townsend Center Working Group for Hip-Hop Studies at UCB.

April 11th Saturday 11/2009 1-6 pm FREE Admission

Worth Ryder Gallery 116 Kroeber Hall

Contact: Leroy Moore at (510)) 649-8438



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