Wednesday, May 25, 2016

Kmer Hip Hop viewed creatively through the prism of Kmer Football

Krotal, Boudor, Rasyn, Ak Sang Grave, XLM squad, VBH and Nabil were some of the pioneer Indomitable Lions rapper team(s) that qualified Cameroon for the 1982 hip hop world cup. They played well and came to the limelight and had marginal success with three draws. Krotal’s 2004 hit “Jamais” was Mbida Arantes’ equalizer in our 1-1 draw against eventual 1982 world cup winners, Italy. A few years passed and these guys and a couple of other newcomer rappers like fineboy Koppo who is fineboy Joel Eppale and Big B'zy who is huge Patrick Suffo qualified the Indomitable lions for the 1990 world cup. Then a Roger Milla burst onto the rap scene, who no one was expecting would jump to the utmost peak called Jovi with his hit, “Don for Kwat”. The gong/xylophone/flute like beat was Cameroon’authentic. His word play on the field of Pidgin English, English and French was sublime. His punch lines were Muhammed Ali heavy. “I’ll rather kick the bucket than have an empty pocket. Fast way, fast money, shoot like a rocket.” His lyrics were strong mboko poetry, his rhymes were Shakespearean and his “Humanity Is Vanishing (HIV)” album shone well at the 1990 world cup, our hip hop Roger Milla, a fine rap technician and music producer tactician who even produced Akon’s song, “Shine your light” and has brought Kmer hip hop to international audiences more than ever before with his later albums.

An Archille Webo named Stanley Enow arrived and scored a hat trick against Cote d’Ivoire in Abidjan in his debut Indomitable Lions game with his mega hit, “Hein Pere”. Though his rap technique wasn’t extraordinary, his delivery on the song was cool and some of his punch lines really excited the public, “Charlotte Dipanda I go marry you, Lady Ponce I go marry you!” He was a born entertainer who moved crowds especially with his later knack for corny. But most importantly, he had a very efficient PR team that knew how to market him and he received accolades. I’ll burrow Italian football and say Stanley Enow is more of Filipo Inzaghi, the Italian striker with no technique and but great zeal for scoring goals, whether legitimate or illegitimate, whom Sir Alex Ferguson once described as “born in an offside position”, for we later learnt that the “Hein Pere” hat trick hit he scored was a bunch of offside goals because he re-used the American rapper, Sopresice’s beat to generate the heat in his hit.  Furthermore, his post “Hein Pere” corny songs didn’t quite grip the public, just like Webo did nothing on the pitch for a decade after the 2005 Abidjan hat trick exploit.

Franko is Clinton Njie who achieved instant fame with a brace against Cote d’Ivoire at the Mfandena stadium, with a controversial song titled “Coller les petites” which a Sous-Prefet accused him of scoring “with his hand” and it ironically increased his popularity because the accusation even aired on French media and the song got Drogba dancing. Pascal is Tchoutang Bernard gifted with technical ability. Le General Valsero is Joseph Antoine Bell instilled with revolutionary philosophical wisdom like Immortal Technique. Maalox is simply a very brilliant satirist. Blueprint Hakeem is Eric Maxim Choupo Mouting, another good rap technician. Finally, Emma Mimba is an exciting prospect at the Ecole de Foot de Brasseries, with his “bushfaller to perica in pays” discussion rap on social media. So who is Samuel Eto’o? I’m tempted to say X-Maleya because of their consistency of hit goals since “Yelele” in 2010 and great international success but they’re not doing rap music, so they’re not Eto’o. But some other Kmer hip hop fans may howl in my ear and argue that Jovi is Eto'o. Well, I said he is Milla because he was the first to really make Kmer hip hop emerge to international audiences like le pere did with Kmer football.