Really enjoyed this item in The Wall Street Journal this morning:
In ‘Chap-Hop,’ Gentlemen Rappers Bust Rhymes About Tea, Cricket
Just Like in Hip-Hop, British MCs Feud Over Styles: Waistcoat vs. Pith Helmet
BRIGHTON, England—For some British rappers, nothing goes better with laying down rhymes than a gin and tonic and a Sunday afternoon stroll…
Professor Elemental, a self-styled “Steampunk Mad Professor” and leading chap-hop MC, is one of its top exponents. He is easy to spot in the Marwood Café here, even amid its décor of spectacle-wearing stuffed owls and dismembered mannequins. Clad in Victorian-explorer garb, complete with pith helmet, he is eager to talk about his planned trip across the Atlantic.
“I’m going to break America, and ride it like a pony,” Elemental—real name Paul Alborough—explains while sipping English Breakfast. “Global domination, then a nice sit down and a cup of tea.”
First though, Mr. Alborough, 35 years old, has a score to settle. In doing so, he is subverting another hip-hop staple: the feud, or beef. Biggie and Tupac, Lil’ Kim and Nicki Minaj—rivalries are as important to the genre as rapping is.
Elemental’s rival is an hour’s train ride away in London: Mr. B, The Gentleman Rhymer—real name Jim Burke—is backstage at the Wam Bam Club, a burlesque nightclub in the Café de Paris…
In the video above, you can see Professor Elemental throwing down some trash talk aimed directly at Mr. B, below.
Finally, hip-hop that I can get into! As comfortable and satisfying as a proper English breakfast!
Unfortunately, after listening to it, I don’t feel any less whitebread than I did before… Oh, well. Stiff upper lip and all that…