Hip-hop from out of the closet

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By Griffith Fuller


By Griffith Fuller

The revolution won’t be televised.Or at least this revolution is obscured from the eyes of the public. Hip-hop has always been rebellious, revealing the grim reality of oppressed Americans. It has shown the exact opposite of the American dream, the American nightmare.A groundbreaking hip-hop group, emerging from the underground “power to the people” movement, is Deep Dickollective. In a culture (black culture and hip-hop culture) where men are suppose to epitomize the machismo persona, it seems like there’s no voice for colored men who lay down with other men. Deep Dickollective intrigues their audience with their wit, focus on strangled social conditions from tainted politics, and afro-centrism.The group is from Oakland, with background in San Francisco as well. The members are made up of Juba Kalamka (pointfivefag), Tim’m T. West (25 percenter), Jeree Brown (JB RapItUP), Ryan Burke (Solis), Rashad Pridgen (Soulnubian), Marcus René Van (Mr. ManMan), and Leslie Taylor (Buttaflysoul). Taylor has appeared on Russel Simmon’s Def Poetry Jam.Their last release was “The Famous Outlaw League of Proto-Negroes.”The album opens with a “Proto Intro,” which leads into the pro-black anthem of “I Am.””I am, I am a black man. I am a black man from infinity to infinity.” The song reveals an intellectual and sensitive side to black men that is hidden behind the stereotypical aggression and rage that is often depicted in the media. “Deep Dickollective was created to interrogate the way we experience masculine identity as queer men of African descent,” Kalamka said.They consider themselves to be “oxymoronic.” They’re existence breaks the rules and bring what is ignored into the light.Deep Dickollective couldn’t be more bold and in-your face with its song “We Out.” It clearly states that the gentlemen of the group are out of the closet and open about their sexualities. The song is almost a slap in the face, and contains a dry humorous undertone. “We’re unapologetically black and queer, and that doesn’t fit neatly into the product mill, so to speak,” Kalamka said.Hip-hop is generally homophobic. Even the alternative artist who can be seen as being more positive, slip the word “fag” here or there to emasculate an opponent.However, the line between masculinity and femininity is being blurred. A subterranean culture of young urban men who secretly (on the down-low) seek other men like them, has emerged from the repressed queer urban youth. Even this small group is split into minor subdivisions. One side that has been referenced to frequently by socialites is the “homo-thugs.” They are characterized as queer young men (predominately men) who are very straight-acting and look, appear and sound straight. Imagine 50 Cent, Ludacris, Chingy and southern rapper T.I. as closet homosexuals; that is the image of a “homo-thug.” The other side, that Deep Dickollective represents, is what has been dubbed as “homo-hop.” This is the essence of hip-hop adored by gay hip-hoppers. Deep Dickollective epitomize the taste of “Real World: Philadelphia’s” masculine homosexual hip-hopper, Karamo.The song that especially shines off of “The Famous Outlaw League of Proto-Negroes” is “Soldiers.” The rebellious revolutionary side of the band sprout on the track, with a soulful beat and fierce flows. Deep Dickollective sings “Will the real revolutionary stand up, will the real revolutionary come bust. You can suffocate hate, dismiss, deny we; DDC still soldiers.”The group recently performed at the Western Regional LGBTQIA College Conference at the University of California Davis, where it had a mixed group of lesbians and non-black gay men waving their hands in the air. It also presented a few new members on stage. “The Famous Outlaw League of Proto-Negroes” is available through the group’s website deepdickollective.com, and its record label’s site sugartruckrecordings.com.Deep Dickollective is a group of revolutionaries and spoken word poets. The group has the heart of Che Guverra, and they’re not stepping down to “the establishment” or to domestic hip-hop artists. Whether America is ready for queer emcees or not, it’s something that can’t be denied. They exist, and probably have for a long time. Deep Dickollective is bold enough to be out of the closet, to revolutionize hip-hop in an entirely different manner.

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