last nights hip hop show at southpaw (brooklyn), featured flown in palestinian rap group, “dam,” rebel diaz, and invincible. the event was a fundraiser for a delegation of native american youth to palestine. the result, a spirit raising, head nodding, red hued, rocking night.
invincible was on when i came through the door, i said it before. later in the show dj oja goes about ilana, “one of the best female mc’s out there,” and invincible goes, “fuck that,” and they go back and forth till invincible goes, “one of the best mc’s out there period.” which i appreciated. invincible has the ill music video out where she goes back to roots (israel) to branch out further. in the bright, glossy hip hop video, recently screened at south by southwest, invincible unpacks the israeli birthright trips with humor and a dope beat.
rebel diaz, man these three stole my heart when they ripped it almost every night at the u.s. social forum in atlanta two summers ago. they truly held the space, and thats what i like about them, they hold the space all the time. with charge and love, shouts to all mc’s battling the nypd and to female mc’s, us most especially.
dam, a rap trio just in from palestine worked the stage so hard. their performance was raw and vulnerable. dam is strong enough to be proud of their native tongue (arabic), strategic enough to master a new tongue through hip hop (english). i loved it when dam led the audience in a hip hop lesson on the arabic alphabet, in its entirety, backwards and forwards. the songs were electric, backed by one dam mc’s instruction, “if we can learn english through hip hop, you can learn arabic through hip hop.” it reminded me of the blackalicious english alphabet vignette. except so live you could taste it, ptsd morphed into pure energy. honestly, a little lost for words on these guys, check the pics.
what a great night in brooklyn. peace to the flatbush crew, all the mc’s, and to pep!