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Singer, songwriter and beatmaker JocElyn ellis and professional DJ Andre “A-Minor” Barden recently traveled to Bangladesh to teach hip-hop.
In September 2009, Charles Rivkin, the U.S. ambassador to France, drove to northern Paris for the unveiling of a mural at the Collège Martin Luther King, a middle school in the suburb (or banlieue) of Villier-le-Bel.
For several years now, American and German officials have struggled with how best to respond to Deso Dogg. The Ghanaian-German artist, whose legal name is Denis Cuspert, gained popularity during the mid-2000s as a pioneer in Germany’s gangsta-rap scene, performing with DMX and recording tracks like “Gangxtaboggy,” “Daz Iz Ein Drive By,” and “Meine Ambition Als Ridah.”
One of the odder phenomena of the last decade is hearing national security elites, terrorism experts, and career diplomats discuss the finer points of “flow,” “bling,” and the “politics of cool.” American and European terrorism experts have increasingly expressed concerns over “anti-American hip-hop,” accenting the radicalizing influence of the genre.
“There were no YouTube videos, online sites, or DVDs. The culture wasn’t there yet. I could hardly find any video cassettes to learn the dances from,” explains Sargis Andreasyan, better known as Godfather Flash among fellow break-dancers in Yerevan, Armenia.