The Gay Roots of Hiphop
At the end of Mobb Deep’s “Quiet Storm,” which has a sick loop of “White Lines,” convict Lil’ Kim raps
“It’s the real/Hah, it’s the real baby, hip-hop hip-hop hip-hop…” The way she chants “hip-hop, hip-hop” directly references Man Parrish’s 1983 groundbreaking “Hip Hop Bee Bop (Don’t Stop).” Man Parrish, one of the founding fathers of hiphop, is gay and white. He also produced in 1984 “Boogie Down Bronx,” a solid street hit that featured a rapper named Cool Raul. Later, Man Parrish made a gay disco hit with Man 2 Man called “Male Stripper”. What does this all mean? There is no such thing as a clear center, as a hard truth. Hiphop’s birth was wonderfully messy. Check out the video of “Hip Hop Bee Bop (Don’t Stop)”; it challenges present notions of what is and what is not the soul of hiphop.