Anyone remember when i rapped over the boondocks intro? Well its almost at 1000 plays so go check it out, please let me know what you think. Nothing makes me happier than hearing feedback. Let a nigga know. Peace/Love
I just wanted to get some things down about the overall structure of The Get Down, or, as I like to call it, the next big thing since Homer.
No, obviously not Homer Simpson. I mean the hypothetical author of the Iliad, the poet who tells an entire narrative of wrath and war and honour and shame among a setting of war and another one about finding home and your love- two epic poems that were recited orally and developed and changed over generations of poets reciting their lines, and defined the truth of a civilization across centuries.
Because I’m about to claim a possibly ludicrous thing- but rap/hip hop is exactly like this millennia-old way of storytelling, and no other piece illustrates that better than the Get Down.
Let’s look at the facts: The Get Down starts every episode with an adult Zeke rapping for a huge audience, and telling his life story through his art. He tells his story through his poetry, and from that point onwards, the story and every episode unfolds: He often addresses either Mylene or Shaolin when doing this. This reminds of the very first thing every epic poet does: “Muse, sing to me of…” Zeke starts off his story by positing a clear narrative and fiction, even though he is telling us his story. Often he also ends the episode, creating a frame story, which is a widely used narratological structure in epic poetry. Through verses, and rhythm, and rhyme, he tells us an epic tale of brotherhood and love during a time of war; is that not the very core it shares with the Iliad? And this of course, is true about all hip hop; it’s stories of started from the bottom now we’re here, it’s stories of straight outta Compton, it’s stories of unity. It’s telling it how it is through rhythm and rhyme, but The Get Down puts all of this, the birth of this, into a narrative, making it even more obvious.
This connection between this ancient method and modern artform is actually strengthened by some very obvious classical references as well: for example, in the first episode, Zeke goes to Les Inferno to ‘rescue’ Mylene from Cadillac, which calls to mind the Indian Ramayana, where prince Rama needs to rescue his wife Sita from the demon king Ravana, who keeps her captive on the island Lanka. Zeke calls the Get Down Brothers orators during the battle against the Notorious Three. Shao loves giving people epiteths and different names; He calls Dizzee ‘my alien brother’, Ra-Ra a ‘god of the sun’ and obv he calls Zeke Books; if there’s ever been an aspect of oral poetry that defines the genre it’s the wide range of names for every character. The club that Mylene performs at being a reference to the Rubicon, the line that Julius Caesar had to cross for shit to get real, to start a civil war, to let behind all ideas of safety and hesitation. I could honestly even add Kool Herc(ules) and his Caesars or showing them as hip hop gods, where Kool Herc sports Greek armour and Afrika Bambaata sports a pharao outfit; the Zulu queens explicitly naming the pyramids and obelisks (also a clapback to classicists! Egypt was African y’all keep that ‘cradle of Western civilization” away from me!) even the comic book style the show takes on in part 2 can be seen as a way of storytelling that was used mostly before the Renaissance!
And then we have the references to both opera and musical: you have Ra-Ra being obsessed with a space opera, and Dizzee with his alien-what other mediums are purely about expressing story through music??
Anyway, using this method, The Get Down quite literally shows how legendary and mythological this birthplace of hip hop has become, and shows how legendary the origin of rap is and what other story deserves that more than this one? Grnadmaster Flash is a legend and this show is doing its very best to underline that at all costs
I’m just saying, very incoherently, that the very structure of the Get Down defines hip hop- it’s about telling your story, defining yourself and your people, by oral poetry that is supported by strong rhythm-it’s a literal descendant of epic poetry and therefore the oldest and most basic way of expression known by humankind- and isn’t that wonderful?
TL;DR The Get Down uses the structure of epic oral poetry á la Homer and it adds so much to the whole idea of where hip hop came from-it’s the story of a people told through a method that is as old as humankind itself and deserves all the kudos it can get bc it’s a fucking masterpiece
Rapper Warrior Ninja from The Eric Andre Show featuring rappers freestyling while trying to navigate an obstacle course.
Danny Brown falls into a snake pit, A$ap Rocky fights a gladiator wannabe, Nocando gets hit with balls, Open Mike Eagle gets cattle prodded, and Go Dreamer falls on some mice traps. So yes, you should watch it.
I often think about our future. I used to think more about things I could lose compared to things I could achieve so I used to get many feed backs from others saying that I’m not enjoying the things in the right moment. I don’t think I could change my nature. I stay cautious by thinking about things I could lose and I feel like I’m becoming an adult by growing up.
Namjoon, 1st Star Interview | Trans Cred: Peachisoda