Have you heard about the rising Vietnamese rapper, Suboi? diaCRITICS editor Viet Thanh Nguyen on why you should listen to her music.
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The Guardian runs this interesting profile of Suboi, Viet Nam’s most popular female rapper. Check out the improvised rap she does for the article. She is known as “Vietnam‘s queen of hip-hop, an outspoken artist who raps via coded lyrics about family, love, social pressures and illegal substances in a country where artists regularly worry about being visited by the authorities.”
Suboi’s “Chất Riêng Của Tôi”–so much better than the usual pop fluff
Suboi “taught herself English by rapping along to Eminem. ‘All he does is curse – that’s why my English is so bad and rude,’ she laughs. ‘I remember one song he wrote for his ex-wife, Kim: ‘Bitch, I’m-a kill you, you don’t wanna fuck with me.’ That was what I learned first.'”
Suboi raps with Thai Viet G, and does a better job
Suboi has the right attitude for a rapper: “You don’t know who I am, or whether I’m right or wrong,” she raps…then explains: “I’m no gangster, but I do get mad a lot. And if they don’t like it, I don’t care.”
Suboi raps in English in Những Đứa Bạn (Friends)
Viet Thanh Nguyen is a Los Angeles-based professor, teacher, critic and fiction writer, author of Race and Resistance: Literature and Politics in Asian America and numerous short stories in Best New American Voices, TriQuarterly, Narrative and other magazines. He is the editor of diaCRITICS. More info about him here and his writings for diaCRITICS here.
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