Hip Hop Roundup: Far East Movement for Starters

December 16, 2010

Photo courtesy of Angie Linder

If you're hooked up to Hyphen on Facebook, you already know that Far East Movement is covering the next issue. These guys were my first professional interview in 2006; they have a special place in my heart and I'm proud to see them completely killing it in 2010. "Like a G6" bangs so hard it went double platinum this year, and even 50 Cent did a remix.

They are indeed the face of Asian American hip hop these days, but here are a couple of other rumblings from the web:

Dumbfoundead has a free mixtape for download right now. I'm only barely familiar with his work, but free is always good, especially if you're a huge fan. The download is worth it for "This Life" alone.

A good interview with Filipino American Beat Junkies DJ Rhettmatic recently went up on on Hardknock.tv. The conversation is all over the place, but Rhettmatic touches on some interesting points here, and he shouts out a few Asian Americans in the hip hop scene, some of whom I'd never heard of before (namely !llmind, who apparently produced for some of my husband's favorite hip hop acts including Boot Camp Clik, Little Brother, and Skyzoo, and is now signed with G-Unit):

He points out an Asian American "bubble" in the hip hop community that artists often need to break out of. I'm not entirely sure I'm following this correctly, but I think he's talking about a subset of Asian American hip hoppers who only listen to underground Asian American hip hop. I know there are a scads of Asian American artists in hip hop, but I had no idea there were enough artists to make this possible. Can anyone confirm, or am I reading this completely wrong?



Theresa Celebran Jones


Theresa Celebran Jones was born and raised in Connecticut and has moved cross-country four times. She currently lives in Los Angeles with her husband and two young daughters. She works full-time as a technical writer and is an MFA dropout. Her only other hobbies are reading, taking pictures, scrapbooking, and listening to hip hop. Clearly she has no social life.



I've had similar experiences fronting a reggae band. We'd open for Sizzla, me and six white guys, and I'd get the hard stare from the crowd. Three songs in and I'd say "I know y'all are thinking "Who dis chinee-man tink he cyan sing di reggay?" which broke the crowd into laughter. Myself, I branch out, but I know how insular Filipinos can be. A friend of mine promotes Filipino indie rock bands on the East Coast, and I see something parallel happening there, where the bands play with other Filipino bands and rarely play outside of that scene.