Articles by Ness White

Ness White is a 26-year-young Black, lesbian, journalist, writer, poet, musician living in Philadelphia, PA. Born and partially-raised in Southern California before living in Washington State and Upstate New York, she has been something of a traveler her entire life, readily observing and striving to connect with anything and everything on her journey's path. So far, no connection has been as intense, as indelible as hip hop. For Ness, hip hop is more than a genre. It is a way of living with the body, emotions, mind, spirit all experiencing its core. In essence, it is a way of being in the world. Through her writing—using the page as a stage—she performs like an MC, capturing your attention with style, swag before touching your soul with the heart of her words. Read them and go where she has been, then take her with you on your own journey.


0d0c19531d6e29f793ed165732978408_L
0

Intro To Native American Rap

It’s no secret. Native Americans are rarely—if ever, really—represented in mainstream U.S. media. If they are represented, they are mostly shown as headdress wearing; chanting, dancing, and whooping; pipe smoking and horseback riding “Injuns” keeping cowboys and white settlers from the latter’s “rightful” land.

267b1948fa84309bc99f9c0289cabe44_L
0

The Battle Rap Dynamic

Although mainstream hip hop artists do not usually overtly diss their fellow rappers, the same competitive edge found in underground battle rap is present in the mainstream. In fact, for me the only difference is the way the attacks are packaged. While underground artists are down for jabs, hooks, and uppercuts, mainstream artists prefer slaps, shoves at most.

13f34e2b533e12c6166f88368dcd8c07_L
0

Cape Verde Got Bars Too

Off the coast of Senegal, there is a group of tiny islands known as Cape Verde. My mother’s side comes from this country, though I have never been to these islands nor have I been immersed in Cape Verdean culture. I maybe know two or three words in the native Kriolu language.

6f43b5263fbba79c5962514b85d34738_L
0

Australian Rappers Get Emotional

While listening to Australian—or Aussie—rapper Reflekt’s song, “Bullshit Poetry,” on YouTube, I scrolled down the comment section and come across a hater saying that Aussie hip hop is “too emotional” and not nearly raw enough. Of course, like any YouTube comment debate, there were counter comments from listeners who advised the hater to check out some other artists who were indeed rawer than the American artists the hater was likely accustomed to.

ccb4e23c8aa216f1e96d31ab209c036b_L
0

UK Grime Hits US Rhyme

With its heavy, dark basslines and futuristic-style elements, grime music is an art form that speaks to the shadow aspect of our souls. It resembles a fierceness that is tired of hiding, or even a power previously untapped. I don’t know how else to say it: grime is grimy. It is gutter, it is raw, it is hard. Maybe that is why US hip hop artists and fans are starting to notice and embrace it.

Screen Shot 2015-03-09 at 12.15.50 PM
0

Pho With Me You Know I Got It

Just because hip hop has traveled outside of the United States does not mean that it has escaped U.S. idiosyncrasies. Take hip hop in Vietnam, for example. While before researching the topic, I honestly expected the whole scene to be underground, there is actually a mainstream hip hop presence in the Southeast Asian country as well as a disgust for that presence in Vietnam’s underground hip hop arena. Sound similar to the tension between “street”—or underground—and mainstream hip hop in the United States?

OogeeWoogee. All Rights Reserved.