Standort: fm4.ORF.at / Meldung: "Gully Rap ist der Gangsta Rap Indiens"

Irmi Wutscher

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19. 1. 2017 - 19:10

Gully Rap ist der Gangsta Rap Indiens

Hiphop aus dem Slum für die Leute im Slum, der soziale Probleme anspricht. Naezy ist einer seiner prominentesten Vertreter - und gibt "Lectures" sowohl in seinen Tracks als auch im Interview.

Im Radio

Heute in FM4 Tribe Vibes ab 22 Uhr unterhalte ich mich mit Trishes über Mumbai und Gully Rap, es gibt das Interview mit Naezy und zahlreiche Tracks zu hören!

Das urban dictionary klärt uns auf: Gully kommt aus dem Sanskrit, heißt wörtlich Gasse. Umgangssprachlich heißt es so was wie von der Straße, oder dirty oder gangsta. Und so nennt sich der Hiphop aus dem Slum, der gerade von Mumbai aus Indien, vielleicht sogar die Welt erobert.

Gestartet hat das ganze 2014 der Rapper Naezy. Er hat mit seinem DIY-Track „Aafat!“ einen Youtube-Hit gelandet und der Mumbaier Rap Szene eine ganz neue Richtung gegeben. Was war daran so neu? Er rappt darin im Mumbaier Street Slang Bambaayia und er erzählt über das Leben im Slum: über die Drogen und die Gewalt. Jugendlicher Frust über diskriminierende Lehrer, vorwurfsvolle Eltern und andere Jungs aus dem Slum, die einem das Leben schwer machen. "Aafat!" wurde ein Internet-Hit und seitdem sind viele junge Männer aus dem Slum dem Beispiel von Naezy gefolgt und haben begonnen über ihr Alltagsleben zu rappen.

Naezy im Musikvideo zu "Aafat"

Screenshot / Naezy - Aafat

Naezy im Musikvideo zu "Aafat!"

Wie es ist nach Mumbai zu ziehen? Der Eintrag "Bandra Buzz" aus meinen Bombay Diaries erzählt mehr dazu.

Mumbai - auch bekannt unter dem Namen Bombay - ist eine Stadt an der Südwestküste und Indiens Entertainment-Hauptstadt: Bollywood ist hier, genauso wie die Musik- und die Modewelt Indiens und die Werbungsindustrie. Neben dem Glitz und Glamour, den das mit sich bringt, ist Mumbai Indiens Finanzhauptstadt. Wer es zu etwas bringen möchte, sagt man in Indien, zieht nach Mumbai, die Stadt der Ehrgeizigen und der Aufstrebenden. Das schlägt sich auch im dortigen Alltag nieder, die Stadt ist eine der am dichtesten besiedelten der Welt. Und Jahr für Jahr strömen neue Menschen dorthin, auf der Suche nach der großen Karriere oder einfach nur einem fixen Einkommen. Nicht wenige von ihnen landen in einem der zahlreichen Slums - auch weil die Wohnungspreise in Mumbai nicht nur für indische Verhältnisse unerschwinglich sind.

In einem solchen Slum ist Naezy selbst aufgewachsen, in einer muslimischen Nachbarschaft in Kurla, einem Vorort im Nordosten Mumbais. Während er in seiner Jugend noch so manches krumme Ding mit seinen Nachbarskindern gedreht hat, hat er eines Tages erkannt, dass es so nicht weitergehen kann – wie er auch im Kurzfilm Bombay70 (die Postleitzahl von Kurla quasi) erzählt:

Im Interview erzählt Naezy, wie es zu seinem ersten Track gekommen ist, welche Rolle seine Heimatstadt Mumbai für ihn spielt und warum seine Eltern nicht glücklich mit seiner Musikkarriere sind und lieber hätten, dass er Geschäftsmann ist.

How did you start out with HipHop?
When I was in the gully, in the slums, there used to be functions, where big speakers were put up and people used to dance to these Old School Hiphop-Tracks. There I heard Sean Pauls “Temperature” for the first time. The concept of the track was very interesting, and the lyrics were interesting, I got hooked. I didn’t know what genre that was, I didn’t know that there was something like Hiphop and Rock and so on– I thought there was an English song genre and a Hindi song genre. But the song got me hooked. I went to the cyber café, printed out the lyrics and memorized them. At school during lunchtime I used to imitate them. People used to love it! They said: You have a flow, bro!

Your first track "Aafat!" became a Youtube-Hit. When and where did you write it?

In college we formed a crew for a music festival of that college. We performed a track there, it was our first track. I went on stage for the first time and I felt: This is the place where I belong! But in the next year, due to internal politics in College, some discrimination stuff happened and they didn’t allow us to perform at the Festival. I got very angry. A lot of stuff was going on at that time. At home my parents were underestimating me, saying ‘he is of no use, he is not becoming an engineer or a doctor’. And apart from my parents and from this festival thing: in my neighborhood, when I was a kid I used to chill with the kids there, do all kind of stuff. But at one point in my life, I understood, that this is not right and we shouldn’t do this. So when I left that company they were hating me.

All of that stormed in my mind, I was so angry, so frustrated. I went on and just downloaded a beat from the internet. It was just a loop. And I started freestyling all my anger - I wrote the track within 4 hours. Then I shifted things up and down, so it became my life story, starting from the beginning: “I was born and brought up in the Ghetto“. In the track I spoke to the people of my hood, I spoke to my parents and to the teachers, who did the discrimination in college. I felt a kind of relief when I put it out on the internet. People were relating to it, because the same thing happened to them! They are also angry and they also want things to change! The Song got spread like anything and life changed afterwards. So that’s how I started, that was the first track of mine! It is called “Aafat”!

Mehr zu Gully Rap lesen

Poverty, corruption and crime: how India's 'gully rap' tells story of real life im Guardian

Hip Hop on the Central Line in der indischen Tageszeitung The Hindu

You are rapping about your hood, in your first song you were talking to the people there. How would you describe it? What does a Slum in Mumbai look like, what do people do there?

It is very different from Slums in the US, those ghettos that you see in an American Hiphop video. Here it is narrow, the houses are very small – because of the place. Mumbai is an island, there is not a lot of space here! There are some good parts about living in a slum and some bad parts. Most of them are bad, but the good part is, that you have your own land. It is not like you are living in an apartment on 4th or 5th floor – no! In a city like Mumbai, where living is so costly, you are living on your own land.

The people in the Slums are poor, that is why they are very dangerous. They do all kind of stuff, all kinds of people are living in the slum: Some are robbers, criminals, thugs, who get paid to beat people. And some are electricians, who are working hard and who are always hustling, always struggling. Then there are also educated people. I belong to a teachers family, my parents and aunties, they are all teachers. There are also very cultured people inside the slums. They are not very poor, but they are living there for a reason, because in Mumbai you won’t get a good home unless you have a lot of money… If I sell my slum home in Mumbai, I would get a fucking bungalow in Delhi. That’s the reality. Since the people are here already for a long time, there is a mixed population inside the slum. There are also advocates and doctors – but only very few.

Rapper Naezy mit Sonnenbrille

Irmi Wutscher/Radio FM4

When I lived in the Slum, all the kids were very mischievous. We used to roam around together. I used to come home and be this very innocent guy, but when I was out, I was just like them. I used to do all kind of stuff like them. Anyhow, my parents shifted me at the right time. Until I was 15 we lived in the Slum, but when my parents realized, this is not making me a good guy, I'm getting spoiled, we shifted. We moved to a place 800 meters from the slum. It is also in Kurla, the circle is the same, but at least I am not inside the slum, which is very dangerous.

Because of education I got out. Because the parents there [inside the slum] are not educated, they don’t send their children to school and that is the main reason, why they get spoiled. If they don’t study, how will they earn? They go into drug trafficking and start doing drugs. That’s what happened in our neighborhood. Not only here in Kurla but all over Bombay. All those small, small Slums and localities got spoiled because of the drugs, because of the poverty, because of little education, hollowness of the system. The system is not looking at neighborhoods like us, they are not paying attention. We are trying to make a change through our music, raising our voices against what is wrong. All the gully rappers, this whole movement is about that. We are trying to make a change.

The rappers before you were rapping about nice things, parties and girls, and you changed that. Through Bollywood-movies etc. I have the impression, that people here rather like to escape the reality than face the reality. In that sense you do a very controversial thing, you talk about the bad stuff.

I cannot run away from that, because I have seen that. The mainstream guys are running away, they don’t want to face it. They think, people are not going to listen to this. But the reality is: anything which affects anybody’s life, they are going to listen to it. The mainstream guys are rapping about girls and money and bitches and clothes and swag and cars. They like that shit and it sells. There is also a misconception about Hiphop in India: the masses think it’s about the girls, it’s about the parties, about alcohol and all. That’s not what the reality is like.

They are now checking our stuff, and this is like an eye opener, slowly people are picking it up. But the masses, the main audience in India, is not ready to accept this at all. They are like ‘What the hell is this? This guy is giving lectures in his music, we don’t want to listen to big lectures – we want that party song!’ so I am trying to give them both: Interesting lines and interesting music, which is banging at the same time. So I am mixing it up for the mainstream to consume it.

Naezy - Aafat

Screenshot / Naezy - Aafat

Do the mainstream guys rap in English?

They have chosen the standard Bollywood movie language (Anm.: Hindi) or Punjabi, which is very catchy. The language we rap in is the street language, Bambaiyya. It is the language, that we usually speak with our friends, parents, families, at home, on the streets. It is the language of the people; the common people speak in this language. We have picked this language up, because we could relate to it more. Even the autorikshaw-wallah (Tuktuk-driver) from the local train to the BMW-guy - everyone understands what we are saying. Because of the language that we chose.

How important is the city of Bombay to you? You talk about your hood in your songs, the city is portrayed in all your videos. And also: how easy is it to sell your music then to someone in other places. Would someone in, let’s say Delhi, be interested in something that talks about Bombay?

Bombay is the entertainment hub of India. Whatever happens in Bombay, everybody is interested in it. Bollywood is here, the Music industry, it is the financial capital and the entertainment capital of India. Apart from that: even if you go to the most expensive places in the south of the city, you will find slums over there. So there are slums everywhere in Bombay. We want to put this on the map: Bombay is not just about the entertainment industry, the commercial capital, the Victorian palaces. It is also about the people who made Bombay, who are working very hard each day to make Bombay. The story of the city, the hustle, the struggle, it inspires us to write more, to do more. No city has the spirit like Bombay has!

Gully Rap has become something like a movement now. Are you really famous because of that?

The Bombay scene was already there, but they were rapping in English. So I am not saying that I started the scene, but I gave it a direction. Then new rappers started emerging from the slums, even from the North, from Delhi for example, people started rapping in our style.

Das Interview ist im Rahmen des Medienbotschafter_innen-Programms der Robert-Bosch-Stiftung entstanden.

Derzeit sind wieder Plätze für Journalist_innen ausgeschrieben, die für 3 Monate nach Indien gehen wollen.

Is music your main Job now? Or do you have to do something else to support yourself?

Actually I have a lot of issues because of this, because of my parents, because of the place I am coming from. My parents are not ready to receive this money. Here a religious thing comes up: they say, Muslims cannot earn money through music. So the money is only for me, I am not giving it to my parents. They want me to earn money from some other thing, from doing a business or something, selling merchandise is ok. For me, apart from shows and concerts there is content creation. You do things for corporate companies, you make a jingle and you become fucking rich. You do something and they give you so much money - even in Bollywood. So for a musician here there is always hope and there is always money. But at the moment I am doing both at the same time: playing concerts and taking exams in college. For the satisfaction of my parents. I tell them that I am doing this as a part time thing. As a hobby. But I cannot leave music. I love it, I live music! Music is my life!

How do you feel about the fact, that rich people listen to your music now? Or white people? Do you think they will get your message? Or do you simply not care about that?

No, it is not like I don’t care! White people are always digging for new things. Even if they don’t understand, what I am trying to say on a track, even if they don’t understand the lyrics, the language, they would dig it because of the flow. They will understand that this is authentic and the music speaks: the flows, the rhythm. They (white people) won’t keep it in their playlists, but they will listen to it for once and they are going to show some interest in the story, how it is made and who made it. So if rappers are rapping for Bollywood, we are surely going to reach Europe and white people are going to love it! That’s it.

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