【寫.說唱】Beef除了是hip hop競爭,也可以殺人|專欄

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編按:無論閣下對本地 hip hop 生態是否熟悉,也許都對近期掀起的 Beef 風波有所聽聞。一切由廠牌 Bakerie 上周三發表的歌曲〈DLLM〉開始,除了歌中的含沙射影,主腦 Dough-boy 還即晚登上網台節目,解說當中恩怨。而另一邊廂的T先生及撒野作風 Wild$tyle Records,則分別以聲明帖文回應,指出歌詞失實。昨日米奇老味神奇屋再釋出 remix〈DLLM〉的〈180K〉,明言是對 Wild$tyle 和 T 先生的 diss。

作為樂迷,除了隔岸觀火,也不妨以此為契機,了解 Beef 文化的來龍去脈。除了歌詞表面上的八掛,Beef 體現了 hip hop 的何種精神?史上最刺激卻也最悲劇的 Beef 又是怎樣的?

事件由Bakerie發布〈DLLM〉開始,當撒野作風回應後,米奇老味神奇屋再發布〈180K〉。

撒野作風 Wild$tyle Records 發帖以時間線回應指控。

 

文:Michael Ka Chi Cheuk(Britpop/Alternative樂隊陳大文主唱,樂隊專輯《Ordinary People》現已透過幻想唱片發售。)

譯:曾凱茵

*英文原文在下

Beef 原是 19 世紀美國俚語,有投訴之意。至於在 Hip hop 文化中,Beef 則指兩個人或兩個團體之間的分歧或夙怨(feud),相關人士會藉助傳媒,或以說唱歌曲回應。

要衡量一場 Beef 在 hip hop 史上的文化意義,較常用的標準,是由因夙怨衍生、具侮辱性的「diss track」質量判定。和 freestyle rap battle 不同,個人恩怨成為 rapper 互噴的語境。而這又是個讓 rapper、聽眾都能參與其中的平台,一方面,rapper 以此鍛鍊口頭靈敏度來羞辱對方;另一方面,觀眾能享受八卦 Beef 及欣賞口頭戰爭帶來的雙重樂趣。一些更深入的研究,進一步揭示了 Beef 能具像化地呈現幾個足以定義 hip hop 的特色。

Hip hop 強調競爭。沒有哪個認真的 rapper,不渴望成為天下第一,或者用 hip hop 術語來說,成為最 dope 的一個。為了決定誰是至高無上,rapper 們互相比拼,表現自己的巧舌,侮辱對手。

最早的 hip hop Beef,可以追溯到 1981 年的紐約曼哈頓Harlem World夜店,Kool Mo Dee 和 Busy Bee 的對決。Hip hop 歷史學家認為,這是 lyrical MC 和 party MC 兩個門派之間的對決。最後 Busy bee 敗給 Kool Mo Dee,成為 hip hop 音樂的轉捩點:把字詞妙用及文字遊戲之價值表露無遺的 lyrical MC 由此發跡。

Hip hop 的競爭精神,還與自我膨脹有關。這是種希望打敗另一位比自己更受歡迎、更受人敬仰的 rapper 的強烈欲望,以及那種想維護個人聲望和尊嚴的迫切需要。Hip hop 史上最刺激,卻也最悲劇的 Beef,不得不談 1990 年代美國東西岸之間的夙怨。

這場夙怨最初由東岸 rapper Common 的單曲〈I Used To Love H.E.R〉而起,被視為是在侮辱西岸 hip hop 和愈發普及的 gangsta rap。

She used to only swing it with the inner-city circle

Now she be in the burbs, lookin' rock and dressin' hippie

And on some dumb shit when she comes to the city

Talkin' bout poppin' Glocks, servin' rocks and hittin' switches

Now she's a gangsta rollin' with gangsta bitches

西岸 rapper Mack 10 和 Ice Cube 則以單曲〈Westside Slaughterhouse〉反擊,維護個人榮譽。

Well, it's the dog, breathin' out the smog

I'm a hog of this gangsta shit, Don of the clique

All you suckas wanna diss the Pacific

But you buster niggas never get specific

Used to love her, mad ‘cause we fucked her

Pussy-whipped bitch with no Common Sense

Hip-hop started in the West

 

橫跨東西岸的情仇,在 90 年代迅速蔓延並白熱化。西岸由 2Pac 帶頭,東岸領軍人則是 The Notorious B.I.G.,儘管許多 hip hop 經典如 B.I.G. 的〈Who Shot Ya〉和 2Pac 的〈Hit Em Up〉,都在這場 Beef 中誕生,暴力卻很快取代了歌詞。Thug culture跳出了歌曲的界線,成為現實中的暴力。六個月之間,2Pac 和 B.I.G. 先後遇害。

最偉大的兩位 rapper 之死,讓 hip hop 社群醒悟到,是時候將個人情緒和暴力從 hip hop 文化中抽離。來到 21 世紀,Beef 作為市場策略的附加功能愈趨明顯,作為商業和藝術的結合,hip hop 音樂更是聲名大躁。Jay Z 曾自言:「我不是生意人,我就是生意,老兄。(I'm not a businessman, I'm a business, man.)」Rapper 充分利用 beef 去取得商業關注、曝光,隨著 Jay Z 和 Nas 長達十年的重大 Beef 落幕,hip hop 催生了它史上最受商業推動的夙怨。2007年,Kanye West 和 50 Cent 組織了不涉及暴力和個人恩怨的 Beef,轉而競爭最高專輯銷量,輸家要從此退出 hip hop 界。Kanye West 勝了,而 50 Cent 最終沒兌現承諾,但這不重要,因為這場夙怨重新燃起了 hip hop ——作為當代最複雜、最好鬥的音樂種類和文化的特色:競爭。

今時今日最大牌的 rapper ,例如 Drake、Nicki Minaj 和 Kendrick Lamar,都對 Beef 的文化傳統作過貢獻。就連香港聽眾熟悉的 MC Jin 也曾和一位叫 China Mac 的 rapper Beef 過,MC Jin 還在美國時,被 China Mac 指責不尊重他的隊員,其後更引發了一場槍擊事件,China Mac 因此入獄。Beef 仍是 hip hop 音樂和文化中不可或缺的一部分。

對於diss及beef這兩個詞彙,作者有以下補充:

Diss/diss track 侮辱/具侮辱性的歌 = start beef 挑機/挑釁Beef 夙怨 = both parties response 雙方都出手回應Response 出手回應 = respond through songs or media/social media to defend one's reputation (passive-aggressive Facebook note inclusive) 透過歌曲或媒體/社交媒體回應去維護其個人聲譽(被動攻擊性的面書網誌聲明也包括在內)

As I have mentioned in the article, hip hop is about competition and respect. if someone starts beef with you, you have to respond. If a rapper doesn't respond to beef, his credibility is weak. I think the difference between diss and beef is not that huge, in a hip hop context. Of course, all of these debates about definitions boil down to the ultimate issue in hip hop: authenticity. What is “real” hip hop? This is a question no one can authoritatively answer.

正如我在文章中提到的,hip hop是關於競爭和尊重。如果有人向你挑機,你必須回應。如果一個rapper受到挑釁卻沒有回應,他的信譽就很弱了。我認為,在hip hop的語境中,diss和beef並沒有很大的區別。當然,所有這些字面定義的爭論,最終還須歸納為一個hip hop的終極問題:本真性 - 什麼是“真正的” hip hop?這是一個還沒有人有絕對的權威去回答的問題。

**扭耳仔是次向作者邀稿,旨在給樂迷對一些音樂詞彙有更深入認識,而非人云亦云不知所以然。我們不是娛樂版,不欲報導八卦,更無意作什麼宣傳,只希望從事件當中學習。

 

What is ''beef''?

A beef in hip hop culture is a disagreement or feud between two individuals. The term ''beef'' is a 19th century American slang for ''complaint''. In a beef, the involved parties respond either through the media or rap music.

The cultural significance of a beef in hip hop is often measured by the quality of the ''diss tracks'' (musical responses that contains insults) that comes about from the feud. Unlike a freestyle rap battle, personal conflict is used as the context for an exchange of insults between rappers in a beef. The conflict becomes the stage for rappers and listeners to participate in the beef. On one hand, rappers view the beef as an excuse to exercise their verbal dexterity to insult another rapper.On the other hand, audiences can enjoy the double pleasure of gossiping about the beef and appreciating the verbal warfare manifested from it. Closer examination further reveals beef as an embodiment of several features that defines hip hop.

hip hop is competitive. All serious rappers aspire to be the best, or the ''dopest'' in the hip hop scene. In order to decide who is no.1, rappers compete through a display of their verbal dexterity to insult each other. The earliest hip hop beef can be traced back to the 1981 battle between Kool Mo Dee vs Busy Bee at the Harlem World in Manhattan, New York. hip hop historians consider the battle as one between the lyrical MC and the party MC. The defeat of Busy Bee by Kool Mo Dee became the turning point of hip hop music: The battle gave birth to the lyrical MC who demonstrated value in the use of words and wordplay.

The competitive spirit of hip hop is also laced with intense braggadocio. This results in a heightened desire to overpower a more popular or respected rapper, and a desperate need to defend one's reputation and dignity. The most exciting yet tragic hip hop beef in history is the East Coast vs West Coast feud in the 1990s.

The beef originally started with East Coast rapper Common's track ''I Used To Love H.E.R.'', which was perceived to be an insult towards West Coast hip hop and its popularisation of gangsta rap.

She was old school when I was just a shorty

Never knew throughout my life she would be there for me

On the regular, not a church girl, she was secular

Not about the money, those studs was mic-checkin' her

But I respected her, she hit me in the heart

A few New York niggas had did her in the park

But she was there for me, and I was there for her

West Coast rappers Mack 10 and Ice Cube responded with the track ''Westside Slaughterhouse'' to defend their honor. The feud grew rapidly throughout the mid 90s.

Well, it's the dog, breathin' out the smog

I'm a hog of this gangsta shit, Don of the clique

All you suckas wanna diss the Pacific

But you buster niggas never get specific

Used to love her, mad 'cause we fucked her

Pussy-whipped bitch with no Common Sense

Hip-hop started in the West

The West Coast was represented by 2Pac, and The Notorious B.I.G. represented the East Coast. Although the beef spawned hip hop classics like B.I.G.'s ''Who Shot Ya?'' and 2Pac's ''Hit Em Up'', physical violence soon overtook the lyrics. The thug culture which rappers rapped about in their songs translated into actual violence. In the span of six months, both 2Pac and B.I.G. were killed.

After the death of two of the greatest rappers, the hip hop community realised it needed to separate personal emotions and violence from hip hop culture. Beef in the 21st century increasingly serves an additional function as a marketing ploy. hip hop is notable for its mix of commercial and art. Jay Z's self-proclamation suggests, ''I'm not a businessman, I'm a business, man.'' rappers utilise beef to gain commercial attention and exposure. Following the end of the monumental, decade-long beef between Nas and Jay Z, hip hop produced its most commercially-driven feud. In 2007, Kanye West and 50 Cent orchestrated a feud that did not concern violence or personal disagreements. Instead, their ''beef'' was a competition for the biggest album release sales, in which the loser had to retire from hip hop. Kanye West came out as victorious. While 50 Cent ultimately did not retire, it mattered little as the feud reignited the competitiveness that characterizes hip hop as today's most complex and aggressive and musical genre and culture.

Today's biggest rap stars such as Drake, Nicki Minaj, and Kendrick Lamar have all contributed to this cultural tradition. Even Hong Kong's very own MC Jin was reportedly once involved in a beef with another rapper named China Mac. During his time in the States, MC Jin was accused by China Mac for disrespecting one of his crew members. The feud later evolved into a shooting incident which led to the imprisonment of China Mac. Beef remains an integral part of hip hop music and culture.



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