Vegans of Color

Because we don’t have the luxury of being single-issue

Hip Hop and Food August 24, 2008

Filed under: Uncategorized — Royce @ 12:37 pm

It took me a long time to get into hip hop. I got into punk music in middle school, and didn’t expand outside of punk and its offspring until college. So as my ideas on oppression grew, so did my new found crush on hip hop. Anyways there are three hip hop songs that I have liked at some point involving food, so I thought I’d share.

Beef and Broccoli

Immortal Technique used to a big deal here at Vassar. We know how liberal art students love appropriation. I used to really like Immortal Technique– in a few choice songs. Now I feel his blatant misogyny and homophobia definitely aren’t worth his tired (but still solid) critiques of liberal capitalism and racism. Though I always was disappointed in Immortal Techniques inability to see veganism as revolutionary, I realize because it has a lot to do with the way other artists portray veganism.

Be Healthy

Like Dead Prez. I love Dead Prez, and who can deny that lentil soup is mental fruit. Though this is one of their most apolitical songs, it still makes veganism sound so good.

Hood Diet

This is my new favorite song about food. A song about food justice– hell yes. By Loer Velocity featuring Donnan Linkz.


14 Responses to “Hip Hop and Food”

  1. This isn’t related to this post, but just wanted to share in case anyone here feels like commenting on this article:

  2. johanna Says:

    Nice!! That last song ties in so many issues neatly together (& yeah, the Dead Prez song is fab too, natch).

  3. indo Says:

    Thanks for the links… Other veg*n rappers include KRS-One, Slug, the main rapper from All Natural (forget his name), Andre 3000.

    Can’t say I’m especially a fan of songs about veganism though… I thing from a it’s more interesting when rappers address how people of color have historically been compared to animals, i.e. Da Lench Mob’s “Guerillas in the Mist.” (though this song is plenty sexist and actually stereotypes africans as primitive as in contrast to african americans)

  4. Mel Says:

    Thanks for introducing me to Dead Prez with ‘Be Healthy’!

  5. ThoughtCriminal Says:

    It’s interesting (and saddening) that Stic Man from Dead Prez is no longer vegan.
    According to an interview with VegNews (on Vegcast # 48) about their recent issue, he eats fish!

    What happened to “no fish, no candy bars, no cigarettes”?
    I suppose it’s because veganism is merely a health issue to him. Sort of like Common also eating fish now because he “needs the protein”. Ugh…

    Oh yea, and he now promotes Big Macs too! Yay!!!

    A good spot to find vegan hip hop is right here;

  6. joshivore Says:

    i’ve often wondered something about some of the political hip hop i’ve encountered, like immortal technique. that wonder is this:

    if the structure of oppression he decries came tumbling down and he was the architect of whatever was next, would what is next be equitable to all or just another structure of oppression? hatred of homosexuals and us poor vegans (that’s a joke) makes me wonder.

  7. don Says:

    Malcolm Rivers chimes in:

    Hip Hop on Life Support

  8. indo Says:

    thoughtcriminal-i think m1 was always the vegan, and i’m pretty sure in “happiness” on (same album as “be healthy”), stic raps about throwing “fish on the grill.”

    like u said, m1 says it’s for health above all else, but i do think that’s interesting–it seems to be part of a particular black muslim tradition in the U.S.

  9. ThoughtCriminal Says:

    Thanks for the response. I don’t recall the “fish on the grill” line but I’m pretty certain that it’s Stic Man who says, “no fish, no candy bars, no cigarettes” in “Be Healthy”.
    Not that it matters much to me anyways. I just thought it was, in some way, relevant to the post.
    As I mentioned above, there are many excellent vegan (not just pant-based diet having) artists on the vegan hip hop myspace page. And no, they don’t pay me to keep saying that.
    Thanks for the link.


  10. lord vegan Says:

    great exchange going on here first and foremost! curious, who knows of other vegan hip hop artists aside from the one’s showcased on the vegan hip hop movement page? i noticed that “indo” mentioned that both slug of atmosphere and capital d (emcee) or tone b. nimble (dj)? are vegan–how’d you learn of this? keep on building, mi gente! paz

  11. DJ Luminous Says:

    Hi there. I’ve just posted my ‘VEGAN ANTHEMS’ DJ mix online. Amazing just how many there are! 17 tracks, 1 hour 18 mins long. Artists incude Prince, X-Ray Spex, Wings, The Smiths and of course Dead Prez. Click on the link to listen and see track listing. You can also download the whole mix for Free!

  12. Anonymous Says:

    Why exactly is Lentil Soup “Mental Fruit”? I dont eat lentils EVER!

  13. Bozo Says:

    Why, exactly, is lentil soup considered “Mental Fruit”? Not being a jerk, just looking for an explanation on why this is true!

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