Young rapper Gipsy using hip hop to provoke all sides

16-12-2004

Gipsy is a young Czech Romany rapper whose latest album is called "Ya Favourite CD Rom", with Rom a play on the Czech word for a Romany. Radio Prague caught up with Gipsy this week, and he told us about his relationship to Romany culture, his plans and - of course - his music.

Gipsy, photo: David VaughanGipsy, photo: David Vaughan "I'm rapping, I'm not playing in a Roma band. The question is: why not? It's 2004. I'm looking to the future, I'm not looking to the past - the past is behind me. I've been using Roma instruments on my album, there are live instruments from Roma culture. I didn't forget my music, I just changed it to the future."

"I have forgotten the Roma language. I grew up on the Czech streets with Czech people, so I've spoken Czech all the time. I know words, I understand pieces of language, but I don't get it all.

"My plan is not to stay with my music here. I've made already three albums before and they are in Czech. What I wanted to do was level up, I wanted to go a level up, which means I want to do an album for the international scene, not only the Czech scene. Because why spend my lifetime making another Czech album? I can make millions of Czech albums.

Gipsy, photo: David VaughanGipsy, photo: David Vaughan "I want to provoke all sides. Not only the white side - I want to provoke all sides. I mean both...Gypsies, and everyone who's listening. I don't want to go around...I just want to say if this is Coca Cola it is, I'm not going to say yeah, it's some black drink - no. So I'll say this is Gypsy, this is white, and it's like that. The best way to provoke, for me, is to make ironic very black fun.

"My song Life of a Roma is about one young Gypsy. He takes drugs; he sniffs toulen, which is a chemical. He's trying to describe his life and he feels like yeah, I'm someone, I'm cool. But he's really ground zero, he's no-one. So that's what the track is about. It's funny that he comes to steal a car but he's not able to steal the car because he's on drugs and he doesn't know he's doing. So it's funny, but it's true and it's also very realistic."

For more information go to www.gipsy.cz.

16-12-2004