KCON 2013: Asian Americans In Hip Hop Panel

We’ll be kicking off our KCON 2013 coverage with, one of my favorite panels of the convention, Asian Americans in Hip Hop featuring Shin BArthur Baek (SB) and Dumbfoundead and Soonho Choi as moderator.

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Left to Right: Shin B, Arthur Baek (SB), Dumbfoundead, Soonho Choi

Asian Americans have been making a name for themselves in Hip-Hop from the underground to mainstream and even K-Hip-Hop for ages. Join our guests as they take you through their trials and triumphs of becoming Asian American Hip-Hop artists.

Lets do a quick breakdown for those of you who may be unfamiliar with the panelists. Shin-B is best known as the Fastest Female Rapper on YouTube and has performed with the likes of LeeSsang & BaeChiGi as well as Jay Sean. Arthur Baek is a rapper a part of SoulCityRockerz Baby with some exciting projects in the works. Dumbfoundead is a Koreatown ambassador of sorts, but in between making new music he helps out the community with his collaborative project Knockstudy made to help students pursue their interest in music.

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Dumbfoundead

Dumbfoundead, in particular, had a lot to say which was great and extremely refreshing from the standard cookie-cutter answers you get when it comes to Kpop interviews. He had some strong feelings about why did it have to take SO long for Dynamic Duo to finally win after they’ve been around for 11 years despite most of Kpop being heavily based off of the Hip Hop genre and style. I won’t lie. I got a little excited when he mentioned the diss battles surrounding E-Sens and Simon D that had been going on, because NO one seemed to be talking about it at KCON. So that satiated my need for gossip-y drama for the day. He also had some feelings on some Korean rappers needing to step up their visuals.

You can’t rap in front of a graffitied wall all the time and shoot a video … Throw some tigers in there or some shit! GD got baby pandas, you know what I’m saying? You can’t just throw in some pop lockers and bboys and call it a day … You gotta get creative and weird … Maybe Kpop artists are helping step up the Hip Hop artists more.

Shin-B talked about her recent trip to Korea and how inspiring it was for her. Not only from the shopping and food, but just the overall energy that is brought out at the shows in Korea. She also slipped in a shout out to Nell; one of my personal favorite Korean Indie bands that aren’t so Indie anymore!

Towards the end of the panel they started taking questions from the audience such as who were everyone’s favorite Korean rappers they suggest fans to check out. Dumbfoundead picked JTONG and Zion T. Shin-B picked Simon D. Arthur Baek picked Dynamic Duo and Swings. Shortly before Kevin Shea came to troll the Q&A portion, the audience was treated to a impromptu rap battle amongst the panelists per request of a fan. Definitely one of the highlights for me.

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G-Dragon

I’m going to go ahead and close out with another Dumbfoundead quote that had the audience in tears.

G-Dragon is like an alien. Sometimes he looks like a dude. Sometimes he looks like a chick. And that’s dope.

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