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The International Ambassador of Hip Hop
The Taiwanese' Independent Ear to Hip Hop
By Tun-jen Lim
(more articles from this author)
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I see Hip Hop has spread to every corner of the globe. In every continent, people rhyme in their language, which I feel is showing the growth of Hip Hop on an international level. But when you have a song written in French, it doesn't really help the Japanese Hip Hop heads feel the power of the culture down in Paris and vice versa. So the speech of Hip Hop that is most known when heard worldwide is in English.

There are now Jewish to Asian Hip Hop artists. nowadays. Most notably, after the Eminem run, is Jin of the Ruff Ryders. It was written in the Source Magazine he was the Asian Eminem, but that was self proclaimed by the Label Ruff Ryders, and we all know from hearing some of his project that he is no where near the blond bomber. As a matter of fact he is actually quite disappointing.

Other Asian artist are emerging quickly to fill the role of International Hip Hop Ambassador. We have to face the fact that the artists who aren't Ebony or Ivory, who have been pushed to the front lines with even major companies supporting them, have come up short of hitting that homerun to break Hank Aaron's record, so to speak. From that group come Smilez and Southstar (who are like a pop group) to the vanishing buzz of the

Though Def Jam Japan has great artists like Sphere of Influence and Dabo, you never hear about them on an international level since they rhyme in Japanese.

But one artist making a run for the triple crown of Hip Hop is Thailand's Shomori Pass . The Los Angeles-based emcee that is from Thailand maybe the next level of the emcee evolution. With all of his music being done in English, I feel he has the most appeal out of every artist I have mentioned and all the ones I didn't. The reason I say this is not because of the English appeal, but Shomori Pass simply has the rhyme skills and the metaphors to make you replay the CD once a verse has passed to the point where you probably won't even realize what he just said unless you're intoxicated or have an IQ score of 165. One thing holding him back is the beat selection, though he seems to bring the best out of the mediocre music that I've heard. But mark my word, if he ever gets with the likes of say, DJ Premier, It would be over.

As quickly as Hip Hop is spreading, artists in every country need to speed up the evolution process. Hip Hop should not be getting worse. There are a lot of Hip Hop fans to cater to, and they should not be let down. One of the only newcomers I see holding the torch in these rap Olympics is Shomori Pass. So my vote for the International Ambassador of Hip Hop will go to Shomori Pass because I don't see him letting Hip Hop fans down in The United States or Thailand. And let's face it - no one is really interested in "Learning Chinese" anymore.

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