According to our colleagues at Freemuse, in the 3.5 years the organisation has been monitoring authority abuse on rappers around the world, they have found at least 60 international rappers to have been detained, harassed, jailed and now facing legal consequences.
Iranian rapper Toomaj Salehi is one of these people. Freemuse accounts that he was detained and later released on bail, but now facing charges for “spreading propaganda against the [Iranian] state. In his song Normal Life he addresses worker’s strikes, corruption and imprisonments in his country.
Nokrolik is a 22 year old rapper from Belarus and another victim of authoritarian oppression against artists. Recently he was sentenced to spend a year in jail for questioning the president’s intelligence in one of his new songs. This appearantly scared the little president man very much. Enough so that when Nokrolik will have finished his sentence he will be deported out of Belarus.
Please share the music of these artists and help spread their word. Find out more about Freemuse’s campaign to raise awareness about oppressed rappers via their tRAPped campaign.
Some people say there is no protest music anymore.
The truth is a bit different though. All around the world, there are so many people hurting, anywhere you look, and this seemingly never changes. But, there are also so many artists using their creative minds to start positive conversations about how things can change for the better. This can easily be seen by checking out the curated Shouts playlist and other protest music playlists.
How can there be a lack of protest music in a world like this? If one digs under the most upper layer of mainstream surfaces one can easily find a plethora of music by artists who are sick and tired of the lack of empathy in this world and who use their talents to be a part of a more compassionate world.
Uriya Rosenman is a rapper. He was born on the spot of this planet that now is called Israel.
Sameh Zakout is a rapper. He was born on the spot of this planet that now is called Palestine.
The two spent some time together. They talked. The argued. They became friends. Because in the end, we are all the same. We all poo. We all pee. We all breathe oxygen. And we all just want to live a kind life without nonsense and violence.
This is just one song of so many that are trying to make the world a better place.
As it often happens, the current protests in Thailand started out as student events. This generation has had to partially grow up in times started by the 2014 coup d’état in Thailand. Now more people are joining the protests demanding the resignation of General Prayuth Chan-ocha’s government and an economic reform of the monarchy.
Some members of the rap collective have been arrested for their activism as we’ve covered before here on Shouts. That does not seem to slow them down though. They blast through the new song with seemingly no concern for their own safety. Artists have been jailed around the world for using their voices in this way.