Donnerstag, 22. Oktober 2009

an open letter to hip-hop artists

(translated from German blog Jessica Sagt)
Dear Hip-hop artists,
Look out! It could be that you are not prepared for the swiss public. When you say "put your hands up!", Swiss people (perhaps people in all German-speaking nations) will only "put up" a finger. Try as you might, they will not show you their palms. It's also this way in schools. Americans may think that Swiss children mean "we're number one". It's probably something to do with nazis, or perhaps one finger reaches higher than I hand. I don't know.

Instructions in general are dangerous. Although the majority of the audience understand english, it's difficult to understand, perhaps it's the stage or a dialekt thing. "Are y'all ready?!" is more or less understandable. "We gonna need an Ambu-LANCE" is more difficult, especially with a haitian/New Jersey accent (Wyclef Jean, I'm looking in your direction). Instructions should be short, sweet and to the point.

Speaking of understanding, at least half of your audience can barely understand your lyrics. Additional commentary (especially culturally-specific commentary) will not be understood. If you say something about chains, the audience will raise their chains. It's not that they don't care but that they don't understand that you've just said something negative about chains.

Lastly, I want to warn you. Don't be afrain, but be prepared: At the end of your set the assembled crowd will make a strange noise - a groan really. In addition to that, they'll stamp their feet. Surprisingly then they open their hands, so that they can wiggle their fingers at the ends of their forward-reaching arms. This is not evil. They are not trying to put a curse on you. It's not some strange helvetian MoJo. That's just the way they request an encore.

I'm always glad to see my favorite musicians. I hope that this info is helpful and that you'll come again soon.

Your fan

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