Haiti’s Rap Créole and Sosyete X

 

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“Rap créole” [Creole Rap] has gained unprecedented popularity in the Haitian music scene. Sosyete X is one of the groups that have adopted rap, in a highly intelligent way, as a vehicle for denouncing what they find to be unacceptable in today’s society. According to Christian Jr. Desrameaux, the group’s three members— hip-hoppers Nels’, Awobazz, and DJ Hard One— are motivated by a desire to make people reflect on what is happening in the world around them. Sosyete X not only proposes a social, but also provides a critique of rap music itself.

While at one time, hip-hop presented the main mode of expression for young people from disenfranchised communities, rap has now become the preferred means of reaching youth. Through their poignant lyrics, inspired by daily reality, Sosyete X attempt to stir constructive debates, to make people think about their environments, and to denounce intolerable circumstances.  The group values Haitian culture and their songs are also influenced by folkloric music; they like to use traditional instruments such as drums, the flute, the vaksin, and the tcha-tcha. For the group, “rap is creation [. . .], conviction, position, and [the] mission is not only to entertain.” It is also knowledge and, according to the lyrics of one of their popular songs, “Renovatio,” “it can awaken awareness.” Sosyete X hope to deliver a message that provokes positive changes at many levels.

For full review (in French) by Christian Jr. Desrameaux, see http://www.haitipressnetwork.com/news.cfm?articleID=12081

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