January 11, 1996
The University of Washington Student Newspaper
Arts & Entertainment
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Attack of the killer hip-hop Jenna Montgomery Daily Staff
For two hours every Sunday evening, DJs Nasty Nes and Mike Clark host Seattle's only all hip hop show, "Rap Attack," on KCMU. Program Director Don Yates brought in Nasty Nes in 1988 to start the show. From Mr. Supreme, host of "Diggin' in the Crates," to Robert Brewer, who keeps tabs on local shows and takes phoned-in requests, the studio is always jumping with people helping out in some way, all to promote the show and hip hop in general."We're just trying to fill a void that's here in Seattle in the hip hop scene," says Clark.Nasty Nes, originally from the Philippines, moved to the U.S. in 1970. Since then, he has worked with rap artists such as Sir Mix-A-Lot (they co-founded Nastymix Records in 1983), hosted a rap show on KFOX until it was banned at the station, and opened his own company, Crazy Pinoy Productions. "I brought what I learned from New York here to Seattle. I think I've helped KCMU get a lot of popularity. When people think of Seattle and hip hop, they think of our show on KCMU."Clark (from Seattle) met Nes in the early 80s from the shows Nes used to put on. Clark replaced DJ Glen Boyd at Rap Attack three years ago.Hip hop music has become the medium through which many are able to discuss what they see on the streets and express what they feel in their hearts. Hip hop is a style of dress and speech, a way of life, and a way to make a living. It continues to have a great impact on popular culture and society at large, yet the music can't seem to get more than a couple hours of airplay in this town. In Tacoma, they have two rap shows on the radio; in Portland, they have three - not to mention what is going on in New York, Philadelphia, Chicago and L.A."I'm surprised that other stations don't have more rap shows," Brewer said. "It's sad for a city so big to be so limited. On top of that, there's not much room for local artists to get their music out. These guys just want to perform, but most of their listeners are under 21." Rap Attack aims for diversity in their repertoire, playing local groups (such as Funk Daddy, Source of Labor, Ghetto Children, and Pros and Concepts), Christian rap, east and west coast rap, and some tribe, funk, and house music."It seems that music has to be on MTV before anybody can play it," Clark said. "We've got an ear for hip hop, so we know what's gonna hit. A lot of times [commercial radio] play off of us."Nes opens the mic to community organizations "with something positive going on, helping those who don't have money to go to school or are involved in gangs." The people at the studio certainly reflect the positiveness that Nes talks about. "Hip hop has been real good to me, so I want to be good to it back."Rap Attack airs from 6 to 8 p.m. every Sunday evening.
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