Out Baltimore rappers discuss homophobia in hip-hop
June 20, 2012 | 2:43 pm
Gay and lesbian rappers DDm and TT recently spoke with the Baltimore Sun about homophobia in hip hop and how it is difficult for out rappers to gain notoriety in a subculture dominated by homophobia, where terms for homosexuals are used to slander other heterosexual rappers and phrases like “no homo” get popularized.
DDm and TT are part of a “small but growing” culture of Baltimore area artists that are out there trying to fight homophobia in hip hop.
TT recognizes herself as an artist before a lesbian, which makes sense because rappers like Jay-Z and Lil Wayne don’t fight for the title “straightest rapper alive,” they aspire to be the greatest; sexual preference doesn’t enter into the equation. She spoke of having difficulty with convincing her management team that a 27-year-old lesbian rapper could have mass appeal. TT mentioned Nicki Minaj and how she wished females had more representation in mainstream hip hop.TT also made mention of how lesbians aren’t taken seriously by a lot men in that subculture and that they’re looked on as simply bisexual. TT aims to get over these obstacles in hip hop by creating music that is more universal.
DDm (Dappa Dan midas) takes a much different approach to getting acceptance in the hip hop community. He says he takes influence from the charact Omar Little from the tv show “The Wire” who is also an out black man. DDm, like Omar, aims to be raw and aggressive with his music and he wants to keep the gay message in there for people that grew up like him; people that didn’t have a voice for them in hip hop. DDm commented on his peculiar position in hip hop:
Being a black, gay, male hip-hop artist who is aggressive and who can stand next to his straight counterparts, that is very intimidating to a culture that is obsessed with hyper-masculinity and a very misanthropic view on homosexuals [and] women, as well
DDm held a lot of respect for Freddie Mercury’s Queen for being able to deliever his message to large stadium audiences, but DDm is more determined to be a representative voice for “young, gay, black kids,” and said he wouldn’t stop until he was.
The climate in hip hop, as well as the world abroad does seem to be changing with rappers like Jay-Z and Will Smith vocalizing support for marriage equality.
Baltimore gay rappers are loud and proud [Baltimore Sun]