Yet more tikitech - and sexism

As if it needed proving that tikitech themes and signals go beyond just the visual presentation, Chief Boima sent me a link to this mixtape via Facebook. The intro, especially, is very tiki - the recorded "jungle animal" sounds are textbook exotica, as well as neatly connecting to the Safari theme. Boima writes:

"[T]he Intro is so Tikitech it's not funny. I don't know Croatian, but check "Dobro Jutro is Afrike Intro," with the loop of Wyclef talking in Haitian Kreyol. I'm not sure but assume they are taking a vocal sample unintelligible to them, and putting it in a "tropical", or more specifically African context, to create the nonsensical "tribal" chant thing common to these types of productions. What stood out for me is that the sample they use to me is very recognizable and so in the wrong context. I mean big up these girls for trying something new out in New Zealand, but it's just an example of what you were looking for in my book."

Just as interesting however, which Boima also points out, is the reaction that the mixtape at global ghettotech high castle Mad Decent. It's hardly surprising, but disturbing nonetheless, how much casual sexism the DJs face because they're female - commentary about their appearance, that they are only posted because they're female, and a bunch of negative commentary you rarely see connected with male DJs. I think there's a couple of posts worth of material, at least, to be made around the construction of gender in global ghettotech, and I hope to return to the issue soon.

(Meanwhile, perhaps it's worth considering why a "summer mix" with "cheesy" elements doesn't fit into the supposedly inclusive global ghettotech archetype...)


Anonymous said...

hahahaha...Johan, your on to Tikitech again...

It seems that this is being directed at me and so let me qualify my supposed sexist comments....

Firstly, the mix itself barely introduced any new material, a lot of the tracks used on that mix are well known tracks, which is very disappointing given the standards we expect from Mad Decent. Saying that the mix itself was not too bad in the end, at least the girls could mix and did introduce some of their own edits of tracks which, whilst not ground-breaking, were ok.

Secondly, had I sent such a mix like that to Mad Decent or perhaps another male DJ had done so, there's not a hope in hell that they would have posted it.

Thus, thirdly, which leads one to assume that perhaps the real reason why the mix was posted is because the guy who posted it found the girls attractive or was doing them a favour.

On the other hand perhaps the guy who posted it did so because he genuinely rated the mix, in which case I assumed wrong and as you know Johan sometimes assumptions can be made incorrectly.

As for sexism, it exists in the music industry on a big scale, in fact in many instances it drives it at both ends...male and female and so there's no escaping that and I think it's pretty pointless expecting it to be politically correct because the industry is built upon exploitation in many guises including sexism!...it's not a religion...albeit it is for some but without the religious moral foundations found in conventional religions.

If you were referring to my particular comments being sexist, then that's your opinion...but I would not say they were....If for example the guy who posted it idolised Diplo and stuck up a mediocre and copycat mix that Diplo had done then I'd be accusing him of bum-licking Diplo..in jesting fashion of course!

As for Global Ghettotech inclusiveness, nobody said that the mix was not global ghettotech just because it was full of stale material or cheesy tracks.....

Dude sometimes I just think you take these matters far too seriously, when at the end of the day it's just music.....and I make a point of responding so you can perhaps view things in a different light.

However, I'm afraid a majority of people involved in this scene could not care less what you have to say about this and other issues.

Indeed I'd go as far as to say I'm sure they do not even know such issues exist or are being debated and even if they did, they probably would still not give a damn.

BTW, you should check out the Virgin Fang post on our blog too as you might find the cover interesting to your debate and a recent official remix I did too for Vieux Farka Toure, which he personally approved, that I call Voodoo House and the intro is full of jungle sounds, perhaps that might interest you too for your debate.


Anonymous said...

Oh yeah, just want to add, it's great that you're cataloging this stuff and I am following it with interest even though I sometimes have been at the receiving end of it.


Birdseed said...

Well, dude, as you know I see music as both just music and as embodying politics at some level. I don't think you can escape that when dealing with the music of marginalised groups, there's going to be power relations going on at some level. Normally, I just love posting the music of (say) 14-year-old poor french kids, because my blog (admittedly humble, I know a lot of the people I talk about don't follow me) helps the stuff get an outlet and boosts their opportunity. AND because it's great music.

From this perspective, which applies to all power relations, I have to call out when people reduce female players in the scene to just their appearance. I don't think your comment was the worst of the lot, but it's part of a pattern where you're all effectively saying that these women *are* what they look like, and that's their most important quality - and denigrating the blogger for trying to be inclusive. I don't think you'd EVER hear a judgement like that about a male DJ.

I think, of course, that there are more underlying issues as well, about how we value music in the first place. I hope to return to that soon. :)

Definitely going to check out the Virgin Fang thing.

wayne&wax said...

diplo is so hott

Anonymous said...

Ok Johan, point taken..can't say you're wrong and maybe that's just the way it was unwittingly, can't grumble with that.

And if that is the way it was, then I'm fairly disappointed in myself but perhaps I am becoming less caring not to cross the sexist line in my old age.

I don't want to rant on as to why I don't think I am sexist cause I suppose we all are to a degree every so often.

And yes, Wayne I agree Diplo is as hot as his choons....hahahaha

Nice one and thanks for drawing it to my attention.

Going on to the 14 year old pretty boys, re: Logobi, you did question whether there was a queer element...now does that make you homophobic?

:-) as always, sincerely.

Keep doing it...keep waking us up from time to time!


Anonymous said...

Finally 4got to say, again it boils down to "reality"...men like looking at attractive women...I'm sure you had your stack of pin ups in your teens., maybe you still do...

That does not make it right....to denigrate women to that level...but that's the way of the world.

But I'd much rather look at a pic of pretty girl than a handsome man....why...because I like looking at pretty women and I think every heterosexual male does...

Some of the comments on that post come to the same conclusion, that the girls were there, not on merit, but because of the way they looked.

Sadly, that's how it is sometimes and who's to say that the girls knew exactly what they were doing and were manipulating their sexuality deliberately for that reason...some do..!

If that mix had been by a guy, I'm pretty sure, the same question marks would have been raised as to why they stuck it up and if the guy in question who posted it was openly gay then maybe we would have said the same things...


Birdseed said...

Hey, I'm allowed to make gay jokes since I'm bi myself. ;)

Anonymous said...

Hey that might be the case and yes I guess you are allowed if you're in the company of gay/bi people but maybe not if your in the company of a heterosexuals cause it might send out the wrong message....

You have to be consistent with your own morality for people to treat you as a credible, genuine, sincere authority!


Birdseed said...

See I don't think I want to be. Any criticism you see on here is just as likely to be a veiled reflective criticism of myself as of everyone else. I think it's more sincere, and less likely to be hypocritical, if you admit to your own shortcomings as well.

In the case of the ZaZa twins, though, "queer" is a totally positive sentiment. I looooove my gay music, and if they were gay it would be another poisitve to add to the young, poor and black. (See, that semi-conscious tick-off list is obviously way open to criticism and hugely problematic. But I'll admit I sometimes think that way!)

Anonymous said...

ok..suppose I see more and more where you're coming from, or as the case may be, less and less hahahha. :-)


Boima said...

Ok guys, I've made some comments at my Blog Bloggy Blog. It got too long for here.

julianne said...

Of course the "reverse sexism" card is pulled in comment numero UNO! KUDOS for keeping it real for gender norms.