Ethiopian-Israeli rap music against police brutality


Associated Press news agency, 12 July 2019, writes about this video about music:

Ethiopian rappers challenging Israel police through song

In his song “Handcuffed”, rapper Teddy Neguse addresses police brutality against young Israeli men of Ethiopian descent.

Although the song came out in 2017, it has recently reached new heights in the wake of street protests across the country following the killing of an Ethiopian Israeli teen by an off-duty police officer last month.

This week the 23-year-old artist was invited to perform his song live on the popular news website Ynet.

Neguse’s appearance on Ynet illustrates the growing Ethiopian Israeli presence in the local music scene.

But it also reflects the ongoing struggles against alleged racism and discrimination, some three decades after Ethiopian Jews began arriving in Israel.

Large numbers of Ethiopian Jews began arriving in Israel via secret airlifts in the 1980s.

The new arrivals from a rural, developing African country struggled to find their footing in an increasingly high-tech Israel.

Throughout the decades, Ethiopians have suffered discrimination.

In the late 1990s, it was discovered that Israel’s health services were throwing out Ethiopian blood donations over fears of diseases contracted in Africa.

Accusations have also been raised that Israel has deliberately tried to curb birth rates in its Ethiopian communities.

Today there’s around 150,000 people in the Israel Ethiopian community, some 2% of the country’s 9 million citizens.

While some Israelis of Ethiopian descent have made gains in areas like the military, the police force and politics, the community continues to struggle with a lack of opportunity and high poverty rate.

Against this backdrop, Israeli artists of Ethiopian heritage are breaking out in the entertainment world, especially in the growing hip hop and dancehall scenes.

In his music video for “Handcuffed”, Neguse is dressed up as a soldier, riding a bicycle, when he encounters two policemen.

The officers then, seemingly unprovoked, beat him up.

The music video depicts a 2015 incident in which two policemen were filmed beating a uniformed Ethiopian Israeli soldier, sparking mass protests.

The most recent demonstrations erupted after the unarmed Solomon Teka, 18, was fatally shot by a police officer in a Haifa suburb on June 30.

Police say … at least 150 protesters were arrested.

The officer in question, who has claimed the youth was accidentally hit by a warning shot he had fired at the ground, is being investigated by internal affairs and remains under protective custody.

Another up-and-coming Ethiopian Israeli musician, Yael Mentesnot, says that in the past, the community has been “restrained” and “we end up coming off a bit naive.”

But this time she says the community is beginning to truly feel the despair.

“All the protests, they are not orchestrated, nothing there was organised,” she said.

“Everyone went to the streets frustrated and released their anger.”

While most of Mentesnot’s young solo career has been filled with upbeat party songs, she said the recent events have inspired her to address the Ethiopian Israelis’ struggle.

“Our whole life is a struggle, we face challenges, and we overcome them,” she said. “I want the public to see it. To understand what we feel.”

Neguse said he is pleased that Ethiopian musicians are on the rise, but said the recent protests should be seen as “a call for help, a cry of an entire community.”

4 thoughts on “Ethiopian-Israeli rap music against police brutality

  1. Pingback: French Macron bans protests against police brutality | Dear Kitty. Some blog

  2. Hello I’m projectillogic as of today I have 39 songs at http://www.soundcloud.com/projectillogic I used to be on reverb Nation but they stopped letting me upload new songs at reverb and at reverb these are the song reviews I had in my press kit

    “This is more my thing. It’s very upbeat and the guy rapping raps as good as snoop dogg who is the king of rapping. He has a very good voice for rapping and the backtrack is very good as well. Good rhyming in this rap as well. I really like this and hope I get more of this music. 

    “With regards those 2 comments you mentioned, I speak from the point of view of an engineer and from listening experience. For the first, there are many similarities between your music and music which has become successful and/or well known (as well as many differences), so with the appropriate nurturing and treatment, it could become successful”

    -Jabun

    “The song beat was great I loved the lyrics. The rap was just great I loved it I hope other people like this song to. The instrumental was great. The artist did a great job good work for him.The raps of the song was perfect I liked the rap it made since I liked this song. The rapper I think did a great job and I hope he can get big and get to be one of the greatest rappers of all time. I want this rapper to be known for his singing and I want people to know him.”

    “I really like this! The chorus I like a lot too. I love the lyrics. It’s deep and truthful. I like the diffent voices, it sounds like more than on person. The auto tune sounding voice is amazing with the song. The song is not too fast, or too slow, but just right. The lyrics are very understandable, and this song is just great. I would say a hit if it were to be on the radio. :)”

    “I love the lyrics nice beat, Nice tune I love the singers voice the song is a very good piece of music. Im a moder saint like a child palying games you always walk off! I love teh lyrics and teh beat. Im lost in the lyrics they are loved. Th estrain to never be afriad, no no no I can do what ever tonight no no no. This is a total a 10 so good I love this one! The fingers of fury I killed the bery love feel me I dont scare me no no no no fight me no ground!”

    “The 15 years rapping experience definitely shows, that’s definitely not something you can fake.”

    “I definitely see the potential in your music too. Keep at it and I’m sure eventually something’s gotta happen :D”

    “You are right, I see in you a lot of potential, and I see the “creative fire” burning really strong in your heart.”

    Like

  3. Pingback: Dictatorships buying at British arms fair | Dear Kitty. Some blog

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