Commercial Spoofing the Creation of the Scratch
Perhaps you saw
the Heineken commercial, during the Grammy's, featuring a DJ rockin'
the party, back in the early 80's. He accidentally spills his beer on
the turntables and when he attempts to wipe it off he
"invents" the scratch. The year shown on the screen is 1982...
Many of Hip Hop's
legendary DJs have expressed their outrage but the most insulted of
all is the actual creator of the scratch, GrandWizzard Theodore. In
the Summer of 1975, at the age of 13, Theodore created the technique
that would eventually become one of the signature sounds of Hip Hop
As you can see
from the responses below- some people still possess the revolutionary
spirit that sparked Hip Hop in the first place!
Theodore and friends had to say recently about Heineken's mishandling
of Hip Hop culture.
Theodore (L Brothers & Fantastic 5): "It's a disgrace to the
Hip Hop culture. Heineken doesn't know the culture and they don't
contribute to it, then they have the audacity to give wrong
information about how scratching started! They take from the culture
and they don't give back. We should boycott Heineken. Scratching
started in 1982? I don't think so. That commercial is a total
disgrace. What they did was very very upsetting. I guess it's true
that the people shouldn't be using their own product. They must have
been drinking too many Heinekens when they made this commercial."
(U.T.F.0.): " I think it's an insult to people like myself and
especially the pioneers who originated and laid the groundwork for
where Hip Hop is today. These people (Heineken) don't know about,
were not part of, and had nothing to do with where Hip Hop came from
or where it's headed. They need to do more research and include more
pioneers in their commercials so the culture can be preserved and
taken into the next millennium where the truth lies. The truth lies
with the pioneers! This Hip Hop thing is only around 25 years old.
Originators and people like myself are still around. We can keep Hip
Hop culture preserved and keep the truth out there. People of today
may do their research but are not going to know the history like the
people who were actually there to help lay the foundation. To put it
another way, the people who build a house will know the house better
than the people who live in it. What Heineken did, when they wrote
'1982', was took out a big chunk of history. They misinformed an
enormous amount of people out there. That's not history. That is 'his
story'. 'His story' is not history. They need to get the facts
straight and put the right information out there."
DJ Charlie Chase
(Cold Crush Brothers): "Obviously heineken didn't use a
reputable consultant when they were working on this advertisement and
if they did, he/she needs to be fired. It's plain to see that
heineken is not doing their marketing homework, because if they had,
they wouldn't have insulted millions of hip hop viewers and
listeners, the same hip hop viewers and listeners that make heineken
one of the largest selling import beers in this country. What
heineken probably said was "hey, this looks cute and makes us
look really cool so let's put it out there cause it will sell more
beer" without taking the time to get the facts. Like a lot of
other industries including the recording industry, heineken is not
taking hip hop seriously enough to give it the proper representation
it deserves. Yea i agree, it was just a lousy commercial done
incorrectly and, "now you see it, now you don't and on with our
lives." true that!!!! But the bucket is now overflowing with all
the little specks of bullshit that's been dropped in by industries
and artists who want to make money at hip hop's expense. What i want
to do is call on all the heavy weights in hip hop, the ones who are
making all the mega dollars on endorsements, to speak up on this
matter. I have no enemies in this business and i get a lot of respect
and praise for my accomplishments from artists who claim to say
"if it wasn't for you i wouldn't be here today doing what i'm
doing." so now i call on those same artists (and you know who
you are) to defend the reputation of people like grand wizard
theodore and others, like myself, by speaking out and letting
industries like heineken know that you can't insult our intelligence
with misinforming advertisements like that and get away with it,
without answering to it. If you respect us and praise us then stand
with us in speaking out for what we worked and slaved so hard
for........ Hip hop aka the truth!!!!
Peace to all,
CHARLIE CHASE -
WORLD FAMOUS COLD CRUSH BROS."
DJ Disco Wiz:
"i was totally outraged and couldn't believe my eyes. i thought
it was just me, but is everyone trying to rewrite our history? its
bad enough these phony award shows don't recognize the true
beginnings of hip-hop and its pioneers, but they have the nerve to
allow sponsors to air these bullshit commercials and keep
brainwashing the generation at hand. this is the reason why the true
pioneers of hip-hop must align, and make a solid coalition, to
protect ourselves and our history against misrepresentations of this
kind. i ask my brothers to stand up and take notice, a lawsuit should
be in order.
peace, dj disco wiz"
"The Bishop of Hip Hop": "The recent "Hip
Hop" Heineken ad, does Hip Hop culture a great disservice. It
promotes unrealistic images of how and why the elements of our art
were created. It is a slap in the face to all true architects of the
culture and fans of the art. I feel it is unfair exploitation of
African American people as a whole, and Hip Hop culture across the
board. It is my sincere wish Heineken will pull that ad campaign immediately."
(Cold Crush Brothers): "Just another putrid attempt at humor
from advertising assholes who mock the most copied, imitated and
exploited culture since african drums. The invention of the scratch
was and is a boon to the hiphop culture as well as the entire music
industry and should not be made light of but brought to light.
Love, peace and
hair grease to my brother grand wizard d.j. theodore.
always boycotted all liquor companies personally cuz I don't drink
at all. I get intoxicated off of my music. I'm not opposed to
spoofing of our culture, but that should only be done by the insular
community when it's in responsible hands. No major corporation that
has no vested interest in our culture has any right to spoof. Quite
honestly though, I'd be more troubled by seeing Theodore in a
Heineken commercial than seeing a spoof. I don't watch TV at all,
haven't in over a decade. In any event, you have my support and good
luck. peace, bobbito"
DJ Lord (Public
Enemy): "Funny?...yea real funny!, Yet another superpower's
method to make "HEINEKEN" hip, convenient, and down with
that particular area of music that has the "youth" in a
frenzy right now. Culture? Theodore? History?...They could care less,
not to mention the perfect multi-million dollar advertising time and
spot..IN THE MIDST OF THE GRAMMYS..WHERE COMMONLY EVERYBODY AND THEIR
MAMMA IS WATCHING!..... BUUURRNNN HEINY!...BURRRRRNNN!"
(STYLELEMENTS CRU & BASBOMB-N-SOUNZ): EXACTLY WUT AMERICA IS
DEALIN WITH.....%^&* HEINEKEN I WILL NO LONGER SUPPORT ANYTHING
ASSOCIATED WIT THAT COMPANY...THANX 4 THE INFO....
HEY GRAND WIZARD I
APPRECIATE YOUR CREATION AND ON BEHALF OF PEOPLE WHO SHOULD HAVE BUT
HAVEN'T THANKED YOU FOR ALL THAT YOU'VE DONE."
Phase 2: "Even
if Hip Hop Heads drink more Heineken than Hitler and the entire
SS... YOU know the connection with hoppers and brewskis could never
exist through narrow minded shit like that. Probably lots of us
didn't even pick up on how thin that was. It's a matter of
"people" who have nothing to do with Hip Hop or the people
who live it, trying to appeal to our beer consuming masses by
appealing to them as being "down" (when they are not by
far) while cashing in on Hip Hop, not even realizing how totally
ignorant, ridiculously dense and extra stupidly stupid they are, in
their attempts to do so.
I bet alot of us
are too blind to even recognize it. But it just goes with all the
other insidiousness that Hip Hop's existence has brought along. It
isn't the first or last time Hip Hop (or black folks for that matter)
will be used or exploited through and by manufacturers and products
that we can do without the consumption or endorsement of....like
anything with refined white sugar in it -it hardens your arteries.
Alcohol, works wonders on livers and the pancreas as well as they
both wreck your complexion. Cow's milk...what's with those ridiculous
ads??? When are we gonna recognize that it's for their huge calves
and they all get their calcium from grass?? The lactose is
incompatible with our people and gives all of your sweet little
babies and kids tons of mucus in their system..
All of this
garbage has created a demand, thus there is the need to find and
create every possible avenue for it's purchase and consumption. If it
kills you in the longrun...someone is already rich and a sucker is
born every minute by slick advertisement and (im)propagander...
We all need boots
in the ass to recognize reality and stop going with a flow designed
to keep us in the dungeons of these demeaning and self destructive
facades disguised as hip and or 'a way of life' when in all actuality
it's more like a way of death..."
Q-Bert (ISP &
Thud Rumble): "It's always been very important for me to get the
word out to everyone about the beauty of our skratch music. But when
things like this happen and the great forefathers, and pioneers of
our art get angry and insulted, I'm always compelled to see the
negatives only as a blessing in disguise. Hopefully Heineken will
hear them and so will the public and in turn the music will be heard
along with the truth. Have no worries because everything is in
perfect order with the universe, it's just the time for it, believe
it or not...and you bet I'm gonna mention this shtick! Peace and
blessings yall' Qbert"
DJ Kuttin Kandi
(5th Platoon): "TO ALL ARTISTS, FANS AND LOVERS OF HIP-HOP... I
will not sit here and watch as we, people of Hip-Hop culture,
continue to play a part in the lies that corporate America has
created. For years, we have shouted out, marched, rallied and died
for our own rights, freedom of speech and to own our own lives. Yet,
when we gain these rights we deny those rights because we subject
ourselves to little hand-me-downs that America tempts us to believe
are real. They give us a little "freedom of our own", they
give us a little shine, let us make our speeches through our
rhymes... They let us make our own decisions, yet they influence us
to be a part of this mirage that fools us to believe that we overcame
oppression and enslavement. They entice us with money and fame, they
make us believe that they really care about our well-being... that
they really, really care about our music, our culture, our freedom.
It first starts with the airplay for our songs, then works its way
towards those rap star videos, then we get no minated for a grammy or
two, and then we get our own superstar commercials. My people, we
have been fooled. We are not our own. We have been corporized,
stamped on, claimed as slaves and sadly, we are our own prisoners.
They take our music, our songs, our dance, our art, our culture, our
lives... They claim it as their own and then claim us as their own...
Then after they're through making their millions out of us... they
bring us back to the jungles, leaving us for the lions to feed on us.
Then they condemn us for telling the truth in our rhymes and for
writing down our history through our way of poetry. They blast our
faces on television, mock our upbringings, and blame only us and our
culture for the violence, materialism and sexism in our society. My
fellow Hip-Hop people, sadly, we do have much to apologize for...
True, I can blame the MEDIA (such as beer companies, ahem) for
bringing misinformation to the masses.. Yes, I can blame radio and tv
stations, record labels, movies, newspapers, commercials and large
corporation companies for misleading our people to believe that
Hip-Hop is just about the benjamin's and bling blingin. Yes, I can
blame our schools, our teachers, our history books, the GOVERNMENT
for not teaching the real history we were never taught... I can blame
all of the above all I want... BUT we all know that we have as much
to blame... We have allowed ourselves to become part of the lies they
feed us by taking part of their commercials, by parading around in
the music videos that THEY DIRECT, by writing the rhymes THEY want
society to buy. How can we blame THEM for blaming us, when we're a
part of those lies? My Hip-Hop people, I am not asking you to quit
your careers, I am not telling you to not become that rap star or
that solid gold dancer on music videos... I am not asking you not to
be a part of this system... I am not even asking you to not be a part
of that corporate America. I know what it's like to struggle... I
know what it's like to be hungry and to want that golden dream. I
too, am human.. I crave to have that light, that golden dollar in my
pocket... So it's fine, be a part of those commercials, go dance in
your videos... BUT What I am asking you to do is to make a difference
to change the way they are trying to take over OUR CULTURE. Use your
rights and your freedom to make those phone calls, to write those
letters, to march on those rallies to protest against the lies that
these companies from labels, to beer companies, to radio stations to
music tv stations creates upon Hip-Hop. We need to change the
misinformation and fabricated stories they have fed to the MASSES...
even if it may seem humorous with their own version of how the
skratch was created... It may seem frivolous to all of you of my
generation that our older pioneers of Hip-Hop are complaining... It
may seem to you that they are being bitter and angry, but believe me,
20 years from now, that could be YOU. We need to preserve our culture
and cherish what our older generation have handed down to us. We need
to respect that and share the stage with them. I am asking all of YOU
to take a stand, young and old for TOGETHER we can make a difference
using America's system, using their commercials, using the media...
IF WE TAKE CONTROL. We can take this system and make it our own. We
can empower ourselves if we use it to our advantage - the right way,
that is... After all, it is what it is and we have to make the most
of it... If they're not telling the truth, we should write and
document our truth... so it shall be written into history. If they
take our culture and make it their own.. We should fight for it and
make our own commercials, make our own grammy awards nights, build
our own radio stations, make our own record labels... I know it isn't
easy, but its worth the struggle.. Hip-Hop is worth the struggle, our
freedom is worth the struggle.... If we continue to play along,
compromising with these sugar-coated dreams that corporate America
offers us... Hip-Hop will never be our own.
With much love
A true activist,
DJ Kuttin Kandi gave someone named Mercedes, at Heineken, a call on
Fri. March 2 and told her what she thought about that wack
commercial. You can call Heineken USA: 914-681-4100 or e-mail at
email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org to tell them what you
think. Thanks for your support!
Tools of War"