Thursday, 28 August 2008


While Helen Of... spends most evenings reading wordy, worthy tomes, we're not averse to a little trash every once in a while. That's why we'll be heading down to our friendly local book shop this week to purchase Let's Talk About Pep, the autobiography of Salt-N-Pepa's Sandra Denton. The book tells of Pepa's life, from her childhood in Jamaica to her time with the ever-fabulous rap group. If Amazon's sample excerpt, about Denton's love for lizards, is anything to go by, this book is going to immense...

One day I remember I got ahold of a machete. I was only like five years old. Don't ask me how I got it or where I got it from, but I had this machete and a bucket. I went around the farm looking for lizards or chameleons. They had all kinds of creatures on this farm, but there were a lot of chameleons. I was fascinated by them, watching them go to a green plant and turn green, then to the ground and turn brown. I walked around looking for them, and I would chop them in half and throw them into my bucket.

By the end of the day, I had a bucket full of chopped-up lizards. My sister came out and saw what I was doing and she scared the hell out of me. "What is that you're doing?!" she screamed. "Dem lizards gwon ride ya." She was telling me that the lizards were going to haunt me. That my doing that had unleashed some kind of curse. "Dem gwon ride ya!" my sister kept saying in her Jamaican patois. Well, they did ride me. As I got older, a lot of my friends would tell me, "You're such a chameleon." It was true. I was real good at blending in. I was good at taking on whatever was around me. If I hung out with thugs, I would be a thug. If I hung out with a prince, it was nothing for me to become royalty. My ability to fit in has been a blessing, but also a curse.


Anyhoo, it's been eight years since the mighty Salt-N-Pepa split (they've got a reality TV show and Salt is releasing a solo album, but there's no new S-N-P material to date). This got us thinking about the state of lady-led hip hop in 2008. We're happy to report it's really rather healthy. Here are a few of our current favourites...

Rye Rye - Brilliant bubblegum hip hop from M.I.A.'s protegee. Check out Wassup Wassup and Shake It To The Ground -

Kid Sister - Smart rhymes over poppy beats from the Chicago-based rapper. Check out current single Pro Nails (feat. Kanye West) -

Yo Majesty - Party electro hip-hop duo, known for their explosive live performances. Check out Club Action -

Bunny Rabbit - Brooklyn-based one-woman experimental rap whirlwind, backed by her brilliant producer Black Cracker. Check out Hit Em Up and It Ain't Easy -

Ooh, and Missy's releasing her new album Block Party in September, which will be reviewed on ...Countertop Writings once we've had a listen.

1 comment:

Adem With An E said...

I had no idea this book even existed! And that excerpt has convinced me to order the damn thing, that sounds full on.

"Dem gwon ride ya!"