Thursday, April 24, 2008


What sets Chicano rap apart from mainstream hip-hop is the strong cultural message that artists try to promote through their lyrics, beats, and imagery. The Chicano pride displayed by artists like Kid Frost and 2Mex is undoubtedly geniune, a far departure from the material fluff touted by 50 Cents and Lil' Jons of hip-hop.

The cultural message is rooted in the concept of "Aztlan," a territory in the Southwest that was once inhabited by indigenous Aztecs. Though much of the territory was ceded to the United States following the Mexican-American War (1846-1848), Chicanos contend that the land rightfully belongs to them, and have subsequently maintained strong ties to the area.

According to the Chicano Student Movement of Aztlan (MEChA) based at Cal State, Chicanos are a people "not only proud of its historical heritage, but also of the brutal 'gringo' invasion of the our territories." As a result , they do not "recognize capricious frontiers on the bronze contient," asserting that Aztlan should belong to those who literally and metephorically "plant the seeds, water the fields, and gather the crops."

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