In our modern society, hip hop culture can be found everywhere – from the actual ghettos of America to picket-fence suburbia and the safe haven of convertible cars and college funds; where a generation of white kids have adopted the culture as their own.
Hence the rise of the white rapper and his/her influence (or lack thereof) on the music scene. In any conversation at any party in any corner of the world, should someone mention the term “white rapper” the mind will almost instinctively find an image of Eminem.
Slim Shady was raised rough – spending much of his youth in a broken-down, economically-depressed Detroit neighborhood, finding solace in hip hop music and beginning the struggle that comes along with making a name in the rap game – and that's what hip hop is all about, Charlie Brown … the struggle.
Pure and unadulterated hip hop comes from a place of hardship and hard-luck – a battle-cry against the system and the way of life which has been forced upon the hapless souls who society has deemed disparaged and doomed.
Obviously, we are not looking to pigeonhole as aside from Eminem, there have been a number of white rappers whose lyrics have substance and who understand what is really going on in the world. However, most of the time; the white rapper is a lame and lackluster creature.
The following are 10 examples of white rappers who are a disgrace to the genre:
In the 1990s, a group known as House of Pain were creating a white-trash-hip-hop-Irish image that suddenly made it cool to walk around the streets claiming Irish roots and rocking the #33 Larry Bird jersey.
The lead singer of HOF: Everlast (real name: Erik Schrody) would eventually break away from the group of perceived hoodlums to launch his solo career and release his blend of soft-rock-rap music to the masses – converting from Catholicism to Islam somewhere in-between and ditching the whole white-kid-Irish-thug routine.
Steer clear of Irish hip hop and listen to Irish punk rock or better yet, traditional Irish folk music.
Macklemore (real name: Ben Haggerty) and his prop Disc Jockey Ryan Lewis rose to fame in 2013 with the release of their song “Thrift Shop.” Macklemore wanted the entire world to know that he too has been down on his luck, having to shop at such places.
When the 56th Annual Grammy Awards rolled around, Macklemore would pick up awards for Best Rap Album, Best Rap Song, and Best Rap Performance as well as winning the Best New Artist award. That same night, Macklemore was joined on stage by Madonna – as she continued to cling and clutch at modern day pop culture in an attempt to stay relevant – on the song “Same Love” while thirty-three couples (many same-sex) were married on live television.
Look, supporting same-sex marriage and equality is great but Macklemore is just an attention-crazed white boy from Seattle who is trying ever-so hard to make waves on the hip hop scene by being “different” and discussing issues which have previously been untouched by the rap community.
Macklemore should head home to Seattle and start a grunge band – grow his hair and make his way back to the thrift shop for some torn jeans and flannel.
8 Big Smo
There is something off-putting about mixing hip hop and reality television. There is nothing concrete about reality TV. The whole concept is flawed and insincere. However, the hip hop world has not been able to avoid the vacuous scheme of false reality.
Big Smo (real name: John Lee Smith) is a supposed Southern Man with a passion for hip hop who can be seen on the A&E program aptly titled Big Smo. (Plenty of thought must have gone into naming this series) The show follows Big Smo on his quest for superstardom as a large (literately and figuratively) white rapper, all while dealing with the ups-and-downs of raising a family.
Big Smo is a big bore on the TV and the speaker. Big Smo should drop the hip hop persona and think about going country. With a real name like John Lee Smith, that just sounds like something with a Western swing.
7 Asher Roth
Did you love college? Asher Roth loved college; so much that he felt compelled to release a frat-bot themed track titled: “I Love College.” Hopefully Asher Roth loves the term “one hit wonder” as well because nobody is buying into his hip hop image which mirrors every movie every made about University and fraternity living.
Asher Roth is the typical white kid adapting hip hop culture story alluded to in the introduction. Roth was raised in small-town Pennsylvania where his father worked as an executive and his mother as a yoga instructor. What has more street-cred than town full of humble roads, a nice little cubicle, and proper blood circulation?
Asher Roth – like many others – was said to be the next Eminem but instead of summoning Slim Shady, the college-loving rapper should reapply for next semester – start over from scratch.
6 Chanel West Coast
If you tune into MTV, you may have stumbled across a show called Ridiculousness, where skateboarder Rob Dyrdek (host) stands atop a giant laptop and presents clips from the internet for humorous effect. Sitting off to the side, you will find Steelo Brim and Chanel West Coast – sidekicks of sorts to Dyrdek.
Chanel West Coast (real name: Chelsea Dudley) has been signed to the Lil Wayne founded record label Young Money Entertainment. While an official full-length album has yet to drop, Chanel has released a few singles for the hip hop community to admire … or abolish into the gutters of times, never to be heard again by human ears.
The idea of a little while girl making it big in the male-dominated rap game is a nice notion but it is clearly not Chanel West Coast as is evident with her music. Being cute on MTV does not equal musical talent.
5 Vanilla Ice
This is a must – a necessary addition to a list dedicated to terrible white rappers. The infamous Vanilla Ice (real name: Robert Van Winkle): the Godfather of white rappers. The man whose 1990 single “Ice Ice Baby” is played to this day at parties as an homage to corporate cheese and white mockery.
Following his one-hit-wonder success, Vanilla Ice would fall hard. Throughout the years, Vanilla Ice has been arrested on multiple occasions for threats, assaults, and theft. The wicked ways of this world have taken their toll on Vanilla Ice who claims his image was manufactured by the record label early on in his career – ultimately leading to depression and the deterioration of his well-being.
Vanilla Ice has continued to make music (rap-rock style) but with little mainstream success making him what is now considered an “underground” artist.
4 Violent J
Violent J (real name: Joseph Bruce) is one-half of the outrageous hip hop duo known as Insane Clown Posse. Shaggy 2 Dope (real name: Joseph Utsler) who makes up the other half of the face painted freakish rap group does not qualify for this list as he is of Native American descent.
Violent J on the other hand – who is widely acknowledged as the “bigger star” of the duo – has made rounds as a solo artist as well as with ICP. The outlandish idea of rapping clowns is nowhere near reputable hip hop claim.
Aside from their hip hop careers, ICP have long been associated with professional wrestling, working for various promotions before finally creating their own: Juggalo Championship Wrestling. (If you know anything about wrestling you will know that JCW is just a cheap knockoff of the original ECW)
3 Machine Gun Kelly
Machine Gun Kelly (real name: Richard Baker) is a former heroin addict who now smokes weed on the daily as a way to feel “happy” and “loved. MGK was born to missionary parents who most likely disapprove of such behavior.
When thinking about MGK (which hopefully you do not do very often): always remember that he is rebel – a man of rhyme and social delinquency with his tattooed body and carefree attitude towards social acceptance – or maybe just another white kid acting hard.
Machine Gun Kelly = Missionary Son Gone Wrong … Come back to Jesus, Richard Baker.
2 Kevin Federline
People will always associate Kevin Federline with Britney Spears. The dancer turned rapper and America's (former) Sweetheart once made up the quintessential trailer-park-trash couple of Hollywood. Oh, how the glory days were gone for Britney.
Kevin Federline – who possesses as much musical talent as a piece of roadkill – would try his hand at the rap game, releasing the rotten album known as Playing with Fire back in 2006 – a ghastly attempt at hip hop music which was met with scathing reviews and general hatred.
Kevin Federline once worked as a backup dancer for Justin Timberlake … Both men have been with Britney Spears … One man has succeeded in the music industry … JT > K-FED.
1 Riff Raff
The term “riff raff” is generally used to described those who are viewed as the downtrodden undesired citizens who inhabit our plant. The white rapper known as Riff Raff (real name: Horst Simco) certainly fits the description.
Riff Raff is a rare combination of douchebag and high school loser whose excessive behavior proves nothing other than high levels of great ignorance. With his braided hair, mouth-grill, and over-the-top style, Riff Raff tops our list as the biggest white rapper disgrace.
Riff Raff is a joke – a bad joke at that – who will never be taken seriously in the hip hop world. If music can save lives, the sounds of Riff Raff can make a person suicidal.