Das Racist: Deconstructing The Rappers' References

Categories: Pop Life, SXSW

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Over the past two years, Das Racist has been a Pitchfork favorite and highly revered for their witty, perhaps smarmy delivery of mostly historical and pop-culture references. The duo - trio if you include their hypeman, Dap, and quartet if you include their hypeman's hypeman, Lakutis - is coming to Texas to perform at SXSW in Austin and in Houston March 22 at Fitzgerald's with Fat Tony, Muhammidali, and Simple Success.

Following is a list of lines from tracks off of the first DR mixtape, Shut Up, Dude, as well as two other single releases. It is by no means is a comprehensive deconstruction, but we recommend that you take a harder listen to these dudes' lyrics - you might learn something new.

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"Hugo Chavez" (Shut Up):

"MOMA, momma, thrown off the train. General Dyer, blown off the brain."

  • MOMA: Abbreviation for New York's Museum of Modern Art.
  • Throw Momma from the Train was a 1987 movie starring Billy Crystal and Danny DeVito.
  • Reginald Dyer was a British Indian Army officer responsible for the Jallianwala Bagh Massacre in Amritsar, where 379 unarmed civilians - an unofficial number; many say it could have been as high as 2,000 - were killed and more than 1,000 injured. Dyer died of cerebral hemorrhaging in 1927.

"Plus-size model, minority, no Dinesh D'Souza. More like from Fallujah, so holla you loser/ John Philip Sousa, uses and abuses."

  • Suri has been known to criticize a celebrity or two, including academic and author Dinesh D'Souza: "He's on some model-minority bullshit. I ain't down with that."
  • John Philip Sousa was an American composer who wrote the official march of the United States Marine Corps, "Semper Fidelis," as well as many other American war anthems.
  • Fallujah is a city in the Iraqi province of Al Anbar; its inhabitants were victims of violence and war crimes by American troops in the Fallujah Offensive of 2004.

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"Speaking In Tongues":

"We are DR, Troopers like VR. Gerard Depardieu, young green card."

  • VR Troopers (Virtual Reality Troopers) was a live action television show similar to Mighty Morphin Power Rangers from 1994-96.
  • French actor Gerard Depardieu won the 1991 Golden Globe for Best Actor In a Musical or Comedy for his performance in 1990's Green Card.


My Voice Nation Help

Hipster rap, hoo-ray! *gags self with plunger*

Allison Wagoner
Allison Wagoner

Rage Against The Machine covered that song, I just wanted to throw in another group reference. Should've put KRS in parenthesis, but since it's a classic thought it was understood

Casey Connelly
Casey Connelly

If you're going to deconstruct rap references, please do a better job. "Sound of da Police" is NOT a RATM song, it's KRS-ONE. Come on, you should know that. It's a classic.

That's just one. Points to those who can find the other mistakes.


come on, you should realize how arrogant you sound

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