Hip-Hop Invades the London Olympics

When Hip-Hop Happens

For this installment of “When Hip-Hop Happens,” we’re not going to point to a specific instance for our Hip-Hop happening.

Instead we will reflectively point to three instances in the news that, in their subtlety, constitute what we here at Boom Bap Radio like to call an unabashed Hip-Hop happening.

It was almost 40 years ago when urban culture manifested itself as Hip-Hop on the street corners and public parks of the Bronx, New York and today what seemed so secular then, has become absolutely global!

In the 21st Century – Hip-Hop is truly everywhere.

That truth seemed to resonate seemingly from London, England, as the Summer Olympics opened, all the way to the hills of Kentucky last week.

In the UK – Young athletes from around the world, already fans of the genre, openly allowed Hip-Hop to happen in a setting that has long been stodgy and formal – Olympic and Collegiate athletics.

I Need A Beats

 In London, Hip-Hop pioneer Dr. Dre was accused by the International Olympic Committee (IOC) of launching an out and out “marketing ambush,” on the games when he came up with the idea of sending athletes special versions of his popular Beats headphones, personalized and in the athlete’s national colors.The G-Funk Doctor allegedly sent batches of the specialized and pricey headphones to international athletes, mostly targeting those from Great Britain. IOC officials said such a gift violated its advertising rules, which prohibit companies from advertising from companies that did not hold official Olympic rights.

The “marketing ambush,” was particularly effective in Aquatics Centre where reportedly almost every swimmer sported the trendy headphones as a tool to block outside noise and to concentrate. Members of the British Soccer Team and Tennis teams were also seen sporting their colorful Beats ear gear.

The display followed a protest by US athletes in regards to IOC code of conduct regulation Rule 40, which prevents Olympic competitors from using social media to mention their sponsors.

Team Japan got the Beats

With an official partnership with Panasonic, the IOC officials cried foul of Dre’s the skirting of its marketing policy, but he ain’t hear dem thou.

Tweets from the athletes suggested that Beats reps were distributing the hot headphones in the hotels that housed Olympic athletes and the response seemed to be nothing but love.

However, endorsement concerns has been a concern in past Olympics.

Jordan with his deal draped

Remember the 1992 Dream Team draping the US flag over their hot Nike gear?

The Beats saga has its roots in the 2008 Olympic games in Beijing, China, where international hoops superstar LeBron James rocked his Beats and distributed pairs to the rest of Team USA.

IOC President Jacques Rogge was looking into the marketing assault, stating the use of unauthorized brands could ultimately hurt the games ability to attract sponsorship, therefore endangering the games themselves.

Oh, let’s just chill, ‘til the next episode.


Hip-Hop even found its way into the controversy over the Chinese, South Korean and Indonesian Badminton players.

Players from the aforementioned countries were disqualified from the games after they accused of deliberately under performing in the hopes of pimping the new round robin seeding rules. The teams were accused of trying to lose so they could miss more difficult opponents when they advance to the new “knockout stage” of the competition.

Accused of “failing to try their best,” matters probably weren’t helped when disqualified World Badminton Champion Yu Yang of China said if they were not trying their best it was because the knockout stage was all that mattered – hmmmm.

 So how did Hip-Hop ooze into this sticky situation.

Jan Jorgenson of Denmark’s Men’s Badminton team had the quote of the day as per Bloomberg News: “Don’t hate the player, hate the game. It’s the fault of the BWF, it’s the setup.”


Denmark in da house?????

Bling, Bling

Okay, maybe I’m reaching, but the other Hip-Hop and sports related matters, took place this week back here in the US when Canadian-born “rapper” Drake was seen showing off his 2012 Kentucky University Wildcats NCAA Championship ring.

Replete with an instagrammed photo – the big supporter of Kentucky ball, rocked a diamond encrusted ring that commemorating Kentucky’s victory with “Drizzy,” etched on its side.

Replete with an instagrammed photo – the big supporter of Kentucky ball, rocked a diamond encrusted ring that commemorating Kentucky’s victory with “Drizzy,” etched on its side.

Now ain’t that’s some ish.

Man it’s good to see people up on it!


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Masta Talka

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