Chengdu Rappers is the second track of “P.E.I Vol.2”, one of the first projects released in 2014 by the Chengdu local rapper Masiwei (马思唯). In that song, the Sichuanese dialect of the young MC smoothly matches the sampling of a huge hit for the post-90’s youth in France : “Belle Demoiselle” by the female rapper Diam’s. While listening to this song over and over, a thousand of questions came to my mind. How could such an encounter between a French idol and a upcoming Chinese rapper ever happen ? Does Masiwei even know the original lyrics of this song and what can he possibly sing over ? And why nobody’s heard about this track before ?
In 2018, I moved to Chengdu in order to investigate on the local rap scene and start my PhD research on the ground – or to put it more local, in the hotpot. From this experience, I decided to open this academic blog, in an attempt to gather and facilitate access to music, illustrations, videos and written texts about the Sichuan hip-hop scene and more generally, about rap in China. In the fast growing Chinese environment, many creations end up being disseminated all over the Chinese internet, making it very difficult for the Western audience to access them. The characteristics of the Chinese socio-political context also trigger the disappearance (voluntary or forced) of archives that deserve to be protected in order to better understand the cultural creation in China today.
The reader, scholar or simple music lover, will find here documentation and articles about one of the spiciest and most active rap scene of China. The content will eventually be integrated in a PhD dissertation on cultural hybridity and Chinese rap.