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Getting Ahead in Hip-Hop

Getting Ahead in Hip-Hop

Who: Head Poppin' Fattness
Where: SJ's on Beaumont
When: Wednesday December 20, 2000

By their nature rap groups such as Newcastle's own HEAD POPPIN' FATTNESS have had to evolve out of nothing in order to make a noise on the Hunter music scene.

Brothers MICHAEL and SHANE BLOCH, alias LOLLY DEE and WIZZLA, had been rapping together 'for years' before linking up with guitarist JC, drummer MATT SHIELDS and bass player GEE. 'The music I wanted to be hearing wasn't what I was hearing, so I just startedmaking my own,' Wizzla said.

'We ran into these guys and thought Yeah that's where we want to be at",' adds Lolly Dee.

What evolved was Head Poppin' Fattness, a mix of rap, rock and funk, performing tonight at SJ's Hotel and on their own bill at the Cambridge Hotel on Saturday night.

Put the brothers together in a room and what you'll hear could be described as 'hip-hop grind swank, supergroove, super fat' - and that's even before the instruments have been added.

According to JC, who began playing in hip-hop bands in Canberra in 1995, playing hip-hop music is 'about creating a scene'.

'It's part of the hip-hop culture to involve your crew as much as possible,' he said.

The 'crew' or audience is encouraged to bring its own instruments and participate.

Shows are also attended by a strong contingent of break dancers - known as beat boys - who travel by the name of THE SHAWN MEN. 'It's good when we have shows, there's always heaps of beat boys showing up for a super expression session,' Lolly enthuses.

In Newcastle the group has been asked to support national acts such as SONIC ANIMATION, GROOVE TERMINATOR and 28 DAYS. The group is influenced by Australian hip-hop acts such as DEATH WISH CAST from Sydney, TERRIYAKI GRAND CHILD from Canberra and TERRAFIRMA from Adelaide.

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