One month after the Sugarhill Gang’s 1979 record Rapper’s Delight introduced hip-hop to a national audience, three New York Jewish men under the moniker Steve Gordon & The Kosher Five recorded the first rap parody record, a Yiddish-accented humorous skit full of American Jewish cultural tropes set to a funky disco beat. This track may have been a one-off joke among friends, but it stands as the first in a long line of Jewish parody rap records that use hip-hop and humor to explore American Jewish identity and stereotypes of Jewish masculinity.
The Siegal Lifelong Learning Program at Case Western Reserve University will host Lee Tyson, a postdoctoral scholar in the Humanities in Leadership Learning Series program, for a talk about Jewish parody in hip-hop titled “Shake Your Tuchas” Friday, April 28, from 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. The event will be held in-person at the Landmark Centre Building (25700 Science Park Dr., Beachwood) and virtually.
This talk will trace key moments in the history of Jewish parody rap and situate them in relation to broader contexts of historical Black-Jewish musical relations.
This lecture is part of the HILLS Lecture Series presented by scholars participating in the Humanities in Leadership Learning Series at CWRU.