As a South Asian in a non-traditional career track. I always try and represent and share examples of Desis in the cultural spotlight other than Dr. Sanjay Gupta or inane and offensive tech support caricatures. New York alternative hip-hop group Das Racist successfully mixes comedy and erudite cultural critique from a minority perspective. Like Canadian punk musician King Khan and the Shrines, Das Racist has gathered appeal from a mostly white, culture-obsessed, urban-bourgeois audience and similarly classed minorities such as myself. It’s a shame I have to explain to my fellow Desis who these guys are.
The pronunciation of Das follows a colloquial urban pronunciation of “that’s” as opposed to the German definite article “das”.The name derives from a sarcastic quip “That’s racist” from the MTV2 program Wonder Showzen, used to discredit and ease offensive content.
And then it became a game … to take all the seriousness out of making legitimate commentary on race, because that can get very annoying. So when something veering on racially insensitive would pop off in a commercial on television or something it would be like, who could yell “That’s Racist” first. And then we thought it would be a cool name” —Wikipedia on Das Racist
After releasing two mixtapes Shut Up, Dude and Sit Down, Man. The trio released a full-length album Relax. Das Racist is playing at Sons of Herman Hall on Elm Street tonight at 8pm. Danny Brown, Despot and Fat Tony open.