Think of your favorite rappers. Now think of your favorite underground rappers. Okay, now think of your favorite Asian rappers. Can you name one? What about a top five? Asians are a minority, especially in the world of American hip-hop, and a new documentary called Bad Rap (which premieres at Tribeca Film Festival on April 16) takes viewers deep into their world—a world that's often full of skeptics. There may not be many Asian rappers, and they may not be visible on Kanye or Drake levels, but they're certainly out there. The film's tagline sums it up: “You don't hear us on the radio.” Just watch our exclusive trailer premiere above and meet the unsung Asian heroes of hip-hop.
Directed by Salima Koroma and produced by Complex alum Jaeki Cho, Bad Rap weaves the tales of four Asian-American rappers of distinctive styles (Awkwafina, Dumbfoundead, Rekstizzy, and Lyricks) with performance footage and talking head interviews to show the obstacles and stereotypes they face in launching a career in rap. How often are they underestimated? What does it take to break into an artform that's so unwelcoming?
Bad Rap plays several times throughout Tribeca Film Fest. Find dates and times here, and check out the poster below.