So I got inspired to do this post because of the information that I have come across during my studies of the Brazilian Portuguese language. Diving into the Brazilian musical underworld of hip hop and Carioca and ostenção funk, I notice there had been several murders of Brazilian hip hop and funk artists in the last couple of years. I figured that this could be a dangerous place to be a hip hop musician, but then I had to think at the a murdered rappers right here in the States. After that, I even thought about the murders of artists when I was living in Panama. It seemed as if there was a recurring theme, that In many of these cases the murdered is never caught, and there are often more than one story of what actually happened.
In Brazil,The murder of the well respected Sabotage was a devastating blow to the Brazilian hip hop scene. I started on my Brazilian hip hop journey listening to artists like Racionais MCs MV Bill and Dexter of 509-e. these are all top notch artists with great material and longevity. However as I continued to dive into the scene I first learned about Sabotage. It was definitely his look that caught my attention! It was some what of a Coolio type of thing happening, but once I heard his style I was hooked by the raspy voice and fast rap flow. I still have to admit that through using so much slang I can hardly understand him, but after using the urban hip hop dictionary and analyzing the lyrics I started to understand him. He talked a lot about his neighborhood. A Zona Sul (the south zone) and the name of his neighborhood was Brooklyn-Brooklyn Sao Paulo a place that he seemed to represent in every song. The difference between the death of Sabotage and other artists in the states and internationally is that his murderer was actually caught and give fourteen years for the crime. It is said to have been a revenge killing that involved drugs, but the wife of Sabotage is in disbelief because he gave up his street life several years ago.
He is a good guy, He is not involved in the streets! the same thing said about Brazilian Funk Artist MC Daleste. His death was so bizarre because he was shot in the stomach on stage at a concert of about four thousand people, and somehow the killer was able to escape. The concert footage was put on youtube,and now you can just type in rapper gets killed on stage and watch the last performance from Daleste. It is so erie! everytime I watch it I expect the outcome to change, but it never does. Click the link below to watch, although I must warn you it is quite disturbing!
Sabotage was killed in 2003, but it seems like a recent surge in the number of Brazilian MCs killed, especially in the sub-genre of funk music. some of the others are MC Boladao, DJ Felipe Silva Gomes both killed together in 2010. MC Japones, found hanging was ruled a suicide but there is foul play that same year, along with. MC Duda Marape five months later, where military-police issued cartridges were found at the crime scene. in 2012 military police were accused of killing MC Primo, and several days after the MC Primo murder, was the murder of MC Careca.
It has to be so stressful to think that everytime you hop on stage, you are a potential target for attempted murder, so much so that many artist in Brazil are performing with bulletproofs. Some of the reasons that people give for the death of some of these MCs, particlarly the funk rappers are that the lyrics were very anti-police and even talked about killing cops. It is believed the there is a group of x police vigilantes that are killing artists in Brazil. Also with the case of Daleste and Sabotage, here are poor people from Sao Paulo that have made their way in the entertainment business. While some of the people in their circumference are still living that life of extreme poverty. To a point that before his death Daleste was netting about $90,000 a month doing shows!! Can you imagine the level of envy that a rise like that an cause. It could be ex-police, or it could be jealous old acquaintances from the neighborhood. At any rate its safe to say that being a rapper in Brazil, can be very dangerous at times.